NFL Draft 2022 Scouting Report: CB Tariq Woolen, UTSA

*CB grades can and will change as more information comes in from Pro Day workouts, Wonderlic test results leaked, etc. We will update info as it becomes available. 


As soon as I saw the official size of Tariq Woolen at the Senior Bowl, after previewing some of his scouting tape ahead of the event…I was ‘in like’ with Woolen. I love a big…tall…lengthy cornerback who can move. Who doesn’t? As the wide receiver talent becomes better than ever in college-to-the-NFL, through all their passing game training since kindergarten, it’s only natural that the cornerbacks get more talented as well. The 7-on-7 era has created a surge in supply of talented QBs, WRs…and CBs.

Woolen began his UTSA career as a wide receiver but moved to corner in his sophomore season and stayed there since…a 6’4”/205, fast wide receiver doesn’t stand out like he would have years ago – but a 6’4”/205 corner is still pretty eye-catching/attention getting.

I set out for my deeper study on Woolen with great anticipation – I already loved the tall guy-athletic CB prospects in Ahmad Gardner and Zyon McCollum, so I was ready for the hat trick with Woolen! But after studying Woolen deeper…there was no hat trick. Woolen does not belong in the same breath as either Gardner or McCollum.

Gardner is in a class all his own, and everyone is onboard…so, the proper context for Woolen is Sam Houston State’s Zyon McCollum – Woolen and McCollum both are freakishly tall (for CBs) and have high-end speed. Woolen dropped a 4.26 40-time at the Combine, which is stunning at 6’4”/205. Both Woolen and McCollum (4.33 at the Combine) got lumped into the ‘tall, fast guys we don’t know…so we’ll just hold it against them that they didn’t play in a major conference’ category for analysts. Which also means they are one of the 700 annual draft ‘sleepers’ for draftniks, who understand the Combine times/info.

But there’s an important distinction between Woolen and McCollum, for me, after studying both…and pre-liking both back to the Senior Bowl…

Zyon McCollum has star potential…maybe superstar potential. Real speed on the field, strong/sturdy, physical, excellent cover/mirroring skills, mature/smart. McCollum is one of the best prospects, regardless of position, in the 2022 NFL Draft…in my book.

Tariq Woolen has upside hope because he’s tall and 40-time fast, but he is nothing like McCollum. Woolen is thinner-framed, straight-line fast but not as fast on the field …he’s more awkward looking, gangly in movements, and he has average or worse agility times/skills…plus he’s not that sharp a player. He doesn’t cover WRs nearly as well as McCollum (among others). Woolen has a lot of work to do at his craft, and I’m not sure he has the maturity or makeup or talent to do so…whereas McCollum is ready to go now.

It's somewhat unfair to compare Woolen to McCollum, for me, because I hold McCollum in high regard. And I’m not saying Woolen is without any draft merit, he is worthy. There are not many CBs in history with his size and anywhere near his speed – Woolen has gifts that are unteachable…you then hope to work with him on the techniques, etc. But when I watched Woolen’s tape and going back over his Senior Bowl week – Woolen is just all-straight speed and great reach (weak on agility and mirroring/technique), and that can carry a CB in certain situations but he’s not showing immediate signs of a #1, or #2, cornerback right away in the NFL. It was McCollum who earned a starting role at the Senior Bowl game, with Woolen behind him as a 2nd-team cornerback.

Woolen deserves attention for his physique, but there are real holes in cover ability and fluidity in movement. Definitely draft-worthy…but definitely a ‘project’.



Tariq Woolen, Through the Lens of Our CB Scouting Algorithm:

 -- Number of CB prospects who have clocked in the 4.2s at the NFL Combine in my database of the past 15+ years = 9 of them.

Number of CB prospects who have clocked in the 4.2s at 6’0”+ = 4 of them.

Number of CB prospects who have run in the 4.2s at 200+ pounds = 1 of them…Woolen, that’s it. Jalen Myrick did so at 200 pounds even. If you wanna count that. Still, Woolen exists in very rarefied air on his size and speed combo.

 -- We have seen a few 6’3”+ CB prospects over the years, and they always stand out (visually) but we haven’t seen any become ‘wow’/stars. Recent names include Nahshon Wright, Benjamin St-Juste, Chris Westry, JoeJuan Williams, Simeon Thomas, Israel Mukuamu.

 -- Only 9 PDs credited to Woolen the past two seasons as a full/starting CB (18 games) – he’s not racking up passes defended like you think he would.

And just two picks…he has very shaky hands, thus the move from WR-to-CB.




2022 NFL Combine Measurables:

6’4.1”/205, 9.1” hands, 34” arm

4.26 40-time, 2.49 20-yard, 1.47 10-yard

4.3 shuttle, 7.1 three-cone

12 bench press, 10’11” broad, 42” vertical



The Historical CB Prospects to Whom Tariq Woolen Most Compares Within Our System:

I thought Isaiah Johnson was going to be a promising ‘tall, fast guy’ CB prospect…and he has had a few moments in the league, but he’s mostly failed on ‘not good enough cover skills’. He did play some safety last year. Woolen is likely not going to be a safety at any point, but it’s not out of the question.

Woolen comps with promising, hopeful, false flag tall-guy corner prospects of the past…which gives me good reason to worry..


CB Grade



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Cover Rating

Speed Metrics

Agility Metric

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*The ratings are based on a 1–10 rating scale, but a prospect can score over 10.0+ and less than 0.0

OVERALL RATING -- We merge the data from physical measurables, skill times/counts from the NFL Combine/Pro Days, with college performance data available on pass coverage/tackles, etc. and grade it compared to our database history of all college CBs, with a focus on which CBs went on to be good-great-elite in the NFL. We found characteristics/data points that the successful NFL CBs had in common in college, that most other CB prospects could not match/achieve.

Scoring with a rating over a 7.00+ in our system is where we start to take a CB prospect more seriously. Most of the future NFL successful college CBs scored 8.00+, and most of the NFL superior CBs pushed scores more in the 9.00+ levels...and future NFL busts will sneak in there from time to time. 10.00+ is where most of the elite NFL CBs tend to score in our system analysis.

COVERAGE -- A combination of on-field data/performance and physical profile data

SPEED -- Measurables from a perspective of straight-line speed, burst, etc.

AGILITY -- Measurables for lateral movements, quick cuts, body type, speed, etc. 

POWER -- A look at physical size, tackling productivity in college, other physical measurables. One of the side benefits/intentions here, is to see which CBs may be more of a model for a conversion to playing safety successfully in the NFL. Also denotes CBs who are more physical/will have higher tackle totals...over pure speed/coverage CBs.



2022 NFL Draft Outlook:

I see some rating services with Woolen in their top 50-75 overall, and others with him outside the top 100. It’s going to be a tough call on him going inside the top 100 overall – the size/speed Combine is going to attract people, but the actual skills on the field are worrisome. In the end, he’s such a freak of physical speed and size, he probably sneaks into the top 100 overall…but it’s no sure bet.

If I were an NFL GM, I’m likely ‘passing’ on Woolen…mostly because there are CB draft bargains with great talent all over this draft. If any team, when any team takes Woolen over Zyon McCollum…that team’s scout/personnel guy should be fired. Ditto if any team takes Woolen over Marcus Jones. I’m trading up to take McCollum and Jones and ignoring Woolen in the same pool of CBs.



NFL Outlook:   

A project…a project who may be forced into playing time in nickel or dime situations because of his size and speed ability. You can make up for a lot of sins with reach and long speed. Whether he becomes a true #1 or #2 corner starter…I don’t see it, but he’s worth a shot to see if it can be developed.

It doesn’t look like he has the juice or fluid movements, or frame to be a return man…or a surprise move to WR, aside from maybe some end zone shots on a trick play…with his 6’4” height and 42” vertical…but he can’t catch the ball that well, so…what’s the point?