LSU cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. burst onto the scene as a freshman and many NFL Draft predictions at the time had him as a potential top-five selection. Unfortunately, the 2021 season did not go quite to plan, as Stingley played just three games. Injuries have been a major concern for Stingley in the past two seasons, but what are his potential landing spots in the 2022 NFL Draft?
NFL Draft Predictions: Potential landing spots for Derek Stingley Jr.
There is a lot for Stingley to prove to teams ahead of the 2022 NFL Draft. He has been cleared to do all the drills at the LSU Pro Day, which certainly helps. Additionally, he could have further opportunities to impress potential suitors during team visits in April.
There is a lot to be impressed with in Stingley’s game. He is a superb athlete who can hang with the quickest receivers he saw in college. However, his footwork means he can also be effective against the top-end route runners. Stingley’s 6 interceptions as a freshman demonstrated his explosiveness when jumping routes and making plays. He will hope to prove that the speed, agility, and short-area power are still in his game ahead of the draft at the end of April. Let’s look at which teams might be eyeing Stingley as a potential landing spot with our NFL Draft predictions.
New York Jets
When you look at the 2022 NFL Draft order, there is a run of teams that need to address the cornerback position. The Jets are one such team, and with two top-10 picks, they are perfectly positioned to do so with one of their selections. The Jets also have needs to address at safety, linebacker, wide receiver, and pass rusher. Outside of linebacker, all of those positions have options inside the top 10.
If the Jets decide to look at either safety, pass rusher, or wide receiver with the fourth pick, they could look at cornerback at pick 10. Stingley would be an interesting playmaker in the Jets’ defense. He would have a chance to start in Week 1 and make an intriguing pairing with D.J. Reed.
The Vikings tried to address the CB position in free agency, but the long-term future of the position is certainly not set. Patrick Peterson and Chandon Sullivan are the likely starting duo right now. However, both are on one-year deals, and their additions tell you the Vikings have limited faith in their other options.
If the Vikings drafted Stingley, they could allow him to learn behind another former LSU cornerback who brings a wealth of experience. The Vikings would not need to rush Stingley onto the field as a starter, but he would be a fantastic early-season rotational piece with the potential to start at midseason.
The Texans have a ton of needs to address all over their roster. They really could go anywhere with their two selections in the first round. The third pick is likely too high for Stingley right now. If the Texans use that selection on a cornerback, most NFL Draft predictions suggest it would be Cincinnati’s Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner coming off the board.
However, if they address another position with the third pick, Stingley could be an ideal option with pick 13. Playing opposite Desmond King over the next two years would give Stingley a solid veteran to learn from and someone with whom he could form a fantastic pairing. Getting King and Stingley together could mean the Texans’ defensive back is a force to be reckoned with in 2023, if not as early as 2022.
The Ravens always seem to be on the hunt for one more cornerback. No matter how good their group looks, they seem to be willing to invest in improving it. With Marcus Peters potentially on his way out after 2022, Stingley could be a fantastic long-term partner to Marlon Humphrey.
Humphrey can play in the slot, which could mean we see Stingley start early in 2022. A trio of Stingley, Humphrey, and Peters would undoubtedly be a strong trio. Playing in a division with Deshaun Watson and Joe Burrow, having good play at the cornerback position will be crucial, especially as the Ravens have to face Stingley’s former teammates in Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase at least twice a year for the foreseeable future.
The Eagles have a fantastic opportunity to add talent around a solid core on their roster in the 2022 NFL Draft. They blew up previous NFL Draft predictions when they made a blockbuster trade with the New Orleans Saints. However, Philadelphia still has two first-round selections this year.
Cornerback has to be top of that list of needs. Darius Slay is a solid No. 1 option, but the mix of Avonte Maddox and Zech McPhearson alongside him is less than convincing. Stingley would have a great opportunity to instantly impact the Eagles, which is the type of contributor they need after making the playoffs last year. Philadelphia may prioritize other needs with their first-round selections, but the choice really should be a CB.