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2015 NFL DRAFT
player photo

Richard Marshall

Height: 5-11 | Weight: 189 | College: Fresno State
 
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Overview

One of the finest pass thieves in college football, Marshall's coverage skills were instrumental in consistently shutting down the opposition's best receiver. He is equally adept at zone and man coverage and is an excellent playmaker who should have considerable success playing at the next level.

Marshall was rated as the 63rd-best prospect in the West by Super Prep during his senior year at Locke High School. He garnered All-Conference honors and All-CIF recognition as he recorded 62 tackles and three interceptions, one of which he returned for a touchdown during his final season.

Ever since his uncle, Arthur Warren, played football at Fresno State in 1992, Marshall was determined he would one day suit up for the Bulldogs. He redshirted in 2002, but earned Scout Team Player of the Year honors for his performances in practices.

In 2003, he appeared in twelve games, including three starts. He finished with 37 tackles (27 solos) and caused and recovered a fumble. Marshall also deflected six passes and gained 83 yards on three interceptions, returning one 81 yards for a touchdown.

Marshall was named All-Western Athletic Conference second-team in 2004. He set a school single-season record by gaining 205 yards with a pair of scores on three interception returns. He also posted 61 tackles (46 solos) with two stops for losses and five pass breakups.

Marshall received third-team All-American and first-team All-WAC honors as a junior in 2005. He led the team with 78 tackles (57 solos) from his weak-side cornerback position and recovered two fumbles while causing another. Marshall gained 17 yards on three interception returns and 307 yards on fourteen kickoff returns (22.6 avg). He also had a career-high eleven deflected passes.

In 37 games at Fresno State, Marshall started 28 times. He recorded 176 tackles (130 solos) with four stops for losses of 19 yards. He caused two fumbles and recovered three others, returning one 17 yards. He deflected 22 passes and intercepted nine others, setting school career-records with 305 yards and three touchdowns on those returns. Marshall also totaled 307 yards on fourteen kickoff returns (22.6 avg).

Analysis

Positives: Not an overly-muscled athlete, but does demonstrate good power … Has some arm muscle definition and room on his frame to add more bulk … Has valid foot speed and quickness, demonstrating the agility, flexibility and balance to accelerate and close on the ball … Is developing a better feel for the ball and does not need to digest the action before reacting … Consistent to maintain position on the receiver and can play with a big cushion because of his closing speed … Does a good job of flipping his hips and turning smoothly in transition … Has very good ability to get his head turned around to track the ball in flight and is fluid in his movements coming out of transition … Displays improved anticipation ability playing in the zone and when he sees the route develop, he will act quickly … Can plant, drive and burst to close, showing the second gear needed to step in front of the receiver and disrupt the route progression … Has the range to reel in the slack in a hurry and is a tough performer competing for the ball in a crowd … Shows good concentration and natural hands to look the ball in … Has adequate ability to fill the lane in run support, but is a better tackler in the open field … Will hit with a good thud on contact and is not timid colliding with the receiver to disrupt the play.

Negatives: Does not have the size to be effective in run support inside the box, as he is quickly neutralized by larger blockers … Has shorter than ideal arms and must rely more on his timing and leaping ability to get to the ball, rather than extending to pluck it … Can stay on the hip of the receiver throughout the route, but does not have a great feel for receivers coming out of their breaks (late to react, but has the speed to recover) … Good open field tackler, but struggles to disengage when blockers latch on to his body in closed quarters … Needs to add more bulk.

As a cover cornerback, Marshall's speed, timing on his leaps and explosive acceleration after the interception is reminiscent to that of longtime NFL veteran Terrell Buckley during his prime. Marshall has the top-end speed and balance to stay tight on the receiver throughout the route. He gets his head turned around nicely to look the ball in, but needs to time his leaps properly to compensate for his short arm reach.

Marshall is equally effective playing the trail or in tight coverage. He used to be sloppy in his backpedal, but demonstrated better hip sink and foot balance as a junior in attempts to smoothly turn and run. He has an explosive burst closing on the ball and while he might be late at times to locate it, he will show urgency getting to the ball once he does.

Marshall is more comfortable in man coverage, but can effectively handle the switch-off when operating in the zone. He has enough turning motion in his breaks and the feet to take good angles in pursuit. He still needs to continue to improve his feel for deep coverage, but gets a good break when reading three-step throws.

Marshall's best ability is to make plays on the ball in the air. He has exceptional body control to run, jump and adjust to the thrown pass and has the natural hands to pluck and secure the ball before heading up field. His above average vertical rise lets him get to the ball quicker than the taller receivers.

Despite showing good tackling form, he is not much of a factor in run force due to size issues. He is physical attacking ballcarriers and receivers in the open, but will occasionally take a side. He will not hesitate to square up and put his helmet under an opponent's chin.

While Marshall is not recognized like others at this position, his ability as a ball thief and his excellent timed speed has seen his stock continue to rise. While he is still developing, he can provide immediate value in nickel and dime packages and has shown some value as a kickoff returner, as well.

Career Notes

Only the eleventh player in NCAA Division 1-A history to gain more than 300 yards on interception returns in a career and the first to accomplish that feat since Tracy Saul of Texas Tech (425, 1989-92) … His 305 yards rank second in school history behind Rod Webster (340, 1984-87) … His three interception returns for touchdowns set a Fresno State record, topping the previous mark of two held by Webster, Jack Erdman (1968-69), James Burton (1991-93), Dee Manza (2002) and Efrain Guizar (1997) … His interception return average of 33.9 yards broke the old school record of 27.0 yards by Calvin Lane (9 for 243 yards, 1974-75).

2005 Season

All-American third-team and All-Western Athletic Conference first-team choice by The NFL Draft Report … Lined up at weak-side cornerback, leading the team with a career-high 78 tackles (57 solos), including one for a 7-yard loss … Recovered two fumbles, returning one 17 yards … Caused one fumble and deflected eleven passes … Gained 17 yards on three interception returns and 307 yards on fourteen kickoff returns (22.6 avg).

2005 Game Analysis

Weber State … Began the season with seven tackles (5 solos), forcing WSU to punt in the second quarter when Marshall stopped Wiley king after a 3-yard gain on a third-&-12 pass thrown by QB Ian Pizarro … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Terry Larsen-Five catches for 56 yards.

Oregon … Deflected a pass and made six hits (3 solos), but was beaten by Cameron Colvin on a 46-yard touchdown pass from QB Kellen Clemens in the second quarter … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Cameron Colvin-Three catches for 55 yards and a touchdown.

Toledo … Only made two tackles with a pass break-up, but recovered a fumble by receiver Andrew Hawkins, setting up a 1-yard touchdown run by FSU tailback Wendell Mathis with 0:25 left before halftime … Intercepted a Clint Cochran pass at the UT 49, returning the ball 6 yards to set up Clint Stitser's 40-yard field goal … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Andrew Hawkins-Five catches for 34 yards.

New Mexico State … Produced a pair of tackles … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Brandon Allen-Two catches for 18 yards.

Utah State … Took over kickoff return duties, gaining 112 yards on three attempts … Had six tackles (4 solos) with an interception and a fumble recovery … Picked off a Leon Jackson pass to set up FSU QB Paul Pinegar's 7-yard scoring strike to Joe Fernandez in the first quarter … Was penalized 5 yards for pass interference at the start of the second quarter, but two plays later on a Lynwood Johnson 1-yard run, the tailback fumbled and Marshall recovered the ball, advancing it 17 yards to set up a 22-yard field goal for the Bulldogs … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Tony Pennyman-Four catches for 22 yards.

Idaho … Registered seven tackles (6 solos) with a pass break-up and returned a kickoff 46 yards … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Matt Askew-No catches.

Hawaii … Posted five solo tackles, a pass deflection and a 12-yard kickoff return … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Chad Mock-Two catches for 19 yards.

San Jose State … Followed with five hits (3 solos) and a pass deflection … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Rufus Skillen-No catches.

Boise State … Had a busy day, collecting eight tackles (5 solos) with a stop for a 7-yard loss, a forced fumble, a pass break-up, an 11-yard interception return and two kickoff returns for 42 yards … Caused a fumble when he tackled Lee Marks on a 2-yard run and FSU recovered the ball, setting up a 26-yard field goal with 0:05 left in the first half … Picked off a Jared Zabransky pass and returned it 11 yards with a minute left in the game, as the Bulldogs then ran out the clock to preserve a 27-7 win … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Jerard Rabb-Five catches for 80 yards.

Southern California … Effective shut down All-Pac 10 receiver Dwayne Jarrett while making seven tackles (6 solos) … Batted the ball out of Jarrett's hands on a first-&-goal toss from QB Matt Leinart in the second quarter … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Dwayne Jarrett-Five catches for 37 yards.

Nevada … Was in on ten tackles (8 solos) and gained 25 yards on two kickoff returns … Came from the opposite end of the field to stop Kyle Simmons on a 52-yard pass from QB Jeff Rowe in the first quarter … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Anthony Pudewell-Two catches for 22 yards.

Louisiana Tech … Added 46 yards on three kickoff returns and made six tackles (4 solos) with four pass deflections, but was caught looking on a 52-yard touchdown pass from QB Matt Kubik to Johnathan Holland … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Johnathan Holland-Three catches for 61 yards.

Tulsa (Liberty Bowl) … Closed out his career with seven tackles (6 solos) and a 21-yard kickoff return, but saw Ashlan Davis haul in a 54-yard scoring toss from QB Paul Smith in the fourth quarter … Main Pass Coverage Assignment -- WR Ashlan Davis-Eight catches for 128 yards and a touchdown.

2004 Season

All-Western Athletic Conference second-team selection … Started every game, ranking fourth on the team with 61 tackles (46 solos) and had two stops for losses of 9 yards … Deflected five passes and intercepted three others, setting a school single-season record with 205 yards in returns, which topped the previous mark of 182 yards by Calvin Lane in 1974 … His two interceptions returned for touchdowns tied the FSU single-season record held by Dee Meza (2002), Efrain Guizar (1997) and Jack Erdman (1970).

2004 GAME HIGHLIGHTS

Washington … Opened the season with nine tackles (6 solos), including one for a 6-yard loss and returned an interception 75 yards for a touchdown.

Kansas State … Had only one solo tackle, but gained 30 yards on an interception return.

Louisiana Tech, Texas-El Paso and Boise State … Totaled six tackles with a pass break-up in each contest.

Rice … Collected another six hits with a stop for a 3-yard loss and returned an interception 100 yards for a touchdown … Only Gary Hayes (107 vs. Long Beach State in 1976) had a longer interception return in school history.

Virginia (MPC Computers Bowl) … Accounted for six tackles (3 solos).

2003 Season

Played in twelve games, starting three contests … Registered 37 tackles (27 solos) with a stop for a 3-yard loss … Caused and recovered a fumble … Had six pass deflections and three interceptions for 83 yards in returns and a touchdown.

2003 Game Analysis

Tennessee … In his first play as a collegian, Marshall intercepted a Casey Clausen pass and returned it 81 yards for a touchdown, finishing the day with six tackles (4 solos).

Portland State … Made another six hits (5 solos), including one for a 3-yard loss.

Nevada and Oregon State … Credited with one tackle and an interception in each game.

San Jose State … Totaled five tackles and blocked a punt.

Texas-El Paso … Totaled five solo tackles while causing and recovering a fumble.

UCLA (Silicon Valley Football Classic) … Posted four hits (2 solos).

2002 Season

Redshirted as a freshman, earning Scout Team Defensive Player of the Year honors.

Injury Report

No injuries reported (did miss the 2002 Colorado State and Rice games, but was not on the national injury report).

Agility Tests

Combine: 4.46 seconds in the 40-yard dash … 2.57 20-yard dash … 1.57 10-yard dash … Bench presses 225 pounds 12 times … 37-inch vertical jump … 10'9" broad jump … 4.16 20-yard shuttle … 11.33 60-yard shuttle … 6.65 three-cone drill … 29 -inch arm length … 9 1/8-inch hands.

High School

Attended Locke (Los Angeles, Cal.) High School … Rated as the 63rd-best prospect in the West by Super Prep during his senior year … Garnered All-Conference honors and All-CIF recognition, as he recorded 62 tackles and three interceptions, one of which he returned for a touchdown during his final season.

Personal

Criminology major … Son of Cynthia and Marcus Taylor … Uncle, Arthur Warren, played football at Fresno State in 1992 … Brother, Alvin, is a redshirt running back at Nevada-Las Vegas … Born 12/12/84 … Resides in Los Angeles, California.

 
 

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