College: Michigan State
Position: Defensive Corner
Waynes has a narrow, long frame that contributes to it being difficult for him to break down and explode out of cuts which effects his balance, resulting in him getting “handsy” with receivers out of their breaks to prevent separation. His balance does however appear to be much better in his backpedal as he showcases very quiet feet & the ability to stay centered on his man before the break (through subtle jukes/fakes by the opposition). His agility in turning his hips and running is very fluid and smooth, but laterally he struggles to stay with more twitched up receivers. His COD is a bit rounded rather than sharp, resulting in some sluggishness. He has good, not great flexibility in his hips and has outstanding coordination in shifting his weight around on his feet to backpedal smoothly, turn/run, and mirror consistently.
Section Grade: 6.5
Pride / Quit
Despite primarily playing in off man coverage Waynes is a hard-nosed player who shows plenty of willingness to stick his nose in run support and throw around his body to stop the ball. He is a reliable player who has had average production through 27 career starts. He made the switch from field corner in ’13 to boundary corner in ’14 seamlessly. Waynes plays from snap to whistle consistently and will chase down the ball from across the field (’14 Ohio State tape he chased down RB 40+ yards downfield). He appears engaged with his teammates and shows obvious passion for the game on film.
Section Grade: 6.4
Learn / Retain
Instinct / Reaction
Waynes has showed improvement from ’13 to ’14 in terms of play recognition & strength but struggled in the ’14 tapes I saw to consistently show the ability to recognize the ball quickly and track from an over the shoulder position. He also was consistently late in turning his head and even turned it to the wrong side at times. While his concentration is lacking when the ball is in the air, he does recognize the ball quickly on draws and transitions from a backpedal to run support seamlessly. Also shows excellent focus in his backpedal by not overextending or lounging at a receiver’s outside/in or inside/out stutter/jukes.
Section Grade: 6
Strength / Explosion
Waynes is a high cut, narrow frame with good arm length, excellent definition throughout, and appears to be close to maxed out regarding his weight. He hasn’t missed a game in his three year career (2 as a starter) and has no reported injuries in his college career. Waynes doesn’t get to speed very fast, laterally explode very well, or offer a ton of twitch but he has a 5th gear and outstanding long speed. He has surprising strength at the POA at lockout and can hold his own in the run game when he gets first contact. Has the ability to be a strong wrap up tackler who packs a punch, just needs to become more consistent in his technique here.
Section Grade: 6.9
6.5 Read & React
Does a very solid job of staying patient in his backpedal and reading his man + the ball before reacting prematurely or getting jittery feet. Transitions from defending the pass to the run smoothly and with aggression. Will struggle getting a read on the ball from over-the-shoulder position. Seems to loose the ball or find it late in the air
6 Man On / Man Off
Primarily played from an off man position in ’14. Excels at turning his hips smoothly and keeping speed on the turn. Can stay with virtually any WR stride for stride but due to being high cut will struggle in breaking down with receivers on cuts/staying in-phase out of breaks
7 Man Tight
Did not see as much press man as you would want to see from a player with his skill-set. I think he will excel more from playing press than off in the pros due to his strength, physicality, and long speed to trail.
5.5 Zone Coverage
Lacks the twitch/agility to jump routes from a standstill. More of a proactive CB than a reactive one
6 Break & Close
Doesn’t have great explosion from a standstill and doesn’t get to speed very fast. Also can struggle with poor angles in closing. When given ability to generate speed he can chase down nearly anyone. His 1.53 10 yd split with a 4.31 40 at the combine isn’t as fast as you’d expect for such a blazing 40, serving as a bit of confirmation for the tape
8 Hips / Turn ability
Has exceptionally smooth hips when turning, mirroring receivers and staying in-phase with all styles of receivers. Has excellent coordination and smooth footwork to transition with ease
Has the strength & physicality to bring down runners solo but can take poor angles at times and/or ankle bite prematurely, sometimes missing altogether. Needs to refine his technique but the tools are there to be a force in run support
6 Hands – INT
Has shown the concentration to make difficult grabs with receivers draped on him (’14 Penn St in end zone, ’14 Nebraska on sideline) but has missed easy attempts (’14 Penn State right through hands). Needs to demonstrate more consistency with hands
7 Hands – Fight blocks
Improved from ’13 to ’14 in physicality at POA and his 19 reps at combine translate to field. Has a very strong lockout at POA and more than enough aggressiveness to disengage at will
8 Long Speed
Has all the long speed needed to be a CB1 in the NFL. Has the 5th gear you want in a corner
6 Return Ability
Clean player who is very smooth in his backpedal (quiet feet, patient) but consistently loses track of the ball in the air from the trail position and is late to turn head or locate ball.
Section Grade: 6.5
7 ATH. ABILITY
6.5 M / M OFF
7 M / M TIGHT
7.5 PLAY SPEED
Section Grade: 6.9
Overall Grade: J 6.5
- 19 reps 225, 4.31 40, 1.53 10 yd split, 38 inch vert, 10-2 broad, 4.39 20 SS, 7.06 3 cone
Proactive corner with muscular, long limbs. Has excellent coordination and executes a very smooth backpedal with extremely quiet feet. Patient in coverage, rarely overextends from backpedal. Very physical despite thinner frame, unafraid to stick his nose in run support. True snap to whistle player who plays with fire. Possesses exceptional long speed with a 5th gear. Very smooth hips to turn and run.
Not a strong reactive corner due to being high cut and lacking the ability to explode from a standstill. He is a wind up player who needs time to reach high levels of speed. Doesn’t show adequate ball skills to locate or track the ball consistently downfield. Not an extremely instinctual player but gets by with premier speed and effort. Will need to switch from primarily being an off man CB to more of a press man CB in the pros due to aforementioned skill-set.
Waynes came to Michigan State after starring in high school at baseball, track, and football. He wasn’t heavily recruited coming out of high school and was ranked as a 3 star player. Waynes redshirted his first year on campus before appearing in 9 games as a RS freshman in 2012, primarily on special teams. Waynes went on to start 14 games in 2013 at field corner and 13 games (27 straight) in 2014 at boundary corner. In 2013 he won the Tommy Love Award for the team’s most improved defensive player and was named honorable mention All-Big Ten. In 2014 he was a Thorpe semifinalist, 2nd team All-American, and 1st team All-Big Ten. Waynes finished his career with 101 total tackles, 71 solo, 4 TFL, 1.5 sacks, 6 INT, and 13 PBUs.
Waynes has a thin frame with longer legs than arms (high cut) but is very well-developed and chiseled. Not only is he a snap to whistle player on the field its apparent he works very hard on himself off the field as showcased by his impressive combine. Waynes is a very aggressive and physical corner despite having a slight build. He will come up without hesitation in run support and provide some pop while being an above average tackler with a strong wrap-up. Waynes is very strong at the POA (improved from ’13 to ’14) and uses his lockout to hold position and disengage. He has experience at two different positions as he was the field CB in ’13 before moving to the more prominent boundary CB position in ’14. From this spot he primarily played in off man coverage and various zone schemes. It was an odd fit as Waynes skill-set is better suited in more of a physical approach such a press man. He displays a lot of coordination in his backpedal as it is very smooth with very quiet feet. He does a nice job of not getting jittery and staying center with the WR after the snap when receivers use subtle moves to throw him off. He will however struggle with sharp lateral movements and appear sluggish due to being high cut and not possessing a lot of twitch or agility in short areas. This typically results in him getting overly aggressive (handsy) to compensate for the separation that ensues. He got away with several should’ve been P.I. calls in the tapes I saw. When receivers run vertical routes however, Waynes excels at staying in-phase using a very smooth hip turn and outstanding long speed to trail. His ball skills from this trail position downfield leave a lot to be desired as he too often struggles to turn his head quickly (or to the right side at times) as well as locate and track the ball. This results in him misplaying the ball and generating too many P.I. penalties or losing the WR.
Waynes is best suited as a press-man corner on the next level so he can utilize his strength, physicality, and speed. Staying on the boundary side will also serve him well to allow use of the sideline as a crutch and to keep receivers vertical as much as possible. He could carve out a niche and become a longterm starter but will need to be put in a certain scheme. His lack of versatility, ball skills, and instincts will hurt him but he has enough compensating skill to overcome his deficiencies given he’s in the right scheme.
Value – Top 35
Projection – Top 15
Pro Comp – Dre Kirkpatrick