Full credit to John Vogel (@johndavogel) for being the first to bring RHD to my attention as a guy I NEEDED to watch. I did, and I am very glad. 5’10, 185lbs, and a mock pro day timed a 4.39 40. A quick once over showed me an elite quickness athlete, so I dove deeper into the tape to see what kind of prospect he could be on Sundays.
Strengths: RHD, as stated above, is an elite athlete when it comes to speed and twitchiness. His hips are fluid in transition, man coverage is his forte as he effortlessly mirrors the best athletes the opposition puts in front of him. His ball skills are exceptional, tracking through the catch point not only to deflect but create turnovers comes natural. Shows excellent technique when left on an island in man coverage. While slight in frame, he is a more than willing and capable tackler. Effort will not be a reason to ever consider him a liability in the run game. Instincts are apparent in coverage overall, adequate awareness of where the football is as the play progresses.
Weaknesses: Even in press man, tends to give up free releases at the line of scrimmage, would like to see him try to knock receivers off the route and trust his athleticism to recover if needed. Should be noted there are good examples of this, just not consistently shown. Poor vertical combined with natural lack of size makes him a target against bigger receivers and probably limits him to a nickel role. Not sure he will be comfortable in zone schemes early on. Level of competition is almost unfair given the lack of opportunity to compete against higher competition, but a concern nonetheless.
Overall Outlook: Put Reid Harrison-Ducros in the nickel and let him prosper. There will likely be a rough acclimation period and he needs to develop a comfort outside of man coverage, but the all the ability and talent is there to succeed. I believe he could start as a rookie and do well if schemed correctly. RHD is going to finish as my #10 overall corner, he projects exclusively as a nickel right now but in the modern NFL, that is a starter position. Guys who are playmakers and sticky in man coverage are coveted by defensive coordinators for good reason, and that’s who Reid Harrison-Ducros is. Don’t let the small school or frame fool you, this kid can play football.