By Ricky Eisenbart, PSO Director NFL Scouting
Apr 13, 2021

PSO’s original Scouting Reports strive to be uniquely valuable in evaluating a player’s future outlook by focusing on the four main subjects that summarize a player’s likelihood of succeeding at the next level including: Natural Physical Tools, College Game Film, proven Production, and overall Risk that each individual player presents to a team drafting him. For a full breakdown of PSO’s Scouting Reports, click here 

Pos: CB

Hometown: Hickory, NC

School: Virginia Tech

Class: Redshirt Junior

DOB: 11/2/1998 (22)

Height: 6’2″ * | Weight: 207 lbs *

Hands: N/A | Arms: N/A

Bench: N/A | 40-YD: N/A

*Unofficial measurements
  • 1st-Team All-ACC, 13th-rated CB in 2019 (86.9 overall PFF grade)
  • 3-star ATH, converted from WR to CB in 2018
  • Played QB in High School; 10,425 total YDS & 124 TD in HS
  • Opted out of 2020 after only 23 career games at CB
  • ACL tear in 2017 led to redshirt; back spasms, lumbar surgery

Pros

  • Prototypical frame (6’2″, 207 lbs) and length
  • Elite hip fluidity and body control
  • Fantastic short-area quickness
  • Explosive lower-half
  • Great recovery speed
  • Solid upper-body strength
 

Cons

  • No Pro Day Data — ht, wt, arms, etc.
 

Grade: A

Pros

  • Outstanding ball skills — offensive experience shows
  • Exceptional fluidity, mirror ability — sometimes ran the route for the WR
  • Plants and drives on the ball with great explosion
  • Great body positioning and control, especially in jump-ball scenarios
  • Terrific in off-man and zone, effective in limited press-man reps
  • Recovery speed to close any separation
  • Efficient jam at the LOS, re-routing release
  • Often left on an island with safety shaded opposite him
  • Doesn’t seem all too “new” to defense

 

Cons

  • Limited press-man experience, transitions at the snap can use improvement
  • Didn’t move around the field much, almost strictly outside
  • Lacks some of the nuanced route-recognition ability
  • Tackling struggles due to a lack of experience

 

Grade: A-

 

Pros

  • 1st-Team All-ACC, 13th-rated CB in 2019 (86.9 overall PFF grade)
  • 86% of career snaps came out wide (13 total in the slot, 136 box, 38 at DL)
  • Allowed just 36% of targets to be completed, 10 forced incompletions in 2019
  • Sub-45% completion rate at all levels of the field
  • 26.8 passer rating while targeted (45 targets, only 1 TD)
  • Ridiculous 4.9 passer rating allowed on intermediate throws (10-19 yards)
  • Elite coverage (90.5) and zone (91.9) PFF grades
  • Lots of ball production — 6 INTs, 19 PBUs in 2 years

 

Cons

  • 58.4 PFF grade in man coverage is an eyesore 
  • Poor production in the run game (49.9 grade)
  • 21 career missed tackles (26% MT rate)
  • Only 58 career snaps in press-man

 

Grade: A-

Pros

  • Incredible growth in just his 2nd season at CB
  • Ideal frame, length, speed, and overall athleticism
  • Fantastic positioning and reactionary instincts
  • Natural ball skills as a former WR (6 INTs, 19 PBUs)
  • Rare coverage traits despite limited experience
  • Elite ACC production in just his 2nd season at CB
  • Medically cleared in April

 

Cons

  • Still learning how to play defense, let alone CB
  • Tackling & technique will be a work in progress
  • Opted out after 23 career games, just 1 elite season
  • ACL tear in 2017, recurring back spasms in 2019
  • Microdiscectomy procedure in March (lumbar)

 

Grade: B+

One of the most impressive prospects of this class, Caleb Farley has been a defender for a very short period of time. Arriving in Blacksburg after playing QB in high school, he hoped to become the Hokies’ YAC target at WR before tearing his ACL. He was moved to the opposite side of the ball upon recovery, where he grew into his new role at a tremendous pace. 

After an enigmatic debut in 2018, Farley quickly matured and absolutely locked down his side of the field as a redshirt sophomore in 2019. Snagging four INTs, he also forced 10 incompletions while allowing a ridiculously low 26.8 passer rating when targeted. While his ball skills clearly translated, the technical growth he showcased might have been even more impressive.

An outstanding athlete with exceptional fluidity and quickness, Farley is incredibly sticky in man-to-man and has the length to consistently challenge the catch point. As expected from an inexperienced defender, his run support could use plenty of work and he can fall victim to fakes and double-moves on occasion. Possessing a press-man athletic profile, he unfortunately didn’t play up near the LOS all too often, but his comfortability, patience, and discipline in off-coverage are all quite impressive.

His considerable injury history is of concern, but he was medically cleared shortly after a back surgery (microdiscectomy) in late March. If he’s taken to collegiate coaching that well that quickly, however, it’s difficult to imagine his growth getting stagnant at the next level. Assuming his injuries are manageable, Caleb Farley has all the tools to grow into one of the league’s very best CBs.

Pro Comp: CB Xavier Rhodes (Indianapolis Colts)

Projected Round: Top-15 Pick

Prime Destinations: DET, CAR, DAL, PHI, LAC, ARZ, LV

OVERALL GradeA-

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