Javier Arenas
5’9, 198 pounds | Cornerback | Alabama

Agility: Shows excellent agility to move around laterally with ease. Is a very quick player on his feet and sticks with shifty receivers. Cut into and out of his breaks without losing a beat.

Ball Skills: Moderately underrated in this area because of his low interception numbers. But Arenas shows in his return abilities that he has good hands. Muffing a kick was a rarity and Arenas showed good ball placement on returns.

Body Control: Displays great mid-air agility. Has a good vertical leap. Shows good balance in his backpedal. Possesses a consistent backpedal.

Instincts: Arenas displayed great recognition skills throughout his career. Reads plays quickly and adjusts especially well. Gets an excellent break on the ball. Will bite on fakes from time to time.

Man coverage: A lack of great speed is what hurts Arenas here, even more so than his height. Fast receivers can beat him deep and needs safety help over the top. Shows a good jam at the line and likes to get physical in man coverage. Knows how to properly use his hands to re-route receivers.

Pursuit: Strong in pursuit. Arenas does an excellent job of supporting against the run. Going into the national championship game, Arenas had an incredible 12 tackles for loss. Works through blocks surprisingly well.

Speed: Lacks great straight-line speed. What speed Arenas has, however, comes immediately. He can quickly get up to speed thanks to an explosive first step.

Tackling: Is an above-average tackler in the open field. Sinks his hips nicely and runs through opponents. Can be an intimidating hitter when he wants.

Zone coverage: Because Arenas has such good instincts, he is always a threat in zone coverage. Almost always gets himself in good position to break on the ball because of his anticipation skills.

Final word: Arenas is very similar to former Wake Forest cornerback Alphonso Smith. His intangible cornerback skills are pretty excellent, he’s a very good return man. However, he’s short with somewhat suspect speed.

Arenas has made a career out of being a heady, tough cornerback who knows how to get good positioning. He’s been Alabama’s chief return man since his freshman season. On punts, Arenas is about as good as there is in the 2010 NFL Draft.

Unfortunately for Arenas, cornerbacks his size don’t get drafted in the first round. He’ll have to make his name at the next level covering slot receivers and excelling on special teams. You know what you’re getting in Arenas. His upside is minimal.