Height: 5'11" Weight: 197 lbs
Drafted: 4th round, 102nd Overall
The Washington Redskins drafted Cornerback Bashaud Breeland in the fourth round of the 2014 NFL Draft. He is a guy with a lot of potential, and in his second year has a lot of room to grow and solidify himself as a starter at his position for years to come. Here's what you need to know about the second year man:
#1. Breeland played quarterback and defensive back at Allendale Fairfax High School (South Carolina). He also played basketball and track. He won a state title in the 400 meter hurdles as a sophomore and junior. As a 2010 recruit, he was ranked the 28th best safety and the 13th best player in South Carolina. He committed to Clemson over Penn State, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia Tech.
#2. At Clemson, he redshirted his freshman season (2010). He did receive the scout team defense award. As a redshirt freshman(2011), he registered 47 tackles, six passes defensed, two interceptions, and a tackle for loss. He regressed a little in his sophomore season (2012), recording 33 tackles and no interceptions. His best season was as a junior in 2013. He had 56 total tackles, 10 passes defensed, four interceptions, five tackles for loss, and two sacks. As a result of that, he received a second team, All-ACC media selection and third team All-ACC coaches selection.
#3. According to Mike Jones of the Washington Post, Breeland showed off his work ethic to former Redskins defensive backs coach Raheem Morris in 2014:
"He's weird," Morris laughed. He goes home and comes back a lot. He'll go home and circle back, and he'll send me a text saying, 'I'm about to look at this.' And I'll say, 'No look at this,' or whatever the case may be. But he shows up all times of the day. He may come back at 9 when we're about to leave, or he might stay longer with [veteran safety] Ryan [Clark] in the afternoon. But he does a lot of his own personal stuff."
Breeland was responsible for holding Dez Bryant to 30 yards in the first matchup with the Dallas Cowboys last season. He broke up a Tony Romo pass to Dez Bryant on fourth down in overtime to seal Washington's 20-17 victory. Was Breeland's success his rookie year a surprise? He says no:
"Not at all," I feel like I do a good job of preparing, doing film study and practicing throughout the week, so everything that happens in the game, it really comes natural to me. Coming in, I knew it was going to be hard as a junior coming out to get on the field. So I wanted to do the little things."
#4. Breeland is using this off season to improve his game as a whole. According to Redskins.com's Stephen Czarda, Breeland is focused on improving his football IQ and he learned a lot in his first season as a pro:
"I wasn't perfect. I jumped a lot of passes, but I'm trying to improve on my tracking as well as my technique at the line with my checking. I'm also trying to gain more football knowledge. My football IQ can be much better. [The season] taught me a lot of things about myself as a player. It showed me that I was capable of things that others didn't think I was capable of doing. I just kept faith and believed in myself. It turned out good for me."
#5. He will have more opportunities in his sophomore season as a Washington Redskin to pad his stats. He started 15 of 16 games in 2014 at cornerback and strong safety.
Bottom Line: Bashaud Breeland is good young cornerback with the opportunity to become great. He's proven that he can make a difference on the field. His best football is ahead of him.