Amari Spievey
5’11, 195 pounds | Cornerback | Iowa

Agility: Maintains good balance when changing direction and looks to have fluid hips. Turns easily but gets his legs tangled at times.

Ball skills: Showed solid hands intercepting six passes in two seasons. Has long arms which he knows how to use to his advantage. Gets his hands up to break up passes.

Although Spievey only started for two years following community college, he’s a very heady player. He has great recognition skills, which could help him start as a rookie. He’s known as a hard worker in the film room and it shows on the field. Diagnoses between run and pass plays efficiently. Could do a little better job staying on a receiver’s hip when he turns to look for the ball.

Man coverage: Wasn’t used a lot in man coverage. Doesn’t have the best change of direction ability, so he can be beaten by smaller, quick receivers. Because of his long arms and physical playing style, it stands to reason that Spievey could hold up in press situations, but it might not ever be his strong suit. Doesn’t use his hands all that well to reroute. He also has some footwork issues coming out of his breaks.

Size: Average height for the position but has solid bulk. Has long arms – 32 inches at the combine – and fairly large hands for a cornerback. Really high cut with long legs. Plays stronger than he measures.

Speed: Playing speed is nothing special. He timed at 4.52 in the 40-yard dash at the combine. Struggles to recover when beaten. That’s why he fits better in a zone scheme.

Is a very good tackler and knows how to wrap up correctly. Is strong as a run supporter. He may get locked up on blocked, but Spievey knows the correct angles to take to get to the ball carrier uninhibited.

Zone coverage:
Looks the part of an excellent cover-2 cornerback. Knows how to maintain his position and wait for a play to develop. Doesn’t get antsy when receivers are working through his area. Reads routes really well. Reads the play in front of him as good as any corner in this year’s draft.

Final word:
Spievey is someone who really came on throughout the 2009 season. He’s a really good zone coverage candidate and could excel in a cover-2 scheme. He has some tools to work with, but his speed and footwork issues limit him a bit. Still, it’s hard to dislike a cornerback who plays the run so well and has good instincts.