2023 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Emmanuel Forbes

  • Emmanuel Forbes, 6-0/180

  • Cornerback

  • Mississippi State

  • Emmanuel Forbes Scouting Report
    By Charlie Campbell

  • Instinctive
  • Tremendous ball skills
  • Dangerous interception skills, a true ballhawk
  • Soft hands
  • Threat to take the ball away
  • Knows what to do with the ball after making an interception
  • Very fast
  • Excellent closing speed
  • Recoverability
  • Good route recognition
  • Can run the route with the receiver
  • Consistently prevents separation
  • Makes big plays in zone coverage
  • Smart covers up receivers in his area
  • Gritty defender
  • Willing tackler
  • Can play zone coverage
  • Can play off man coverage
  • Athletic upside
  • Experienced

  • Weaknesses:
  • Alarmingly skinny
  • Thin build
  • Extremely thin lower body
  • Will get pushed around
  • Not a fit for press man

  • Summary: Forbes spent the last three seasons as one of the most dangerous cornerbacks to throw at in college football. Racking up 14 interceptions over three years, Forbes is a dynamic ball hawk with the ability to change the game at any time. In 2020, Forbes broke out with 44 tackles, five interceptions, six pass breakups and three touchdowns. In 2021, he totaled 59 stops, three interceptions and five passes broken up. As a junior in 2022, Forbes recorded six interceptions, three touchdowns, 11 passes broken up and 46 tackles.

    For the NFL, Forbes is a dangerous playmaker and is a threat to make a game-changing play whenever a quarterback throws his direction. He has superb instincts with rare and phenomenal ball skills. Forbes also has soft hands and will routinely bring in circus catches. It feels like Forbes has magnets in his hands. When Forbes makes a catch, his speed takes over, and he is a serious threat to score with the ball in his hands. Forbes was a pick-six phenom for Mississippi State and showed excellent return skills.

    One of the things that makes Forbes so dangerous and effective is his speed. He is extremely fast to break on the ball, and his speed gives him good recoverability to close gaps as well. With an easy glide, Forbes flies around the field and has a serious burst out of a break. He could be an asset in the NFL to defend speed receivers thanks to his ability to cover them over the top and stay with them out of breaks.

    The big issue for Forbes in the NFL is his size. He is rail-thin, including an alarmingly skinny lower body. That could really hurt his ability to defend, big, physical receivers and keep them from boxing him out. While Forbes is a willing tackler, being so thinly framed presents a danger that he will suffer injury and fail to hold up at the pro level. He contributed well to run defense for the Bulldogs, but with his small build, he could have issues tackling at the next level.

    In the 2023 NFL Draft, Forbes has a shot at being a late first-round pick. However, he is probably more likely to be selected on Day 2.

    Player Comparison: Cobie Durant. Durant (5-11, 180) and Forbes are almost identical in size, and both have good ball skills. Durant was a fourth-round pick in part because he played at a small school. However, Durant had a nice rookie season for the Rams.


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