With the 137th pick in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns selected CB Buster Skrine out of the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga. Skrine was one the players the Browns had met with personally and scouted at his Pro Day, so the selection should not come as much of a surprise. We're getting at the point in the draft now where you hope guys can contribute later down the depth chart, and that is what Skrine can offer.
Skrine is definitely known for his speed. He is listed as having a 4.37 time in the 40, but he was also unofficially timed at 4.29 for one of his runs at the scouting combine. Assuming Eric Wright is brought back, this allows the Browns to have a true fourth cornerback without having to rely on Mike Adams shifting out of the safety position. Here is the scouting report from Sideline Scouting on Skrine:
Positives: Extremely speedy corner... Has decent upper-body strength, especially for his size, benched 360 pounds in team workouts, put up 20 reps (at 225 pounds) at the combine... Has good physicality for his size, is not afraid to mix it up and fill hard in run support... Runs well with the ball when returning and after interceptions, has pretty good vision and great straight-line speed... Not the surest tackler, but loves to lower his shoulder and hit receivers after the catch, has pretty good pop for his size... Has adequate ball skills, does not drop a lot of sure interceptions... Is as quick as he is speedy, has very solid footwork, had the fastest shuttle time of all cornerbacks at the combine... No character or injury concerns to speak of... Will be able to contribute at some level fairly quickly in the NFL, may get some looks as a returner as the draft approaches.
Negatives: Did not put up great statistics in college, only recorded 155 tackles and five interceptions at Chattanooga... Is a little shorter than the average corner, but has adequate bulk and a solid frame... Will need to work on tackling skills if he is to be a solid corner at the next level, tends to lunge too often, but does a good job of hitting bigger backs low... Not a big playmaker in coverage... Not always in good position when running in man coverage, is seen too often giving up the inside, which will be a problem against NFL receivers... Will get out-muscled by bigger NFL receivers... Does not appear to have great leaping ability in pads... Looks a little stiff in the hips... Is still raw for a cornerback, not especially skilled in any particular facet of the position, will need some coaching to be successful at the next level.