Merlin, do you think with his lack of size that he can play outside the numbers? Or will he be mostly in the slot?
I think he can play inside or out. Same with Tomlinson. So what drives things might be who is their desired CB3 of the available options. If for example they want Rochell out there he will play outside the hash only so either Tomlinson or Durant will be in the slot.
Also and btw and this is not a popular opinion but I think Kendrick is a slot only at this level because he does not have the wheels to survive out there vs the best wideouts. Basically if you play him outside the hash he will be targeted non-stop by opposing offenses. Kendrick played outside in college and the Rams played him outside his rook season, btw, and he is really good in his positioning and use of the sideline boundary. In the NFL the best place for guys who lack wheels is inside, as there are support options and rubs and whatnot that you can do to affect the target, historically speaking. We drafted Joyner back in the day as an undersized 4.6 guy for example and he was solid in the slot for those reasons and historically guys who are not quite good enough for solo work outside end up playing in the slot.
Now note that slot receivers now include some of the best athletes on the field, but to some extent these old things still hold true. You are still IMO better off on the interior if you lack speed than you are outside the hash where a go route getting by you is very difficult for a safety to give you help. That is not going to change. So this is why I like Kendrick on the interior.
But there is another factor at play which is whether they have Durant or Tomlinson travelling with matchups. And that would come down to how well they show in camp. Generally if you have a corner travelling with the WR it is because he is significantly better than your other corners, so it allows you to dictate the matchup you want to erase a top target. Ramsey was used in that role and I am of the mind that they also used it to avoid certain matchups as his game degraded but that's another unpopular take of mine.
So boil all that down and my guess is that Durant will be the top corner in the defensive backfield. Early in the season I would guess he travels with desired matchups. But as Tomlinson comes online that will probably change, where they allow Tomlinson to take the matchup and they will have Durant travel with the receiver when he lines up over Kendrick. And our corners will be better than media give them credit for right now I think. But they will struggle a bit with the bigger matchups. I don't think Rochell will do anything, hope I'm wrong but it is what it is. We'll need to replace Kendrick next offseason as he'll be the weak link.
Overall much of the questions I have with the secondary comes down to the safeties since I think we'll be pretty good 2 deep at corner. I think Morris needs to find a pairing that excels in the way he wants to call it. Does he have the right pieces back there? No idea but we'll see.