A lot of you are already hitting me up and asking why Greg hasn’t met with your favorite team
— Justin M (@JustinM_NFL) February 26, 2021
“[T]he 6’1”, 190 pound junior cornerback recorded 12 tackles (8 solo), an interception, and 9 pass breakups during 6 starts for the Wildcats in 2020—earning AP Third-Team All-American and First-Team All-Big Ten honors respectively.”
Here’s NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah’s scouting report on Newsome, who he currently ranks as the NFL Draft’s 31st best prospect overall:
Greg Newsome II
Northwestern · CB · Junior
Newsome is a tall, agile cornerback. He played a lot of off coverage in Northwestern’s scheme. He stays crouched in his pedal and is always under control. He’s fluid when he opens up to turn and carry vertical routes. He stays in phase and he can locate/play the ball. He doesn’t have an explosive plant/drive, but he does have the awareness to anticipate throws. He has excellent instincts versus the run and pass. Against the run, he will hang on blocks too long at times, but he is a solid tackler once he frees himself. I expect Newsome to develop into a reliable starting cornerback very early in his NFL career.
Here’s the latest draft nuggets on Newsome:
I feel comfortable ranking Greg Newsome in my top 5 DB’s in this class. That second play below shows how fast he transitions in coverage.
A playoff team is going to grab him and he’ll be an immediate contributor. https://t.co/CodmtNqpBK
— Devin Jackson (@RealD_Jackson) February 22, 2021
What an outstanding play by Greg Newsome defending the double move
— Ben Fennell (@BenFennell_NFL) February 22, 2021
greg newsome at No. 31. newsome gave up 12 catches in ’20. he broke up 9 passes. newsome’s patience and transitions are superb. a lotta CBs open up too early when they don’t have to. that’s a big reason why newsome contested so many throws. He’s a player. https://t.co/bfJgdyWT7g pic.twitter.com/GwZ6656nDd
— KP (@KP_Show) February 23, 2021
Greg Newsome is one of the best pure technical corners I’ve watched in this class. We’re talking about a guy who is a Top-50 talent here, especially since he’s going to make an instant impact given how polished.
Very well could make my Top-5 CBs in this class.
— Nick Farabaugh (@FarabaughFB) February 25, 2021
Top 5 CBs in 2021 NFL Draft:
1. Caleb Farley
2. Patrick Surtain
3. Ifeatu Melifonwu
4. Jaycee Horn
5. Greg Newsome
— Nick Farabaugh (@FarabaughFB) February 26, 2021
— Damian Parson (@DP_NFL) February 24, 2021
In the Super Bowl era (since 1967), Northwestern has never had two top-50 picks in the same draft. Slater and Newsome are likely going to change that. Two studs.
— Dane Brugler (@dpbrugler) February 16, 2021
Allowed the least amount of yards (83) in the country of CBs with at least 20 targets last year.
— Jordan Reid (@Jordan_Reid) February 9, 2021
#MyGuys – Prospects That I’m High On:
• Alijah Vera-Tucker
• Jaycee Horn
• Amari Rodgers
• Greg Newsome II
• Jaelon Darden
• Javonte Williams
• Elijah Molden
— Jordan Reid (@Jordan_Reid) February 23, 2021
Newsome was outstanding this season as a lockdown cover corner. In addition to the physical skill set, he’s got all the confidence in the world to do it on Sundays. Justin Fields wasn’t throwing his way on Saturday for a reason. https://t.co/6KukTqenpu
— Kevin Fishbain (@kfishbain) December 21, 2020
Northwestern’s Greg Newsome (@__gnewsss) emerged as a star in the Big Ten in 2020.
He’s among the top cornerback prospects in the 2021 NFL Draft pic.twitter.com/EoNWtFthDr
— CFB Film Room (@CFBFilmRoom) February 11, 2021
Northwestern CB Greg Newsome II over his last 3 games
▪️ 77 coverage snaps
▪️ 11 targets
▪️ 1 catch allowed (7 yards)
▪️ 1 INT pic.twitter.com/U55PELsJfu
— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) December 6, 2020
Greg Newsome II when targeted 10+ yards downfield:
1 reception allowed
0 TDs / 1 INT
11.8 passer rating pic.twitter.com/gwXxxG0cPe
— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) February 3, 2021
This Northwestern secondary is great. Both Brandon Joseph and AJ Hampton have played really well this year. Greg Newsome is one of the best CBs in the nation. Elite length, ball skills, and great at mirroring receivers. Should be a day 2 pick if he declares. #NFLDraft
— Jack Borowsky (@Jack_Borowsky) December 19, 2020
The Colts could really use another long-term answer at the starting outside cornerback position—as both veteran starters Xavier Rhodes (30) and T.J. Carrie (30) are set to hit free agency and are starting to get a little long in the tooth regardless if they’re ultimately re-signed (although each played well in their debut campaigns with the Colts in 2020).
2019 second round pick Rock Ya-Sin struggled during his ‘sophomore season’—having been overly grabby and physical, when he didn’t need to be—as he was generally in good position to still make a play in coverage.
Meanwhile, another promising (would-be) second-year cornerback, Marvell Tell, sat out the entire 2020 season because of COVID-19 concerns—and may need an adjustment period to shake off any rust after a year of football inactivity.
It’s unclear whether the Colts value cornerbacks enough in their zone dominant scheme to select a top prospect at the position in the first round, but Newsome is about as polished and ready to contribute as almost any rookie cornerback in this year’s draft class.
That being said, the Colts may be able to trade down and recoup some draft pick(s) lost in the recent Carson Wentz trade—and select Newsome a few spots later than at #21 overall.
He fits what they’re looking for at cornerback though—long, fluid covering routes, very instinctive, featuring ball skills, and is a willing tackler in run support.
(Now, if there were just some indications of his actual arm measurements—although he looks to have more than enough requisite length.)
Newsome’s among the top cornerback prospects to monitor for the Colts ahead of late April’s NFL Draft—as he’s NFL ready, fills a need, and still has upside to grow and develop into one of the league’s better to elite starting outside cornerbacks.