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So You Drafted Grant Haley...

Despite his lack of size, this cornerback could make a large impact on both defense and special teams in the NFL.

NCAA Football: Pittsburgh at Penn State Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

The Skinny

Grant Haley was an impact player at Penn State from his first year on campus, and went on to be a part of one of the greatest special teams plays in Penn State history, and has put himself firmly in the NFL Draft conversation.

The cornerback returned a then-Nittany Lion record 34 kickoffs as a freshman in 2014 and had more than 650 return yards, while making 18 tackles on defense. Haley also returned his first career interception 30 yards for a touchdown against Temple. As a sophomore, the Georgia native started 11 games and picked off two passes. Haley’s junior year was not his most statistically significant (partially due to him missing the first four games), but he certainly made the biggest impact on the field against both Ohio State... well as Wisconsin...

Haley was named captain prior to senior year. His 2017 season started off well against Pittsburgh, picking off a pass to set up a touchdown and sacking quarterback Max Browne, leading to another score. This prompted a certain writer to make a bold claim regarding Haley’s career. Haley was selected as a Thorpe Award semifinalist and finished with 40 tackles and two sacks, as well as the aforementioned interception.

What You’re Getting

Haley ran a 4.44 40-yard dash at the Combine, and was described by Mike Mayock as “one of the most undervalued defensive backs in the draft.” At just 5’9’’, Haley may not see the field as a starter, but could make an immediate impact at both nickel corner and on special teams, where he first got his start at Penn State. Currently he is projected to land in either round five or six in this year’s draft.

NFL Draft Profile