Toledo Cornerback being Drafted Over Terrion Arnold and Kool-Aid Mckinstry?

Terrion Arnold and Kool-Aid McKinstry are two names that folks across the college football landscape have grown accustomed to hearing as they have locked things down in the secondary for the Alabama Crimson Tide the past few years. Quinyon Mitchell from Toledo however is not. Despite this, Mitchell is projected by many to be drafted over the duo from the Tide. In this article, I go into why this may be a huge mistake for one NFL team.
Mar 1, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Alabama defensive back Terrion Arnold (DB02) works out during
Mar 1, 2024; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Alabama defensive back Terrion Arnold (DB02) works out during / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Quinyon Mitchell. That is the name of the cornerback from the Toledo Rockets who is expected to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft this Thursday evening. He was actually only one of 13 players selected to attend the draft, which is quite impressive.

Also impressive, or ridiculous some may say is the fact that he is projected by many to go as the first cornerback in the draft. That’s right- that means he would be drafted ahead of names like Alabama’s Terrion Arnold and Kool-Aid McKinstry.

Mitchell first burst onto the scene for the Rockets two years ago in a game against Ohio State where he was assigned to cover Marvin Harrison Jr., who is projected to be the first wide receiver taken in this year’s NFL Draft.

During his three seasons as a starter with the Rockets, Mitchell totaled 116 tackles and six interceptions. This is actually more than McKinstry who totaled 93 tackles and only two interceptions. Arnold started only two seasons from the Tide, but his average per year was much higher.

However, Arnold and McKinstry played in the power five SEC which is the argument from Many. And the competition level there is inarguably much higher with NFL talent across the conference compared to the of the MAC which Mitchell played in. Not to mention as well that Arnold and McKinstry were not targeted a lot later in their careers due to their lock down coverage.

Additionally, Arnold and McKinstry were both coached by former Alabama head coach, Nick Saban whose pedigree is coaching the secondary specifically.

You would figure that having at least a few seasons worth of SEC experience, combined with being coached by the greatest of all-time would trump at least Arnold over Mitchell in the draft. And it just may. But for now, we will have to wait and see.