2022 NFL Draft: Arizona State CB Chase Lucas scouting report

As we get closer to the draft, there are plenty of players to check out. Today’s focus is on Arizona State cornerback Chase Lucas.

Name: Chase Lucas
Post: CB
Height: 5’11”
Weight: 188 pounds

Chase Lucas career stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference

Combined results: 4.48 40-meter sprint, 39-inch vertical jump, 128-inch spread jump

Chase Lucas had a pretty unique path to the draft, and it’s a path that I’ve personally been fortunate enough to follow closely, having attended the same high school and college as Lucas while only being a year away. ‘difference. As a sophomore in high school, Lucas was called up from the JV team to fill in as running back due to injury issues. He played so well that Lucas became the full-time starter to end the year.

Soon after, Lucas began splitting his time between offense and defense, and he quickly became the 12th ranked athlete in his drafting class. Lucas opted to stay close to home and play for Arizona State despite offers from Notre Dame and Nebraska. With the Sun Devils, Lucas settled into the cornerback position, which he held for five consecutive seasons.

Lucas has quickly established himself as a ball hawk and one of the best cornerbacks in the Pac 12, which has seen him see a drastically reduced number of targets over the past two seasons. Lucas probably could have turned pro even after Arizona State only played four games in 2020 due to COVID-19, but he returned for his super senior season and showed some extra versatility playing in the slot. , as Lucas had mostly played away in previous years. Very few draft prospects in a year have as much tape as Lucas, which makes the relatively low buzz around him even more confusing.

Male coverage: Arizona State’s defense, led by NFL coaches Herm Edwards and Marvin Lewis, employed men’s coverage at a very high rate. As a result, the vast majority of Lucas’ shots are in men’s coverage, and that’s a good thing because he excels here. He has excellent footwork that allows him to stay close to the receiver at all times, and his elite blast traits – Lucas was third in all corners in both vertical and wide jumps at the reaper -thresher – allow exceptional closing speed.

Coverage area: Men’s coverage is definitely what Lucas excels at best, but he also defends in the zone. He has great instincts, which is what you would expect from someone as seasoned as he is, and it shows a lot in the zone when reading the quarterback’s eyes.

Playing ability: Lucas has a hawk-bullet mentality, and that’s why teams stopped pitching after a certain point. At 5’11” with arms just a hair below 32″, he’s not too long, but has the closing speed and physique to more than compensate and play aggressive at the point of capture. His running back experience also comes through after Lucas gets a takeaway, and he can be a dangerous runner in those situations.

Athletics : Lucas has a lot of athleticism. There are physical monsters in this draft that have surpassed him, but he’s still near the top in terms of top-level athleticism. His 10-yard spread on his 40-yard dash ranked in the 90th percentile, and we’ve already discussed his elite outburst. Lucas also plays with very fluid hips, which was a big reason why he looked like a natural play in the slot machine later in his college career.

Run the helper: At 5’11” and 188 pounds, you would expect that to be a weak point for Lucas. In fact, it’s probably his strongest area. Lucas seems to crave the physicality inherent in the sport. He shows no hesitation in tripping on the field in support of the run and has made significant progress as a tackler in his college career, becoming a very technically refined tackler. Due to his build, he’s not able to lay the wood down as often, but that’s never for lack of trying.

Treatment: It can be hard to tell how much of Lucas’ treatment is down to football IQ or just big instincts, but that’s not really a problem. He plays like a veteran, showing a great understanding of fairway concepts and double shots. He played in three very different schemes over his five years, and it never seemed like it was too much for him to handle.

Intangible assets: Lucas is a hard-working player, often making plays after running across the pitch or following things from behind. He was named team captain in his senior year at Arizona State and functioned as an on-field coach in how he mentored young players.

The reasons why Lucas isn’t more sought after are obvious: he’s undersized and already has plenty of tread on the tires. At least, that’s how some teams will see it. But the tape shows someone who plays a lot bigger than he measures, and with the difficulty of playing cornerback in the NFL, having that much experience should be considered a plus.

It’s hard not to be excited about Lucas’ work when you really look at him. I’m obviously biased, but Lucas plays with the physique, athleticism and fundamentals you want to see in a cornerback. He particularly excels in men’s coverage and has elite potential in the slot, although he can play outside just as well. In 10 games in 2021, Lucas hasn’t allowed a touchdown.

In Dallas, Lucas’ adjustment would be a bit of a hassle as the cornerback room is already quite crowded. Personally, I think Lucas has the most upside in the slot due to his fluidity and physicality, so bringing him in as a potential replacement for Jourdan Lewis (who has two years left on his contract) would be a lot of sense. Lucas’ accomplishments in men’s coverage also dovetail nicely with Dan Quinn’s diet preferences. Lucas is expected to be selected somewhere in the fourth or fifth round, although a team can press him in the third if they want him bad enough.

Amanda J. Marsh