Name: Kyler Gordon
Year: Redshirt Junior
Weight: 200 lbs
Hometown: Everett, Washington
High School: Archbishop Murphy
Four-star recruit in the 2018 recruiting class out of Everett, Washington. According to 24/7 Sports composite rankings, he was the 3rd ranked prospect in the state of Washington and the 19th ranked cornerback prospect in the entire class. Received offers from the likes of Oregon, Stanford, & Nebraska. Also received an offer from Notre Dame, and took a visit to South Bend in September of his recruiting cycle before taking a visit and deciding to commit to the University of Washington in December. Didn’t play much as a freshman, taking only 48 total snaps, most of which came on special teams. Playing time increased for his sophomore year, and then again this season after a COVID year in 2020. Received the majority of his playing time out wide opposite of Trent McDuffie and Keith Taylor during his tenure at Washington.
GAMES WATCHED: vs California (2019), vs Utah (2020), vs UCLA (2021), vs California (2021)
Instincts (50/80): Wish he didn’t rely on his athleticism so much, seems to react late on a lot of plays, including quick breaking routes. Often leaves too much space for easy yardage and completions. Would love to see a quicker reaction on a lot of those plays. Has a great get-off and first step, but I wish his reaction was a bit faster on some shorter-length routes to be able to make a play.
Man Coverage (60/80): Really sticky in man-to-man coverage, doesn’t give up many big plays at all. Fluid hip movement due to excellent movement skills. Can match stride for stride with almost anyone on the outside. Wish he didn’t rely on his athletic prowess as much because it often puts him out of position early. He does have super twitchy and fluid feet that allow him to change direction fairly quickly, but they are not always shown and used consistently from a technical standpoint.
Zone Coverage (40/80): One of the big improvements needed in Gordon’s game. Tends to be a ball watcher and wanderer in his zone a lot of times, gives way too much space initially, and has to fight his way back to the ball a lot of times. Quicker breaking routes bite Gordon easily, leading to very easy completions underneath for the offense. Seems to be a little slow at times dissecting different concepts, causing the big gaps that Gordon leaves underneath.
Ball Skills (65/80): One of the most intriguing traits that Gordon has to offer. Athleticism helps him a ton here with his ability to go up and make plays on the ball. Has a great eye for the ball with great tracking ability and body control to go up and track the ball at its highest point. Excellent body control in the few opportunities that were available for Gordon to make a play on the ball.
Tackling & Run Support (60/80): Brings a nice physical edge to his game. Gordon is a very good wrap-up tackler when he gets the right angle on the play, which can mislead him sometimes. Willingness to play the run and get involved in the run game is enticing. Has a great, quick first step that allows him to get to the ball carrier very quickly.
Physicality (55/80): Really liked the willingness by Gordon to play, to run, and to play the run often. Also was seen jamming receivers at the line in the rare press occasions that he was in, which was a pleasant surprise. Lowers the shoulder with ease to make the necessary big hit when needed.
Change of Direction (60/80): Super fluid movement skills, with a dancing background this makes sense. Has quick feet and the ability to change direction laterally with ease. Has a really nice fluid twitch and rotation in his hips, especially when he needs to make a play-upfield, but in coverage the mental processor seems a bit slow, causing inconsistencies in technique.
Recovery Ability (65/80): Gordon rarely gets beaten over the top, at least in the games I watched, and when he does his athleticism is a great tool to easily get back to make a play on the ball. His speed and explosiveness are some of his best traits, so he can easily make up lost space when he gets beaten off the line.
Long Speed (70/80): Gordon is fast. Very fast. Doesn’t allow much space between him and the receiver because he can match stride for stride with anyone. Closing speed and initial burst are exceptional. Can make plays from all over the field and has great tracking ability to get there to make a play in an instant.
Size/Frame (60/80): Plays more physical than his size would suggest, has really solid length for a corner. Would love to see a little more strength added to help him get off blocks and further be an asset in run support.
Red Flags- 10/10: No red flags were found during background research.
RAS Score: Incomplete
Tape Grade W/O RAS: 7.36
Round Grade: 3rd
Summary: Kyler Gordon is one of the most athletic players I have evaluated in this draft class so far. He has incredible movement skills combined with speed that allows him to play with anyone on the field. Technically, he is a little raw and requires some fine-tuning. He tends to give too much space in zone, and is late to react on hard-breaking routes, causing easy completions and yardage to total up against him. It’s almost as if he relies too much on his athleticism in coverage, which will not always work against more refined route runners in the NFL. If he can continue to grow and develop more consistently from a technical standpoint, he has all the tools to be a high-end boundary corner in the NFL. I think Gordon is a higher upside corner that will only get better with coaching and some technical refinement. The athleticism is going too hard to pass up on for a lot of teams.
Follow Josh on Twitter @JoshBerg0611.