Draft Prospect Outlook:
Experienced, versatile corner with developed mirroring skills and requisite athleticism to match. Fully aware when the ball is approach. Good size and strength. Not a downfield burner. Wins in the short-to-intermediate area and will get his hands on a lot of passes. Day Two prospect.
A 247Sports four-star recruit out of Arlington, Va., M.J. Stewart played in 12 games as a true freshman reserve cornerback for North Carolina. At 6-foot, 205-pounds, Stewart emerged as a full-time starter and leader in UNC's defensive backfield over the next three seasons. With a varied skill set and a physical presence, Stewart played a lot of nickel during the latter half of his UNC career. He notched 25 total pass breakups as sophomore and junior and added 128 tackles, six tackle for a loss, three forced fumbles, and four interceptions during those two seasons. Stewart was Second-Team All-ACC as a sophomore and earned honorable mention All-ACC honors as a junior.
An unquestioned leader on UNC's 2017 team, Stewart entered his senior campaign as a Bednarik Award candidate with All-ACC and All-America hopes. The Tar Heels had a disappointing 3-9 season, but Stewart led UNC with 12 pass breakups and notched 45 tackles, five tackles for loss, and two sacks. Pro Football Focus named Stewart a 2017 First-Team All-ACC performer while also giving the senior corner the highest grade of all Tar Heel players for that season. Stewart finished his UNC career as the school record holder for most pass breakups with 41, surpassing Robert Williams' mark of 40 set from 1996-97. - Ross Martin, InsideCarolina