Early NFL Draft Scouting: Iowa Hawkeyes CB Desmond King


It’s tough to watch any Iowa Hawkeyes games from the 2013 or 2014 season and not come away impressed by young cornerback Desmond King, who vaulted himself into the starting lineup as a Freshman and never looked back.

King’s 2013 campaign put him on the map at Iowa, but his follow up in 2014 was just as impressive. He led all Big Ten freshmen in 2013 with 69 tackles and also finished with eight pass breakups. In 2014, he came back with 64 tackles, three interceptions (one returned for a touchdown), five pass breakups, and two tackles for loss.

The 5-11, 200 pound King is obviously a really active tackler, but what makes him such a well-rounded player?

Let’s take a closer look at King and what he brings to the table.

King doesn’t have any Draft Breakdown tape yet, but you can watch a variety of Iowa games on NoonKick.com.


  • King, for his youth, is a very instinctive player. He makes good breaks on the ball, and as he explained after his interception for a touchdown against Indiana, he knows how to read quarterback tendencies and make the play even before the ball is snapped.
  • Tackling is obviously a strength here. He’s racked up over 130 tackles in his first two seasons in college football. King has good size and is aggressive, and a good wrap-up tackler. He can make plays behind the line of scrimmage, explode upfield to make plays, or take guys down in the open field.
  • Ball skills
  • With eight pass breakups as a freshman and another five as a sophomore along with three interceptions, it’s clear King has good ball skills and is evolving into a playmaker. He Reminds me a lot of Chris Harris Jr. of the Denver Broncos the way he attacks the ball when it is about to meet a receiver’s hands. He is so feisty and active when the ball comes his way, it’s tough for receivers to make anything happen.
  • Size — King is 5-11 and listed at 200 pounds on the Iowa athletics site. That could mean he’s about 5-10, 190-195 based on what we’ve seen in recent years. Even so, he has the size, length, and active hands to be an outside or inside corner in the NFL.


I’m excited to watch this guy play in 2015. He has the skill set to be one of the best cornerbacks in the Big Ten, and he could have a very tough decision after this season of whether or not to continue playing at Iowa or declare for the NFL Draft.

Next: Scouting Hawkeyes DE Drew Ott