NFL.com analyst Bucky Brooks in his June 18 Scout's Notebook ranked the top five lockdown corners in the league. His pick for No. 1: Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey.
"Ramsey not only possesses rare physical traits that make it nearly impossible for a receiver to escape the line untouched, but he is a refined technician with superb instincts and awareness on the island," Brooks wrote as part of his analysis.
For Ramsey, this offseason recognition follows a 2020 campaign in which he felt he had the best year of his five-year career so far.
"The year didn't end how we wanted it to as a team, but there are some positives to take away from it," Ramsey said during an end-of-season video conference back in January. "Personally, for me, I feel like I had probably my best year in my NFL career thus far. I feel like I put out the best body of work out that I've ever put out."
Experts seemingly concurred, naming Ramsey to his fourth Pro Bowl, second Associated Press All-Pro First Team Press, and second Pro Football Writers of America All-NFL and All-conference teams after he held several of the league's top receivers last season in check, including Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs, Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins and Seahawks wide receiver D.K. Metcalf – all of whom were also All-Pro and Pro Bowl selections for the 2020 season.
New Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris had yet to work with Ramsey when he was officially introduced in February, but was already quite familiar with his skillset and what he's capable of.
"Jalen is a great player," Morris said during his introductory video conference. "He's probably rare. He's unique. He can be a shutdown corner, (or) you can move him inside and he can play at the nickel position. He's smart. You see his toughness oozing all over the tape. You can see his competitive nature all over the tape. You see the exciting plays. You're seeing what he can be and the best version of himself at all times when he's out there on the field."
Ramsey will look to repeat or surpass that performance beginning Sept. 12, when the Rams kick off the 2021 season at home against the Bears on Sunday Night Football.
For Brooks' full analysis and rankings, click here.