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Pro Football Focus rips Vikings' Waynes: He 'isn't ready to start'


Pro Football Focus does not buy the hype about Minnesota Vikings first-round draft pick Trae Waynes.

Waynes, a Michigan State product, ran a blazing fast 4.31-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine and he was considered by many to be the top cornerback in the draft.

The Vikings selected him with the 11th overall pick.

Through three preseason games, Waynes has been torched more than a few times and he's been called for a handful of penalties. But his play so far is exactly what PFF thought it would be.

Going back to last season at Michigan State, PFF says Waynes was spectacular against deep passes, but quarterbacks had no trouble passing in his direction on shorter routes.

"His numbers were already middle of the pack when it comes to the college landscape, but if you exclude those go routes they look pretty awful. That passer rating allowed would be the 122nd-best mark in the nation among corners. The completion percentage would be 309th. We are talking about the first cornerback drafted here."

The Vikings gave Waynes plenty of opportunity earlier this preseason, but last week, head coach Mike Zimmer admitted that he was a little "overzealous" with Waynes and decided to dial back his workload.

Zimmer, by the way, is not a fan of PFF.

Zimmer will get the last call on how Waynes is used as a rookie, but the Vikings do appear to be willing to take the time to groom him into a starting caliber corner – much like they did with Xavier Rhodes.

"He (Waynes) went out the first game and learned something; I think he went out this past week, he learned something," Vikings defensive coordinator George Edwards told the Pioneer Press last week. "As long as he keeps learning and keeps competing to get better, we think he's right where we need him to be."

Waynes did get some work with the first-team defense at practice on Wednesday.

It hasn't been all bad for Waynes; he broke up a pass thrown by Christian Ponder last week.

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