Through the years, the USC Trojans have a history of elite defensive backs in the NFL. Senior cornerback Iman Marshall is looking to add to that history. In a draft class that is pretty loaded at the cornerback position, Marshall is starting to catch some scouts’ eyes.
Weight: 207 pounds
Arms: 30 3/8 inches
Hands: 9 1⁄2 inches
Bench: 16 reps
40-Yard Dash: 4.53 seconds
Coming into college Iman ‘‘Biggie” Marshall had a reputation of being a physical cornerback, thanks to his size advantage which is not common at the position. Marshall often saw a lot of targets during his freshman and senior season, due to opposing quarterbacks not wanting to test Adoree Jackson on the other side of him. Those targets diminished during his junior and senior season due to other quarterbacks throwing away from his side. Marshall would match up with most of the conference’s top wide receivers every game. His ability to jam and re-route receivers is what has NFL scouts so interested.
Last season, Marshall allowed the fewest yards per snap by a cornerback in the Pac-12, according to Pro Football Focus. He has also been one of the highest graded cornerbacks in the Pac-12 per Pro Football Focus.
Iman Marshall was tops in the Pac-12 this season by allowing only 0.60 yards per snap. He was joined by teammate Ajene Harris, who was 4th at 0.98. pic.twitter.com/2Cu2QjbW63— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) March 23, 2019
With Marshall being a physical cornerback, it often has its disadvantages. The senior cornerback is often penalized for pass interference and holding. Marshall has been penalized a total of 16 times the last two seasons at USC. He’s also had issues giving up the big play due to his lack of closing speed. Something that was displayed during his junior year with the Trojans, where he also battled injuries. The last two seasons, Marshall has had issues staying healthy which has also slowed him down.
Best Performance as a Trojan
UCLA Bruins at USC Trojans 2015
Marshall introduced himself in the Trojans’ victory over UCLA in the Coliseum. A game that put USC in the Pac-12 Championship game. As a freshman, Marshall made life difficult for Bruins freshman quarterback Josh Rosen, deflecting anything thrown to his side. The freshman had two interceptions in the second half of the game. One in the third quarter and the game sealing interception late in the fourth.
Marshall is projected as a potential NFL starting cornerback. There has been talk of moving him to safety, a role which Marshall has stated that he has no issue with adapting to. Marshall also had an impressive Senior Bowl performance that drew some more NFL interest.
Has it improved his draft stock? That remains to be seen. As of now most mock drafts have Marshall going between rounds 5-6. Though, the senior cornerback could definitely be a steal for a team and developed to become a solid starter at cornerback or safety in the league.