We covered what NFL scouts look for in cornerbacks.  Now let’s take a quick  look at some cornerback drills you can do to get better at some of the skills scouts are looking for.

In case you missed those posts:

Cornerback Tips – What NFL Scouts Look For in Cornerbacks Part 1

Cornerback Tramon Williams, of the Green Bay Packers. (ICON Sports)

Cornerback Tips – What NFL Scouts Look For in Cornerbacks Part 2

Knowing what they look for is cool, but I think we need to take it a step further and take some action on this info!


If you’re like most guys that have dreams of playing pro football, you might have to train yourself. To help you out, I’ve gathered a bunch of drills that can help you as a corner.

But not just any drills, my friend.  These drills’ll help you get better at most of the specific things NFL scouts look for when analyzing cornerbacks.

A lot of drills require equipment of some kind, but to help those on a budget, the drills below need little-to-no equipment to be purchased.

Disclaimer: If you’re injured, or have health issues, please consult with a doctor before doing any of this stuff. I, nor Get2TheLeague.com is responsible if you hurt yourself, or tear-up your mom’s house trying to do these drills.


Football Speed/40 Yard Dash Speed


There’s a difference between football speed and running a fast 40.  There’s a lot of guys that don’t play fast, but run a 4.4 40 yard dash in a t-shirt and shorts.

Don’t get me wrong, you want to do both well, but football speed is the more important of the two.

Matter of fact, we did a post on improving football speed.  Check it out:

What Everybody Ought to know about Football Speed

This guy gives some really effective 40 yard dash tips.

I really wish I knew some of this stuff back when I was trying out for teams back in my hey day.

I was really impressed with the information in this video.  He offers you a strategy of every single piece of the 40; but from the perspective of the scouts or personnel that’s timing you in the 40.


The more you know (and apply) about their philosophy regarding how they time, the better.  He then gives you a strategy to use to run the 40, that’s based on how they time the 40.

The guy in this video introduces some strategies for you to use when you’re running the 40, along with examples of specific exercises you should be doing to get faster in the 40 yard dash.

If you’re a football player, you should be familiar with the names of the exercises that he mentions.

If you’re not, you may want to try Google’ing the terms and exercises he mentions to become more familiar.




Some great defensive back-specific drills in this video.


Check out these drills.  This guy’s footwork is phenomenal.


DB-specific footwork/ball skill drill.


Oh my goodness…  this guy’s footwork is bananas.  Awesome drill work.


This drill will help you get your feet right as well.

The dot drill is one of my all-time favorite footwork drills.


Coverage Skills/Man-to-Man


All-Pro cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha instructs on proper man-to-man technique.


Vintage footage of Denver Bronco defensive backs in the 1980’s, playing press man-to-man coverage in 1-on-1’s with Bronco receivers.

Their technique isn’t always perfect, but it gives you a good idea of what a pro db should look like in press coverage.


NFL cornerback Marcus Trufant schoolin’ you on proper press technique.


Some more 1980’s Denver Broncos footage… this time the DB’s are using off-man technique


Ball Skills


Former UCLA DB Kai Oredugba goes through an assortment of drills, including some ball drills towards the end of the video.video

This drill will help you make better breaks on the ball, and gets you used to competing with the receiver for the ball after you make a break on it.  – (courtesy networkofcoaches.com)

This drill helps you get used to using the right technique (whether you’re in-phase, or out-of-phase) when you’re defending a player while the ball’s in the air.  – (courtesy networkofcoaches.com)


Quickness/Change of Direction


The video below introduces the 2-3-2-3 drill, which’ll help you with your lateral agility and quickness.

They’re using speed hurdles, but you should be able to find something (or make something) around the house that you can use instead.

This drill is designed to help you develop the lateral speed you’ll need to excel as a corner.

This drill reminds me of my db days back in college.  We used to do this one in individual period pretty often.  (courtesy networkofcoaches.com)

I really like the drills in this video.  Just watching these guys perform these drills makes it pretty obvious that they can help you change directions on a dime. (courtesy athletesbydesign.com)


Key and Diagnose


This video is an overview on tips for the cornerback position, but from about the 1:00 mark, to the 1:45 mark, he gives you some tips on how to read receivers and quarterbacks.  (Courtesy – Expert Village)

This video gives you more tips on how to read the keys that quarterbacks give you.  (Courtesy – Expert Village)

This video reiterates some of the same points made in the one above, but adds a little more detail on reading the quarterback.  (Courtesy – Expert Village)

Yet another informative video from Expert Village on reading keys.  This one goes over the basics of reading the quarterbacks eyes to get good jumps on the ball.

Now why in the world would I post a video on route running, in a post on cornerback training?

Because if you pay attention to what former former NFL wideout Wendell Davis is teaching, he’s telling you a few of the keys wide receivers will often give you that you can clue off of.  (Courtesy ProTips4U.com)


Disclaimer #2: Again, I’m not a trainer, I just gathered a bunch of training materials that cover drills and exercises that can help you improve in the specific areas that NFL scouts tend to look for when analyzing cornerbacks.

Also, keep in mind that there are tons of drills out there you can use to get better at these areas, however many of them require equipment, and I did my best to include those that needed little-to-no equipment..

By the way, here’s a link to part 2!

Remember, the info only helps you if you use it, so get off your butt and make it happen!

Let’s go!

Follow me on Twitter!  @alvingrier

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What other drills do you recommend for corners?  Leave a comment! 

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