2024 NFL Draft All-Defensive Team: 11 draft prospects every NFL defensive coordinator will love

Dallas Turner leads a talented 2024 NFL Draft class of defensive players, find out which other players round out the all-defensive team.

NFL draft prospect Dallas Turner
NFL draft prospect Dallas Turner / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages
4 of 5

Cornerback group led by versatile athletes

Terrion Arnold, CB - Alabama: Arnold is arguably the top cornerback in the 2024 NFL Draft class. He joined Alabama in 2021 as one of the most highly-rated safety prospects in the country, converted to cornerback, and, in the space of only two years, put together arguably the most impressive season of any player at the position.

2024 NFL Draft: Terrion Arnold
Terrion Arnold / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

Still only 20 years old, he shines in man coverage, using his physicality to blanket opposition receivers. Initially criticized for his lack of ball skills, Arnold duly recorded five interceptions and 13 pass breakups in 2023.

His perceived lack of versatility has been overstated; Arnold has proven effective in zone coverage, filled in admirably as a slot corner at times, and has proven to be both willing and capable in run defense.

Cooper DeJean, CB - Iowa: DeJean is a versatile athlete who we envisage occupying the slot cornerback in this defense. He’s at his best in zone schemes, where his instincts, vision, and short-area quickness come into their own. These traits were on full display in 2023 and were significant reasons why the 21-year-old didn’t give up a single touchdown in 10 games last season.

"He just makes it look easy, which is kind of amazing, too. Good players have a way of doing that sometimes."

Iowa HC Kirk Ferentz on Cooper DeJean

His ability as a dangerous returner on special teams gives him a slight edge over other cornerbacks considered in this spot. The season-ending leg injury he suffered may slow preparation for his rookie season, but we're willing to remain patient and reap the long-term benefits.

Quinyon Mitchell, CB - Toledo: We deliberated over this selection for some time; an excellent case could be made for Nate Wiggins or Kool-Aid McKinstry here. We eventually settled on Mitchell as we believe in his potential and are optimistic his flaws can be easily corrected with the right coaching. He demonstrates good technique in zone coverage but has yet to prove he can adapt to man-heavy schemes.

His aggressiveness in run defense is a positive. It hasn’t cost Mitchell so far -he only missed 6.3 percent of his tackle attempts last year- but against bigger, better competition at the NFL level, his tackling form could become a problem. He may be a polarizing prospect, but he has the raw tools to be as good as any cornerback in this class.