The Browns have a lot of cornerbacks on the roster, believe it or not. Everyone knows about Joe Haden and Buster Skrine at this point, but let’s go over the rest to see just how daunting a task it might or might not be to field a starting backfield with these guys. Remember, the Browns need a starter on the outside opposite Joe Haden and then will need to decide who best fits the needs as depth, nickel and dime coverage situations.
Of course, this is just what’s currently on the roster. There’s still time for free agency, post-draft trades, and also post-draft cuts. The best cuts usually come when a decent player is about to get paid like an elite player and gets cut ahead of a bonus. Not sure which players fall into that category but Browns fans will remember clamoring for the team to sign Eric Winston who was cut loose by the Texans as he was about to be owed $5.5 million in base salary.
Anyway, the here and now includes the following…
Leon McFadden – 22 years old – 5 ft 10 in – 190 lbs – 3rd round draft pick by the Browns in 2013
McFadden wasn’t necessarily every Browns fans’ top pick for corner in this year’s draft with many pining away for Dee Milliner in the first round and Tyronn Mathieu1 later on. The Browns chose an experienced college starter from San Diego State who has been compared to Brent Grimes and was asked to play a lot of man coverage.
The “bottom line” from NFL.com’s draft profile says all that we know about McFadden right now.
McFadden’s a tenacious three-time All-Mountain West selection possessing the strength, quickness, attitude, and ball skills required of NFL starters, even if his size is not ideal to handle the physicality of veteran wideouts. Many shorter corners who play with similar strength and temperament have succeeded at the next level, which will help him nail down top-75 grades from scouts.
Trevin Wade – 23 years old – 5 ft 11 in – 192 lbs – 7th round pick 2012
Wade was forced into action in 2012 due to injuries and (ahem) other missed time to Joe Haden, Sheldon Brown and Dimitri Patterson. Wade seemed like a bigger player on the field last year than his 5 feet and 11 inches. It remains to be seen just how much the Browns are counting on Wade to be a factor this season competing for the starting spot opposite Joe Haden. You’d like to think that the Browns’ brass liked him so much that they chose against trying to sign a legit free agent at corner. Even without those words coming out of Berea, Wade is one of the prospects Browns fans are hoping to succeed in a big way.
Johnson Bademosi – 22 years old – 6 ft 0 in – 200 lbs – Undrafted Free Agent 2012
Bademosi made the Browns as an undrafted free agent because he could play special teams. He played some corner when Buster Skrine and Joe Haden went down and filled in pretty admirably. In Pat Shurmur’s system there was a rotating captain each week and Bademosi was recommended to be that captain by Phil Dawson, Joe Thomas and D’Qwell Jackson prior to a matchup with the Steelers.
Kevin Barnes – 26 years old – 6 ft 1 in – 185 lbs – Former 3rd round pick in 2009 – Signed one-year contract with the Browns
Barnes became the Redskins’ slot corner in 2011 and Pro Football Focus indicates that it didn’t go too well. “He gave up an extremely unhealthy 12 yards per catch from the slot and will need to really step up over the next 12 months if he wants to stick on with the ‘Skins.” Barnes didn’t stick with the ‘Skins. He was traded to the Lions for an undisclosed conditional draft pick. Apparently Barnes didn’t meet the conditions because he was waived and no compensation was ever given to the Redskins.
Chris Owens – 26 years old – 5 ft 9 in – 180 lbs – Former 3rd round pick in 2009 – Signed one-year contract with the Browns
Owens has been a nickel and dime corner for most of his career. He’s played in 58 games and started 12, all with the Atlanta Falcons. He has three career interceptions. Our friends over at Dawgs By Nature have all the pretty PFF charts showing his performances in all their color-coded glory.
Prince Miller – 25 years old – 5 ft 8 in – 198 lbs – Undrafted in 2010 out of Georgia
Miller has been a frequent flyer between practice squads with the Ravens, Patriots, back to the Ravens, Lions, Jaguars and Browns. Back in college he was a special teams team captain and even returned some punts.
Kent Richardson – 26 years old – 5 ft 11 in – 200 lbs – Undrafted in 2010
Kent Richardson was the defensive back of the year in the Arena Football League when he played for the Philadelphia Soul in 2012, his second year. He signed a futures contract with the Browns. Yes, there is an Arena League Highlight video of his accomplishments…
Josh Aubrey – 22 years old – 5 ft 11 in – 202 lbs – Undrafted free agent by Browns in 2013 from Stephen F. Austin
Josh Aubrey chose to go to Stephen F. Austin to play with his brother Jordan for four years. He was known as an aggressive, physical corner, albeit in a small conference. Just to give you an idea, SFA played against Baylor in 2011 when RG3 was still there. RG3 threw 20 for 22 for 265 yards, three touchdowns while also running for 78 yards on eight carries. Oh yeah, and the game was stopped after three quarters due to lightning with a 48-0 Baylor lead on the scoreboard.
Anyway, none of that has to do with Aubrey directly or conclusively, but he’s been given a chanceand the Browns will apparently see what he can do.
And that’s all I know of for now on the Browns corner situation. I don’t know for sure, but I don’t think I forgot anyone. Please let me know if I did. Certainly could be prettier, but there are a lot of prospects that maybe not all of us have considered too heavily. There’s also time to hit the panic switch and sign some kind of veteran. Hey, maybe Sheldon Brown can come back on a one year deal.
- He has no stupid nicknames here. [↩]