The Wolf Pack football team opens the season Aug. 30 against Southern Utah. Every day until the season opener, we will count down the team's 25 most important players in 2014. Here's a look at No. 17.
17. CB Evan Favors
Hometown: Elk Grove, Calif.
2013 statistics: 12 games (10 starts): 43 tackles, one TFL, one interception, five passes defended
Why he's important: Nevada wants to be more aggressive in its blitz packages, and to be able to do that, it will need to leave its corners on an island at times. Favors will be one of those corners. He's one of the fastest players on Nevada's defense and has good-enough size for a college cornerback. He's a physical player and will be asked to lock down in one-in-one situations plenty of times this season.
Ideal role: Despite competition by Elijah Mitchell and Randy Uzoma, Favors has a firm lead for the starting cornerback job opposite Charles Garrett. Favors started 10 games last season and has more experience than Mitchell and Uzoma, who are both sophomores. Favors, who tore his ACL as a freshman, has the smarts, confidence, athleticism and size to be an above-average MWC cornerback.
2014 forecast: 12 games (12 starts): 50 tackles, three TFL, one sack, two interceptions, 10 passes defended
Did you know? Favors has three half-brothers who played college football: Jerry Favors (Nevada/South Dakota), Brian Favors (UC Davis) and Kenny Favors (South Carolina). Jerry Favors played at Nevada in 1988 and 1989 (before Evan was born) as a running back/kick returner.
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