Analysis: Arlington Heights' Tariq Woolen drafted by the Seattle Seahawks

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CB Tariq Woolen, UTSA, Arlington Heights

Pick: Round 5 (153) Seattle Seahawks

As a prep: Woolen made his name in the prep ranks as a wide receiver. The three-star led Heights as a senior with 31 catches for 536 yards and 10 scores, earning first-team all-district honors at the Class 5A level. Woolen also played basketball and starred on the track team. He was the 142nd-ranked wide receiver in the 2017 class who didn’t rank inside the top 1,000 players in his recruiting cycle. UTSA held off a late run by Baylor to land Woolen. 

As a collegiate: Woolen earned three starts and played in 12 games at wide receiver as a redshirt freshman. He caught 15 balls for 158 yards and a touchdown during that time. Woolen put up similar numbers as a wide receiver as a sophomore in 2019. Woolen moved to cornerback with the arrival of Jeff Traylor’s staff prior to the 2020 season. Woolen started seven games in 2020 and nine games during an honorable mention All-CUSA season as a senior in 2021. Injuries prevented Woolen from excelling on a consistent basis at cornerback over the last two seasons. 

As a pro? Woolen was a high draft pick because of potential. There simply aren’t a lot of 6-4 cornerbacks who run a 40-yard dash in 4.26 seconds, which was the fourth-fastest time in NFL Combine History. In fact, he might be the only one walking the planet and that’s a skill set NFL teams bet on in the second or third round. Woolen is raw. He’s only played cornerback for two seasons, and he missed time to injury in both campaigns. He left UTSA with 16 starts at cornerback and six starts at wide receiver over a five-year span. That’s not a ton of football. He has the upside to develop into a high-end cornerback with patience. There’s always the possibility that he moves to safety if his 1-on-1 cover skills don’t measure up at the next level. 

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