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Hobbs as Emerged as the Best Rookie Cornerback in the NFL

Las Vegas cornerback Nate Hobbs has adapted to the NFL quite quickly with help of veteran players.

Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Nate Hobbs has emerged as the best rookie cornerback drafted in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Pro Football Focus has Hobbs with a 77.3 defensive grade, highest among all rookie cornerbacks, and seventh-best overall in the NFL.

“I wouldn't say surprised, but it's definitely, like you said, it's been a quick transition. I feel like anything you put your mind to, like if you just mentally transition along with the physical transition, then it should go smooth. You're going to have hiccups and mess ups here and there, but I’m just grateful that I could produce for the team,” said Hobbs.

Hobbs, selected by the Raiders in the fifth-round (168 overall) out of Illinois, is known in the locker room by his teammates as being a great listener and someone that always asks a lot of questions.

Along the way, veteran cornerback Casey Hayward Jr. has been there answering all his questions and mentoring Hobbs to be the player he is today.

“I think Casey has made a huge impact. From day one, he's been open to anything I've asked, took me in like a little brother,” Hobbs added. “Anything I ask for on tips, he gives me that. But really, I see that in his play. Like I just try to watch him and learn and pick up little things. He's always open to telling me or giving me advice.”

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Hobbs has totaled 36 tackles, one forced fumble, and one sack throughout his rookie season.

Most impressive, Hobbs has 385 snaps without allowing a passing touchdown, only behind Hayward’s 417 snaps.

But it has been his coverage skills that have made him look like a seasoned player on the field.

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