With an extended amount of time spent on 7-on-7 drills Sunday afternoon, rookie CB Chris Cook was able to make a number of impressive defensive stops, including 3 INTs.
Cook, who recorded 7 INTs during his career at Virginia (4 INTs his senior year), proved during Sunday afternoon’s practice that he is well-equipped to nab an INT at the pro level by pulling in 2 INTs off the throws of Sage Rosenfels and 1 from rookie QB Joe Webb.
The 1 pick that I saw up close and personal – and likely the most impressive of the day – had rookie WR Taye Biddle running a fade route from the 10-yard line into the left corner of the end zone. On the throw from Rosenfels, Cook got turned around by a quick move from Biddle but was able to adjust in time to make a leaping grab for the INT in the back of the end zone and then ran 107 yards down the left sideline to finish the play.
“He has made a variety of different plays down the field,” Head Coach Brad Childress said of Cook during the post practice press conference. “A lot of the time they say defensive backs are wide receivers that couldn’t catch. He can catch, which is important because those are turnovers going the other way. You are seeing the length show up with his size, his reach and for being a tall guy he’s got a pretty good drive. I think he’ll continue to keep on developing.”
Childress also felt that Cook’s size (6-2, 212 pounds) will be an advantage, especially in the red zone where teams like to throw the fade route, which was the scenario in Sunday afternoon’s practice when Cook picked off Rosenfels in the end zone.
“When you throw to spots sometimes those smaller defensive players can’t get to those spots just by virtue of their foot speed and their height,” Childress said. “He [Cook] is making some plays on some balls that are thrown in pretty decent spots.”
With the addition of veteran CB Lito Sheppard and already having 12-year veteran Antoine Winfield on the roster, Cook is blessed to have a pair of CBs who have been in the league for so long and will be able to learn from 2 of the premier CBs in the NFL.
“Chris is making great strides,” Sheppard said. “He’s making a lot of plays on the ball when given the opportunity. It’s just about him getting the feel for the game and slowing it down.”
Tags: Chris Cook, Lito Sheppard
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