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Chargers 90-in-90: CB Quenton Meeks

Can the former standout at Stanford find a way to make an impact in 2020?

Atlanta Falcons v Jacksonville Jaguars Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images

When Meeks went undrafted following the 2018 NFL draft, there was a lot of confused scouts and media members. The 6’1, 209-pound defensive back had excellent size and instincts, traits that he showed off on a consistent basis. However, all 32 teams kept passing on Meeks over and over again. He would eventually sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

But prior to all of that, Meeks starred as a prep at Del Norte High School in San Diego, California. After setting a single-season record with 13 total touchdowns as a senior in 2014, he was named a Cal-Hi Sports All-State Third-Team member and earned a four-star rating as a prospect by Rivals.

Meeks wasted no time in getting on the field at Stanford. He played right away as a true freshman, notching 35 total tackles, 1.5 for a loss, 4 pass breakups, and a career-best three interceptions with one run back for a touchdown. After playing in all 14 games that season, Meeks participated in just 11 games as a sophomore due to injuries. He finished with only 19 tackles but corralled another pair of interceptions, including a pick-six, and seven pass breakups.

His final season at Stanford saw Meeks snag his sixth and seventh-career interceptions while totaling a career-high 61 tackles and seven pass breakups. He was named a Second-Team All-Pac 12 selection before forgoing his final year of eligibility to enter the 2018 NFL Draft.

At the combine, Meeks did not run the 40, but showed some elite explosiveness with a 39-inch vertical jump, a 10’8 broad, with a 4.23 short shuttle and a 6.72 3-cone time. At his pro day, Meeks ran a 4.54 40, which is not a great mark for an aspiring cornerback in the NFL. Former Cardinal corner Richard Sherman wasn’t an elite athlete either, so maybe there’s a surprise in store from Meeks, but that forty time certainly played a role in him falling out of the draft.

After spending his rookie season with the Jaguars, he was cut during the final days prior to the 2019 season. Meeks was unemployment for about a month before the Chargers came calling on October 1.

Basic Info

Height: 6’1
Weight: 209
College: Stanford
Experience: 2
Years with team: 1

Contract Status

Quenton Meeks signed a 1 year, $675,000 contract with the Los Angeles Chargers, including an average annual salary of $675,000. In 2020, Meeks will earn a base salary of $675,000, while carrying a cap hit of $675,000.” - Spotrac.com

The Good

Meeks is a prototypical corner for a Gus Bradley defense. He hits that 6’2 threshold with excellent length and has a solid build. While he could’ve benefitted from playing a final year in Palo Alto, it’s hard to argue against him going pro with three-straight multi-interception seasons.

NFL writer Jon Ledyard wrote about Meeks for The Draft Network prior to the ‘18 draft and discussed the ideal scheme fit for him:

“Press-man corner if his technique polishes up. Cover 3 heavy teams make a lot of sense as well. Even if Meeks is eventually moved to safety, I think he can be an NFL starter there as well.”

Sounds a bit like the Chargers, yeah? He’s aggressive at the catch-point and fights like hell to get back into position when beaten. Guys who know how to find the ball don’t often just lose that from college to the pros. The upside is there with Meeks.

The Bad

Hard not to point at the 40 time right away. While the value of that number can mean the world or nothing at all, it’s still worth keeping in mind. He’s going to get challenged vertically and with the entire division having gotten faster in this year’s draft, it’s tough to see how Meeks can add to the DB room that others already in there can’t.

Odds of making the roster/What to expect in 2020?

Looking at the rest of the cornerbacks vying for a roster spot, I believe Meeks has one of the more inside tracks. Brandon Facyson is currently the favorite to be the final corner kept but there’s no reason Meeks can’t challenge him for that fifth spot. If they keep six corners, then even better. At the very least, he’s a good combination of potential and character that the coaching staff likes to keep around. I expect those things to work heavily in his favor.

Fun Fact: Meeks is the son of former NFL coach Ron Meeks who was a part of the 1987 Miami Hurricanes National Championship staff and the Indianapolis Colts’ 2006 Super Bowl Championship.