#2 Overall Cornerback by Football Addicts
Born: September 3rd, 1998 (21 Years Old)
Weight: 200 Lbs
University: Louisiana State
Coming out of Archbishop Rummel Highschool in Metairie, Louisiana, Kristain Fulton was a 5-star prospect by 247Sports and was the top prospect in the state. On July 6th, 2016 Fulton committed to LSU along with Devin White and Greedy Williams giving LSU the 2nd best recruiting class of 2016.
Even being as talented as Fulton was, he only got to play in three games his freshman year. Then in February of 2017 the NCAA suspended Kristian for two years for tampering with a PED test. Fulton said he was unaware it was only for PED’s, and thought he would fail for marijuana use two days prior to the test.
After redshirting the first year of his 730 day NCAA ban; Kristian Fulton won his appeal on the ban to allow him to play in the 2018-19 season. As a junior Fulton would record 25 tackles, 9 pass break ups and an interception in the 10 games he played in. Even crazier, he would only allow six total first downs or touchdowns in 2018. Some argued that he was a better prospect than Greedy Williams, who went in the 2nd round of the NFL Draft later that year, but ultimately chose to return for his senior season at LSU.
This season has proved to be a good investment for him, as he is one of the top defenders on the best team in the country. Fulton has 31 tackles, one interception, and 12 pass deflections this season. LSU looks to take home a National Title, and is set to face the 4th overall Oklahoma Sooners next week.
Strengths and Weaknesses
Fulton continues the pool of extremely talented defensive backs from LSU, and is built perfectly for bump and run man coverage. His flexibility and twitchy hip rotation allows him to stay with the quickest of receivers. Even against someone like Henry Ruggs, Fulton was able to blanket the receiver.
Of course playing in the SEC he gets to play against some of the best competition in the NCAA. He has tape against plenty of NFL level receivers such as Jerry Jeudy, D.K. Metcalf, A.J. Brown and Darius Slayton.
Similarly to Greedy Williams, and honestly most great cover corners, Fulton isn’t the most willing tackler. His form needs a lot of work, and could prove to be a liability in run defense if he can’t get it improved. I would love to see him turn more of his pass break ups into turnovers, as he has had 12 pass deflections to just one interception this season.
Missed the 2017 seasons due to tampering with an NCAA drug test, though failing for marijuana, still a minor red flag that looks to be more of a classic examples of being “young and dumb”.
NFL Draft Projection/NFL Player Comp
NFL Draft Projection
Kristian Fulton was debatably a 1st round pick in last years draft class, and by returning for his senior season has pretty much secured a Top 15 pick for himself. Of course we said the same thing last season about fellow LSU cornerback Greedy Williams, but fell to the 2nd round for unknown reasons. I love Fulton to the Detroit Lions, and he has been mocked there multiple times by myself.
The Lions went out and grabbed Trey Flowers to help out the front 7 of their defense, but lack talent in the secondary after trading away Diggs earlier this year. On top of that, Darius Slay has been in trade rumors the past two seasons, so drafting Fulton gives them the ability to do so as well.
NFL Player Comp
While I do think Fulton will continue to develop, and become a great cornerback in the NFL, it is no secret his strong suit is man coverage. By no means is he a liability in zone coverage, but I do believe his success could be excelled if he is drafted to a team that runs a high percentage of man to man.
With his skill set, size, and even mix in the weird off the field issues and you get a pretty similar summary of Marcus Peters coming out of Washington. Peters is one of the best man coverage corners in the NFL, and has reminded the league since joining the Baltimore Ravens. Like I would expect Fulton to do, Marcus Peters struggled to fit in with the Rams heavy zone schemes. Once he found a defensive scheme he fit well in, Peters has been a nightmare for opposing receivers.