Scouting the 2020 NFL Draft: Adversity has shaped LSU CB Kristian Fulton

LSU cornerback Kristian Fulton (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
LSU cornerback Kristian Fulton (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images) /
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LSU cornerback Kristian Fulton
LSU cornerback Kristian Fulton (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /


Kristian Fulton has the traits to be a top of the line zone cornerback in the NFL, but he has to clean up his technique. In off man and zone coverages, Fulton gets sloppy with his technique, which results in him being late to the catch point. When backpedaling, he’s inconsistent at staying low and balanced, often playing high and on his heels.

It led to easy catches over the middle and in the short areas of the field lacking the explosion and taking false steps to come downhill. When in bail technique, there were too many instances when he would get lazy and allow receivers to work into his blind spot for accessible comeback routes.

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While Fulton might be the best cornerback in the class at forcing pass breakups, he lacks the ability to track the ball over his shoulder in the deep portions of the field. He tends to drift out of phase and take poor adjustments to the ball in the air leading to significant gains over the top. It also leads to him getting too grabby in the deep portions of the field, trying to get back in phase.

The LSU product is hard to shake when playing press-man coverage, but skilled route runners will give him trouble on multiple breaking routes. Fulton takes too long to attempt his recovery and doesn’t have the elite speed to catch up downfield.

Fulton is a better prospect coming into the draft than Greedy Williams a year ago, but one of the reasons Williams fell to the second round was his run support. Like Greedy, Fulton lacks the desire to get physical in the run game. He’s not all that interested in tackling or setting a firm edge. When he does go for tackles, he leads with his helmet down, leaping at the runner’s ankles leading to missed tackles.

Adequate play strength shows up when trying to disengage from blockers and against bigger, physical receivers at the catch point. Players that won with physicality at the catch point gave him fits, including the National Championship game against Clemson. To have success in the NFL as a boundary cornerback, Fulton is going to have to become more physical and build some play strength to keep up with the top receivers in the league.