Former Maryland cornerback Deonte Banks was selected with the 24th pick of the first round by New York Giants in Thursday’s 2023 NFL Draft.
Banks is the first Terp drafted this year and just the fourth Maryland first round draft pick since 2009. The most recent before him was Darnell Savage in 2019.
He is the fourth cornerback drafted this year. The Giants moved up one pick to draft Banks, giving up the 25th, 160th and 240th picks in the draft to do so.
The Edgewood High School product solidified himself as one of the top players at the position with a sparkling senior campaign in which he was named Honorable Mention All-Big Ten after forcing 13 incompletions and allowing just 258 yards according to Pro Football Focus.
“Deonte, he can just do a lot,” fellow Maryland corner Tarheeb Still said in December. “He could really just line up a lot of places, cover a lot of different types of people, tight ends, slots, outside receivers … you put him out there to really just go on an island and just go at it with your number one.”
Banks committed to Maryland as a three star recruit in the class of 2019 and saw early playing time in his freshman season, starting eight games and recording an interception. During the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, Banks appeared in all five of the games and started three.
He started the first two games of his junior year in 2021 before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury. The injury forced him to take a step back from the sport, he said during a press conference in the middle of the 2022 campaign.
“Football’s my heart and I lost it, so I needed a break,” Banks said.
Banks enters a cornerback room with few established options other than Adoree’ Jackson and is the only Terp on the Giants’ roster.
The departures of Banks and fellow corner Jakorian Bennett create a hole at the position for Maryland. The Terps hope the arrival of Cincinnati transfer Ja’Quan Sheppard along with internal development can help mitigate the loss.