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Phillip Gaines - CB - Rice University

I'm a huge supporter of the Niners waiting until later in the draft to fill the CB need. Gaines is a big (6'0), fast (4.38 40-yd dash/second fastest in the combine), and very coachable corner. What do you guys think of taking Gaines in the 3rd/4th instead of investing heavy on a CB in the first round?

Oh, and in the name of full disclosure: Phillip is my stepbro and I grew up with the kid. I'm a lifelong 49ers fan and I've been a season ticket holder for 5 years. FOREVER FAITHFUL!
Sorry mods - can we move this thread to the Draft room?
Originally posted by valrod33:

He don't want it with DMX
I really believe he is the type of under the radar player that Baalke likes to draft, I haven't seen any video of him at all. He did look good at the East West Shrine game workout
I just saw he led the country in 2012 in pass breakups, It looks like he has great catchup speed
I wrote this up on 2/14 in the Combine thread:

I really liked what I saw from Rice CB Phillip Gaines in some clips (Cortland Finnegan-type, IMO) and noticed that he was one of the top defenders in college football in 2012 regarding passes broken up (2nd only to Dee Milliner) and passes defended. But I noticed the stats in the 2013 Liberty Bowl that MSU star WR Jameon Lewis torched Rice for 9 catches and 220 yards. I had to see for myself how much of that was on Gaines. Turns out, none of it was on Gaines.

After a few series of Gaines blanketing Lewis for zero catches, MSU moved him to the slot and away from Gaines' press coverage. He proceeded to light it up until the game was out of reach. The only time Gaines was tested after they moved Lewis away from him, Gaines made a great play in the end zone batting the ball away. Essentially, they threw away from Gaines because his initial coverage on their top WR was perfect.

What I saw in that particular game is a guy who plays really good press coverage, has long arms to ride WRs off the LOS and enough speed to run down the field with them. He also breaks and the ball very quickly and isn't afraid to come up and play the run. He needs work on his tackling though, but that could be said about a lot of college corners.

Read more at http://www.49erswebzone.com/forum/nfl-draft/176644-2014-nfl-combine/page2/#ROiUSZWrxrwdggvV.99
I think if you make a thread on a player you should have weaknesses instead of all hype.
Originally posted by Since07:
I think if you make a thread on a player you should have weaknesses instead of all hype.

It's his step brother dude...
^ I'm not asking him to talk s**t jus provide things Gaines doesn't do well or can get better, otherwise every thread on a player is all hype.
I bumped Gaines up to a 2nd round prospect... and it wasn't just his blazing 40 time. Kid is a stud... looked smoother in the Combine drills than did the top 20 corners.. and looks that smooth and dominant in the Rice games that can be found on the web. I'd say his only flaw is he is only decent as a run-stopper. Looks good in man and zone... and I hope we have him on our target list on the 2nd day.


http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2013/dec/28/phillip-gaines-line-in-the-sand-sparks-rice/ ;
A 6-1 lockdown cornerback, he had 40 passes thrown his way this season with only 13 completions.
Originally posted by Since07:
I think if you make a thread on a player you should have weaknesses instead of all hype.

Well....when we were kids he use to cry every time I burned him in street ball. Keep in mind that I'm 4 years older than him and played high school football in Texas. Even when he was 12 he was a challenge to beat.

I got tired of him throwing temper tantrums so I let him win most of the time.
[ Edited by footballfreak49 on Mar 1, 2014 at 10:58 AM ]
Sounds like a solid prospect for the 49ers
I like Gaines a lot. He has a Tyrann Mathieu competitive fire in, without the pre-draft character flags. Bigger, and faster too. When you get into that 3rd tier of players, It's anyone's guess where these players can go, as players who are projected in the 4th can fall all the way to the 7th, or guys projected for the 7th go as early as the 4th.

With Pro Days still to come, it's difficult to pinpoint where Gaines would be projected. Before the combine, I tabbed him in the 6th. Afterwards, I could see a move up into the 4th as feasible. He's got the physical abilities, no doubt, but he's not a finished product and came from a lower level of competition at Rice. In a deep CB class, good corners are going to fall to places we may not expect.
Originally posted by OnTheClock:
I like Gaines a lot. He has a Tyrann Mathieu competitive fire in, without the pre-draft character flags. Bigger, and faster too. When you get into that 3rd tier of players, It's anyone's guess where these players can go, as players who are projected in the 4th can fall all the way to the 7th, or guys projected for the 7th go as early as the 4th.

With Pro Days still to come, it's difficult to pinpoint where Gaines would be projected. Before the combine, I tabbed him in the 6th. Afterwards, I could see a move up into the 4th as feasible. He's got the physical abilities, no doubt, but he's not a finished product and came from a lower level of competition at Rice. In a deep CB class, good corners are going to fall to places we may not expect.

Just as importantly, he's looked the part when he has stepped up in competition. When playing an SEC opponent in MSU, they stayed away from him most of the game and he made plays when they did challenge him. He stood out in the East West shrine game practices and (less importantly) in the game as well, and of course tested as well as any CB at the combine in terms of athleticism. He also looked smooth in the drills and displayed sure hands/ball skills.

For me, the one area he needs to work on is tackling as he didn't always wrap up and secure the runner. The effort was there, but he's got to work on tackling fundamentals. But in terms of pure cover ability, the speed to run with most WRs and the size/ball skills to make plays, IMO he's displayed enough to warrant 3rd round consideration.
[ Edited by GhostofFredDean74 on Mar 1, 2014 at 12:57 PM ]