Ike Taylor is no stranger to being on an island. The former Steelers cornerback helped Pittsburgh win two Super Bowls during his 12-year career. After tracking the best CBs throughout this season, Taylor supplies his final top 10 of the 2016 campaign.
Year-end cornerback rankings
Season stats in coverage: allowed 44 catches on 85 targets for 624 yards, two TDs, four INTs, 64.0 passer rating against.
Sherman started out as No. 3 on this list, but his play throughout the season proved he belonged in my top spot. Stacking up this list wasn't easy because there was a lot of great play from all, but the Seahawks star was excellent in coverage and shut down top wideouts on a weekly basis. He remains the best at press coverage and disrupting timing between the quarterback and receiver. Sherman does so many things well, but the thing that sets him apart is his tackling. Without Earl Thomas, look for Sherman to lead the Seahawks' defense in the postseason.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 43 catches on 74 targets for 539 yards, two TDs, three INTs, 72.9 passer rating against.
It was a close race between No. 1 and 2, but I chose this order simply because Sherman never takes a play off. At times, Peterson got caught peeking into the backfield and was beat when he shouldn't have been. The Cardinals' CB1 is extremely talented and had another Pro Bowl campaign, but I couldn't validate putting him above Sherman this season.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 34 catches on 72 targets for 337 yards, three TDs, two INTs, 63.3 passer rating against.
Harris did it all for the Broncos in 2016. Even when others faltered, he was consistent. He is great in coverage and has clean feet in lateral movement. Harris is the best all-around corner on the Denver defense, but he can still tackle better. Overall, though, great season by Harris in Year 6.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 51 catches on 89 targets for 652 yards, three TDs, six INTs, 63.5 passer rating against.
I could talk all day about this kid. He's an absolute nightmare for opposing quarterbacks and one of the leaders of the Chiefs' defense. Peters, who amassed 20 passes defensed in Year 2, knows when to jump routes or fall back and it's going to be fun to watch him in the postseason again. Peters still has room for improvement when covering the deep ball, something I expect to get better in Year 3.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 44 catches on 88 targets for 589 yards, four TDs, three INTs, 72.6 passer rating against.
There was a lot of talk surrounding Norman throughout his first season in Washington -- from why he didn't shadow some of the league's best receivers to penalties to more tiffs with Odell Beckham Jr. But overall, Norman rounds out my top five because he was involved on nearly every defensive snap and in all 16 games. One thing keeping him from the top three, though: penalties. Norman drew 14 flags, the most of any player in the league.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 37 catches on 81 targets for 425 yards, two TDs, three INTs, 54.8 passer rating against.
Jenkins was a huge part of the improvement in the Giants' defense. They spent big money in the offseason -- Jenkins' contract included -- but it paid off, as Big Blue's back in the postseason. Jenkins and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie made up one of the best cornerback tandems in 2016, with Jenkins holding down the right side of the defense in his 15 starts. I'm hoping Jenkins feels good enough to play against Aaron Rodgers in the Wild Card Round because the Giants will need him to help shut down a red-hot Jordy Nelson.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 47 catches for 76 targets for 482 yards, two TDs, one INT, 83.3 passer rating against.
We'll have to see what comes of Jones' run-in with police earlier this week, but I'm here to judge his play on the field. And in a down season for the Bengals, Pacman was a bright spot on the defense. The savvy veteran held down his side for quite some time. Jones never fell out of my rankings -- a credit to the rock-solid play in his 10th NFL season.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 33 catches on 79 targets for 384 yards, two TDs, five INTs, 39.2 passer rating against.
In his fourth season, Rhodes displayed improvements in his off coverage and bump-and-run techniques, earning himself a Pro Bowl spot. He shut down top receivers weekly, but had too many penalties (eight). Throughout the season, he cost the Vikings 113 yards from penalties -- way too much for a team whose offense struggled to get in the end zone. Rhodes was a little too inconsistent to stay on this list from week to week. That consistent performance is what I want to see from him in 2017.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 36 catches on 73 targets for 372 yards, zero TDs, three INTs, 53.3 passer rating against.
Talib had one of the best performances of any corner this season when he was on the field. But sitting out for three weeks midseason kept him out of the top five. Talib was at his best prior to his back injury, as he recorded 11 passes defensed and three interceptions in the first seven weeks. He was often one of the least targeted corners from week to week, which correlates to the respect he's earned throughout his nine seasons.
Season stats in coverage: allowed 48 catches on 90 targets for 703 yards, two TDs, two INTs, 68.0 passer rating against.
A highly touted cornerback in the 2016 NFL Draft, Ramsey lived up to the hype in Year 1. He had the attitude -- calling out veterans in his third NFL game -- confidence and ability to play at a high level for Jacksonville's defense. Ramsey has shown improvement every week and is a true weapon for a unit that finished fifth in passing defense. Ramsey had one pass defensed and no picks through Week 12 but since then, he's recorded 13 passes defensed and a pair of picks to close out the season. In December, he was Pro Football Focus' highest-graded cornerback in the league. Ramsey was very physical, tackled well and did everything I wanted to see in his first year.
ON THE OUTSIDE LOOKING IN:Bradley Roby, Denver Broncos; Darius Slay, Detroit Lions; Johnathan Joseph, Houston Texans; Terence Newman, Minnesota Vikings; Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, New York Giants; Casey Hayward, San Diego Chargers; Brent Grimes, Tampa Bay Buccaneers.