2. Tariq Castro-Fields, Penn State
The next target on the lower-round list is Tariq Castro-Fields of Penn State. He was at No. 13 on the SI.com cornerback prospect list. Again, he has good size at 6-1 and 197 pounds, and great speed, having run a 4.38 40-yard dash. If you need speed, as the Patriots clearly do, Castro-Fields will bring it.
Here’s what Bleacher Report has to say about him:
"Standing at around 6’0″, Castro-Fields has long arms that he uses often. A long strider, he shows the ability to run well and quickly gets up to top speed; though he shows trouble changing direction and flipping his hips. He does a very good job playing routes in front of him and bursting out of breaks when he can see the route develop. With quick feet and above-average lateral movement, Castro-Fields is able to play well in press."
So Castro-Fields has good size, great speed, and can play press coverage. If the Pats can land him in the later rounds, he could be a late-round steal. He’s the kind of prospect that could help fill the void left at cornerback by the departures of last season’s starting two cornerbacks, Stephon Gilmore and Jackson.
Castro-Fields started for four years for the Nittany Lions and racked up 100 tackles. Is he a finished product? According to Bleacher Report’s Scouting Report, hardly. Yet, no lower-round prospect is going to check all the boxes as a complete player. That’s why they’re lower-round picks.
Having the requisite speed and size to play in the NFL and a four-year track record for a top team is a good starting point.