Ranking the 2024 NFL Draft's top cornerbacks for the Kansas City Chiefs

Let's look at the top 15 cornerbacks in this year's draft class through a Chiefs-specific lens.
Iowa State v Cincinnati
Iowa State v Cincinnati / Dylan Buell/GettyImages

The 2024 NFL Draft is just a few days away. Teams have begun finalizing their boards to figure out their roster needs and where they might find answers. The Kansas City Chiefs have a potential need at corner, and fortunately, this year's rookie class is full of talented prospects that can fill a variety of needs.

With the recent trade of L'Jarius Sneed, the Chiefs are looking to replace a starting-level corner on the outside. The good news is the Chiefs have lots of bodies that could possibly replace Sneed in-house. Jaylen Watson, Joshua Williams, Nic Jones, and Nazeeh Johnson could all factor into the position during training camp.

Let's look at the top 15 cornerbacks in this year's draft class through a Chiefs-specific lens.

The Chiefs have historically had lots of luck drafting and developing corners, particularly on day three of the draft. Today, we'll take a look at the top 15 corners in the 2024 Draft.

To keep up with all of the best prospects in the NFL Draft, make sure to bookmark the Arrowhead Addict Big Board, a Chiefs-specific draft board tailored to the team's roster needs.

1. Quinyon Mitchell, Toledo

Quinyon Mitchell
Toledo v Notre Dame / Michael Hickey/GettyImages

Mitchell was already on the radar of scouts during the 2023 season strictly due to his ball production and ability to play off-man. His strong Senior Bowl showed his ability to press at the line of scrimmage. His strong combine showed he's a top-tier athlete. He has the potential to be the first corner off the board.

2. Terrion Arnold, Alabama

Terrion Arnold
Rose Bowl Game - Alabama v Michigan / Ryan Kang/GettyImages

Versatile and athletic, Arnold has experience at safety, slot, and outside corner. He's an impact tackler in the run game and has been productive on the ball as well. In 2 years as a starter, he produced 20 passes defensed and 6 interceptions as well. Arnold has some long speed concerns but his vision and technique allow him to recover well.

3. Cooper DeJean, Iowa

Cooper Dejean, Quinton Cannon
Western Michigan v Iowa / Matthew Holst/GettyImages

There's still some speculation if a team will keep DeJean at corner or move him to safety. However, that shouldn't limit any team from drafting him. An elite athlete DeJean is a chess piece that can blitz, and take snaps out of the slot, outside, or in the box. He's not as fluid or long as some of the top corners in most drafts but the floor of his skill set is highly valuable in the correct hands.

4. Kool-Aid McKinstry, Alabama

Kool-Aid McKinstry
Rose Bowl Game - Alabama v Michigan / Ryan Kang/GettyImages

Strong zone coverage skills, built in a lab cornerback physique, and loads of experience against top competition. McKinstry is a physical presence on the outside that also supports the run well. A Jones fracture limited him to measurements at the combine and there are some long speed concerns with him. However, his size and intelligence at the position allow him to recover nicely.

5. Nate Wiggins, Clemson

Nate Wiggins
Clemson v South Carolina / Jacob Kupferman/GettyImages

Wiggins was one of the fastest players at the combine with a 4.28 40-yard dash. The speed pops on film too as he makes tremendous hustle plays from the back side and recovers well. However, the speed comes at a cost, he sits at the 2nd percentile in weight (173 lbs.) and 18th percentile arm length. He's been exceptional in coverage and is scheme versatile he would be a different type of corner than the Chiefs have taken in the past.

6. TJ Tampa, Iowa State

T.J. Tampa, Isaiah Neyor
Texas v Iowa State / David Purdy/GettyImages

Long and physical, Tampa is an experienced press-man corner with lots of traits. He has been excellent when targeted by opposing QBs and brings a safety-like presence to the run game. He's not the smoothest mover and can struggle to find the ball if his back is turned. However, he does several things well that the Chiefs value in a corner.

7. Mike Sainristil, Michigan

2024 CFP National Championship - Michigan v Washington
2024 CFP National Championship - Michigan v Washington / CFP/GettyImages

One of the most experienced corners in the class, Sainristil has intangibles through the roof. He has a tremendous football IQ and is a fiesty competitor. He was highly productive in his 5 seasons at Michigan. However, he is small and is essentially locked in as a slot-only defender. A team in need of a slot is going to be very happy getting him on day 2. But don't expect him to kick outside.

8. Ennis Rakestraw, Missouri

Ennis Rakestraw Jr.
Middle Tennessee v Missouri / Ed Zurga/GettyImages

On film, Rakestraw looks like a first-round talent. He's a smooth mover with experience inside and outside with zone and man schemes. He was highly productive at Missouri. His draft process has been a little bit of a letdown though he's measured smaller than expected and the testing was disappointing as well. Add in a history of penalties and there is some concern about him as a day 2 prospect.

9. Max Melton, Rutgers

Max Melton
Maryland v Rutgers / Rich Schultz/GettyImages

Melton is a player who is easy to root for when you watch him play. He brings a "Mad Max" element to the field. He is an explosive athlete who is dynamic in coverage and in run support. He's a little small to live on the outside at the next level but he could rotate there for some reps. He profiles as a day 1 contributor on special teams as well.

10. Kamari Lassiter, Georgia

Kamari Lassiter
2023 SEC Championship - Georgia v Alabama / Todd Kirkland/GettyImages

Everything there is to like about Lassiter is defined by his consistency and technique. Down after down, Lassiter provides sound coverage and technique to the outside of a defense. He will need to rely on his technique after some concerning athleticism testing, particularly the 40-yard dash. Lassiter is also not a good run stuffer he tends to take the path of least resistance when it comes to tackling.

11. Khyree Jackson, Oregon

Khyree Jackson
Oregon State v Oregon / Brandon Sloter/GettyImages

Jackson is one of the few corners who might outsize some of the receivers he is asked to cover. His size brings a power element to the CB position the Chiefs have chased in the past. However, he's one of the older corner prospects in the class and his range of outcomes varies wildly based on how you view height. The list of 6'4" corners to have success in the league is very small.

12. Cam Hart, Notre Dame

Cam Hart
Notre Dame v Stanford / Brandon Sloter/GettyImages

Long and fundamentally sound, Hart is an ideal off-man corner. He uses his size and explosiveness to contest the ball well and almost never gets beat deep. He also is one of the better-tackling corners in the class. There are some concerns about his medicals with his shoulder though. He's also not generated almost any ball production (passes defended/ interceptions).

13. Kris Abrams-Draine, Missouri

Kris Abrams-Draine
Middle Tennessee v Missouri / Ed Zurga/GettyImages

Abrams-Draine has been one of the most productive corners in the country with ball production. With his 27 passes defended and 4 interceptions, he seemingly can run routes for receivers at times. His size might limit him to the slot at the next level.

14. Renardo Green, Florida State

Renardo Green, Ahmari Huggins-Bruce
Florida State v Louisville / Michael Hickey/GettyImages

Another long and physical prospect, Green's straight-line speed is below average. He's not particularly smooth when asked to move his hips but he does lots of things well. The potential versatility at safety has some value too. He shined bright against Malik Nabers and Brian Thomas Jr. early in the college football season. There are several similarities to his profile and L'Jarius Sneed's.