Emmanuel Forbes IDP Scouting Profile: Big Play Upside for Fast-Rising CB Prospect
Two-time SEC interception leader heads into the NFL.
Mississippi State cornerback Emmanuel Forbes led the SEC in interceptions in 2020 and 2022 and tied for #16 all-time. Even more mouthwatering for IDP managers, Forbes returned six of his picks for touchdowns, an FBS record. He has excellent ball skills, and he could become an interception machine in the NFL. But while Forbes can lockdown in man coverage and make a play on any ball, he is shaky at run defense and gives up the occasional big play.
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If Forbes can earn his place on the field, he could impact IDP fantasy football. Playing the INT game as an IDP manager doesn’t often work, but when it does, it can pay off big. Forbes should be treated as a high-upside late round IDP pick in dynasty or a waiver wire stash to keep an eye on, depending on the size of your league.
PFF Rank: CB7, Overall #47; Career INT: 14; Stock: Rising
Basic Bio and High School Career
Forbes has been a ballhawk as far back as high school. He played CB and WR at Grenada High School in Grenada, Mississippi, where he made eight interceptions, including multiple pick sixes. He caught 31 passes for 499 yards and seven touchdowns his senior year.
According to his Hudl profile, he ran a 4.64 40-yard dash in high school and a 4.23 shuttle and benched three reps at 185 pounds. Yes, Forbes is a bit undersized at 6’0" and 180 pounds. There are only nine NFL cornerbacks who weight 180 pounds or lighter, and only two of them played 700 snaps or more. PFF’s NFL Draft Guide says Forbes should add 10 pounds.
But one of those who didn’t play a lot of snaps was New England rookie Marcus Jones, who scored touchdowns as a DB, punt returner, and receiver last season. Jones is considerably faster, though; Jones ran a 4.38 at the Combine and posted a 4.4 to his Hudl.
With offers from Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Tennessee, Nebraska, Memphis, South Alabama, and others, Forbes chose Miss State.
Forbes played over 600 snaps each season of his college career, made three or more interceptions each season, and improved his coverage each year. In his senior year, he jumped a Will Levis screen pass and took it 59 yards to the house. Levis did complete two passes on him for 34 yards and a touchdown, however.
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Against Alabama, Bryce Young only targeted Forbes once, and it was caught for a six-yard gain. The following week, Georgia’s Stetson Bennett went after Forbes nine times, producing six completions for 46 yards and a touchdown. The other touchdown Forbes allowed as a junior was to Memphis QB Seth Henigan, a three-star recruit and QB33, per NFL Draft Buzz, of the 2024 class.
Projected Draft Capital
Forbes has an average ranking of 37, which is early second round, at the NFL Mock Draft Database. He’s going as high as No. 14 (Pats) in a late January mock draft for Pro Football Network, No. 19 (Bucs) at NFL.com, and No. 23 (Vikings) in CBS’s Tom Fornelli’s mocks. Charlie Campbell of Walter Football, who did the most accurate mock draft of 2022 (albeit in April), has Forbes going to the Cowboys at No. 58.
Of the four CBs taken in round one of 2022, three of them played over 90% of their teams’ defensive snaps when healthy. For CBs taken in the second round, two of four played over 90% of the snaps (and one played 75%). So if Forbes is taken in the first two rounds, chances are good that he will have the chance to start and be on the field all game.
Look at Emmanuel Forbes in the mold of fellow SEC product Roger McCreary. McCreary made six interceptions in his final three years of college at Auburn. McCreary was picked by the Titans in the second round and went on to make 70 solo tackles, one pick, and eight pass defenses in his 17 games as a starter and finished as the DB54 in my scoring system (RotoBaller/Mitch’s Picks). On the high end, he could be like the Cowboys’ DaRon Bland, who made five interceptions as a rookie, four of them in Weeks 13-16.
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