Weight: 195 pounds
School: Notre Dame Fighting Irish
Julian Love 2019 NFL Draft Profile
Three-year Notre Dame Fighting Irish cornerback Julian Love is looking to break into the NFL after a productive collegiate tenure. A consensus All-American in 2018, Love finished his junior season with 16 passes defended, one interception, and 63 tackles while playing strong coverage throughout the entire season. Notre Dame made it to a second consecutive bowl game in large part due to Love’s fantastic play on the outside.
Love initially arrived at Notre Dame prior to the 2016 season. Making the team as a true freshman, the Illinois native appeared in 12 games, recording one interception, three passes defended, and 45 tackles. Love’s role grew as a sophomore, as he recorded three interceptions, defended 20 passes, and recorded 68 tackles while playing in 13 games.
Love spent his high school tenure playing football at Nazareth Academy in LaGrange Park, IL. Playing cornerback and running back, Love finished his senior season with 92 tackles, 1,067 rushing yards, and 18 touchdowns. This impressive performance earned him Football Player of the Year honors from the Chicago Sun-Times and made him a four-star recruit out of high school.
- capable of sticking with receivers in man coverage;
- isn’t afraid to get physical, uses hands to effectively re-route wide receivers;
- smart, instinctive player who shows an advanced understanding of route concepts;
- impressive ball skills, get hands on a high percentage of balls his way;
- strong tackler.
- lacks elite size and speed for the position;
- bites on double moves and is slow to recover;
- tends to get too physical in man coverage, which could lead to penalties in the NFL;
- average acceleration makes him limited in deep zone coverage;
- struggles to shed blockers in the run game.
NFL Comparison: Jalen Mills
Teams With A Need: Oakland Raiders, Kansas City Chiefs, San Francisco 49ers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Atlanta Falcons, Cincinnati Bengals
Projection: Rounds two – three
Love projects as a decent starting cornerback in the right system. His physical play and man coverage skills ensure that he belongs somewhere in the NFL. Love’s brains and overall instincts just add to his package and help him get the most out of his admittedly average athleticism.
However, Love has a few glaring holes in his game which won’t be easy to fix. His average speed and athleticism make him a liability when playing deep zone, meaning that he probably won’t fit with any teams trying to run a cover one zone scheme. Additionally, Love has a tendency to bite on double moves, and his lack of acceleration makes it hard for him to recover. His physical hand fighting is one of his calling cards, but he tends to get too aggressive and could draw flags at the NFL level.
Love is not a perfect prospect, but he can be a good cornerback in the right scheme. Starting cornerbacks aren’t easy to find, and the Notre Dame product could compete for a day one starting job. He’ll never be an All-Pro, but Love has the ability to be a league-average starter on a good defense.
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