Sutton’s scheme is demanding of its cornerbacks. Sutton likes to give little safety help to either of his outside corners, often leaving them in man-to-man, and also up at the line of scrimmage in press coverage.
For any NFL corner, against the quality of wide receivers that are in the NFL nowadays and the more stringent rules, that is a tough task. For corners who are either rookies or who have not played for a whole season and have very little experience of playing on the outside in the NFL? Dorsey is expecting a lot of his young corners.
Russell is an extremely exciting prospect. Someone who excels in press man coverage, a scheme that Bob Sutton will utilize frequently, Russell is a tough competitor, has great athletic ability and decent speed. He is an excellent cover corner, has the quickness to mirror receivers stride for stride and has good anticipation in jumping routes. Russell is easily a second round talent if it were not the broken leg he played through last season and a suspension in 2014 due to “academic dishonesty”, and the Chiefs have picked up a good corner at great value.
I expect Gaines to win the starting role on the outside, but it would not be surprising to see Russell supplant him later in the year. That is not due to Gaines’ incompetence on the outside, but more due to his proficiency on the inside. The Chiefs will be hoping that Russell develops into a legitimate, starting caliber, outside corner to replace Smith and then will move Gaines back to his more preferred slot position.
A corner trio of Russell, Gaines and Peters, while young and inexperienced, is something to be excited about. While the position on the whole is still worrisome, Kansas City must find money saving position groups due to salary cap demands, and Dorsey sees cornerback as that position. It will be a challenge for the young corners in Kansas City, but will be one that they can overcome.