2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Jaycee Hornby Mason Thompson February 28, 2021 4 comments
Jaycee Horn is one of the three consensus top prospects by many draft analysts. He is the son of former New Orleans Saints receiver Joe Horn. After primarily being a safety during his freshman season in 2018, Horn switched to the cornerback position. He started as a slot corner but then made the transition to an outside cornerback. Let’s see if the hype is warranted.
Make sure to check out all of our other 2021 NFL Draft Scouting Reports.
Name: Jaycee Horn
School: South Carolina
Weight: 205 lbs
Man Coverage (9.75/10)
Horn is one of the best man coverage cornerbacks to come out in quite some time. He is very physical at the line of scrimmage and is willing to let receivers know he is right there and will be the whole game. Horn was squared up one-on-one against the likes of Seth Williams, Elijah Moore, and Terrace Marshall Jr. during the 2020 season.
Zone Coverage (9.5/10)
He likely won’t play zone coverage more than man, but if he is tasked with doing so, Horn will do more than fine. He has the length to play in zone coverage and not cause much of an issue.
Change of Direction (8.75/10)
Look at the Auburn and Ole Miss games. Horn was tasked with following two great receivers and ones that are fairly shifty in their own right. He was step-by-step with them as they ran their routes the whole way. He has a few cases where he has tight hips in his transitions, but nothing too worrisome.
Ball Skills (9.75/10)
Watch the Auburn game in 2020. This game alone showed off his elite ball skills. With two interceptions and plenty of pass breakups, Horn showed his ball skills are amazing. For some reason, Bo Nix kept throwing his way. The battle between Horn and Williams was one of the best back-and-forth matchups of the season.
Horn is fluid in his transitions. He makes his coverages look easy, whether it be press-man, off-man, or in zone coverage.
Run Support (7.25/10)
As physical as Horn is in coverage, it doesn’t show up in his run defending. He seems to not want to get in on the action as a tackler, similar to C.J. Henderson last year. If there are other defenders around the ball-carrier, Horn is around the ball-carrier but is a bit lenient on wanting to make the tackle unless he has to as the last line of the defense.
Similar to his run defending, this isn’t as good as many would like. There are a lot of missed tackles on his film. He got better in this regard in 2020, but it was still a big weakness. Horn tries to grab an ankle or foot instead of fully wrapping up and driving through the ball-carrier.
Route Recognition (8.75/10)
With his dad being a former receiver, Horn has gotten to learn what route technicians will do. He seems to know what the receiver will do before they do it right in front of him.
Twitchy and has the long speed to match up with anyone. When he did make a tackle, he could do so from across the field, where he had to chase the runner down.
An alpha defender that isn’t afraid to talk about his play. Horn is scrappy and chirpy.
A small ankle injury during his freshman year in 2018 is the only injury he had during his collegiate career. Horn didn’t miss a game due to the injury.
Horn is one of the best cornerbacks in the class. His elite coverage and ball skills make up for the lack of a run defender and tackler that he is. It is unknown if Horn doesn’t put forth the effort here to avoid an injury, or if he isn’t confident in his ability to make tackles. In a pass-happy league, Horn’s strengths will far outweigh his weaknesses.
Final Grade (88/100): Mid First-Round