Image Credit: Oklahoma Athletics
After going undrafted in the 2020 NFL Draft, Oklahoma cornerback Parnell Motley has signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
In 2019, Motley totaled 41 tackles (31 solo, 10 assisted), 13 pass breakups, five forced fumbles, and one interception. In his four-year career, he totaled for 176 tackles (130 solo, 46 assisted), 33 pass breakups, six forced fumbles, and six interceptions.
Motley has been an integral part of the Sooners’ defense since his sophomore season. That year, he started 13 of the team’s 14 games and led the team in pass breakups and interceptions.
He continued to be an important piece to that puzzle and it shows with his ability. Motley is great in man coverage, as he shut down Big 12 receivers and make plays on the ball. He has solid route recognition that could definitely translate to the next level.
Motley is also a turnover machine. Not only can he get you interceptions, but he pulls at the football while he’s tackling, forcing fumbles. He also has experience as a gunner on punt teams, adding to his versatility.
What the Analysts Say
Press corner at Oklahoma who makes up for a lack of foot quickness and explosive movements with pattern recognition and peskiness at the catch point. Despite the passes defensed, he may not have the type of recovery burst or physicality to be able to withstand the matchups teams would throw at him in the pros. Motley will get a shot in camp, but may need a transition into a zone role in order to continue having a shot at making plays on the football. -Lance Zierlein, NFL Network
Motley will be an interesting projection to the next level. He was extremely productive this season, allowing only 20 catches from 44 targets for 232 yards, but that was a massive leap forward compared to his previous two years as a starter where he allowed 1,445 yards combined. He’s exceptional in press, but he doesn’t quite have prototypical press size at 6-0, 180 pounds. This past week against Oklahoma State, he was stingy once again, allowing 3-of-6 targets for only 22 yards and picking off a pass. His testing numbers at the combine will be worth watching, as it looks like he was making up for some speed deficiencies with his physical play style. -Michael Renner, Pro Football Focus
Motley seems to be in the mix to fight for a spot in Tampa Bay’s cornerback group. Corner has been their weakness before improving at the end of the year. If he shows out as he did in Norman, Motley could be an impressive add for the Buccaneers front office.
For an undrafted free agent, Motley possesses a lot of talent. Even if he doesn’t start right away, he can still be a useful piece to the Buccaneers defense. Motley can still be a useful member of the Buccaneers special teams unit, working as a gunner on punts and kickoffs.