The Redskins didn't need to find a cornerback who had to provide immediate impact from scrimmage. But they needed to find someone who they could develop into a possible starter. Which is why they grabbed Bashaud Breeland in the fourth round. He has talent, can help on special teams but needs work at corner if he wants to become a top-3 guy.
After watching a number of his games from Clemson, here's my scouting report. First, a disclaimer: It’s really hard to gauge a defensive back’s play just based off a TV feed. So I’m not going to pretend that I saw all that he did and exactly how he moved all the time. But there were enough shots that showed him in coverage to at least get a feel. With that out of the way, here we go:
What I liked: His toughness and aggressive play. Decisive in the run game. When I watched David Amerson last year, he was hesitant to get involved in the run game and wasn’t competitive taking on blockers (he was better as a rookie than in college in this area). But that was far from the case with Breeland. Kid never had an issue finding the action. He’ll bring a nasty attitude to corner, which is a positive. Good athlete. He played a lot of press coverage at Clemson, sometimes with a jam and other times without. He’s a good fit for this style with long arms and some strength. Typically played with good balance here, too. In off-man or zone, Breeland usually was only six or seven yards off the ball (by contrast, Amerson was often nine yards off in college; allows him to read longer but that was a bit much). Good blitzer from the outside because of his aggressiveness. Liked how he read the quarterback in zone coverage (on the few plays that really showed this); had a good read and drove on the ball to get one interception. He played a lot of special teams. Made plays as a gunner; also served as a blocker against the gunner. Will help right away on special teams. When guys play physical and go hard on special teams -- especially when a starter --my conclusion: He loves the game. It matters. Also like his versatility; covered from multiple spots and perhaps could play safety in the future, whether in a full-time role or not I don't know. But certainly in some packages.
What I didn’t: Speed. While speed can be overrated at corner -- quickness, discipline matter a ton -- you still have to have a certain amount. At the combine he ran the 40 in 4.62 seconds, not the ideal time for a corner. His length compensates -- as does the way he cuts; good angles, it seems -- but I’ll be curious to see the impact against NFL receivers. And it caused him to be grabby at the end of some long passes, drawing penalties. He could do a better job at the end of a play; he has good hands, but there were a couple plays he was in position to make but didn’t. Though experienced in press, there were a couple times he got off-balance off the line by biting on the receiver’s stem to the outside, allowing the receiver to cross him. Saw him beaten on some double moves. Needs to be a more consistent tackler.