2013 NFL Draft: Darius Slay could be drafted over Johnthan Banks

Spruce Derden-US PRESSWIRE

The two Mississippi State cornerbacks may be ranked in a different order than most expect.

Mississippi State cornerback Johnthan Banks got most of the attention in Starkville, Miss., this season. The lanky, athletic defensive back has long been considered one of the top players at his position in the senior class. But his teammate and fellow cornerback Darius Slay is the one that has been picking up steam as the draft approaches.

Slay elevated his draft stock in a big way at the NFL Scouting Combine, according to Tony Pauline. In fact, Pauline said it's not out of the question that Slay could be drafted over Banks at this point.

While Banks clocked in at a 4.61 in the 40-yard dash, Slay ran a blazing 4.36, showcasing more fluidity than his teammate. Banks' speed and over-aggressive playing style have raised some questions in recent weeks, and the combine didn't do anything to quiet his critics.

Neither Banks or Slay appear to be a first-round prospect at this point in the process, but Pauline thinks that more cornerbacks than people expect will wind up drafted in the first 100 picks. He also mentioned a lack of big-money paydays on the horizon for the top free agent cornerbacks on the market this season.

Slay will have another chance to outshine backs at Mississippi State's pro day on Wednesday, March 6.

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