The Browns selected Tennessee-Chattanooga cornerback Buster Skrine today in the fifth round (137th overall pick) of the 2011 NFL Draft.
In his four-year collegiate career, Skrine compiled 155 tackles, 21 pass breakups and five interceptions. Last season, he had 39 tackles, eight pass breakups and one interception.
Skrine also established his reputation as a capable kickoff returner. He had 40 career kickoff returns for 891 yards (22.28 average).
When he was a junior, the 5-foot-9, 186-pound Skrine posted a school-record time of 4.22 seconds in the 40-yard dash on Tennessee-Chattanooga's campus. Skrine said he has never played anyone who's faster than him.
Following his selection, Skrine held a conference call with local reporters. Here is a transcript from the question-and-answer session:
Browns defensive back Buster Skrine conference call 4-30-11
(On how he got the nickname Buster) -- “Me and my dad have the same name and his mother started calling me ‘Buster’ for no reason just as a nickname. That’s how I got it.”
(On running a 4.22 40-yard dash in college) -- “I ran a 4.22 the summer of my junior year and I was running 4.2’s that whole summer so I thought I was going to run a 4.2. When I came to the Combine I was looking for the same, but they had 4.37.”
(On how he will fit in the NFL including special teams) -- “I definitely want to contribute in the return game, both punt returns and kick returns, and on defense of course.”
(On his 360 pounds bench press in college) -- “I bench pressed 360 lbs. when we maxed at school. The last time I max bench pressed was right before I left school and I got 360 pounds.”
(On the type of cornerback he is) -- “I am a tough corner. I play bigger than my height. I am fast, I can cover well and I am coachable.”
(On if he has ever played against anyone who is faster than he is) -- “No, sir.”
(On how he compensates for his lack of height) -- “I just play bigger than what I am. The size thing doesn’t really get to me so I see myself as a player just like any other player on the field. I go out there and play my game and try to play better than everyone else out there.”
(On if he has been underestimated) -- “Coming out of high school I was 5-7, 145 lbs. so I had a lot of Division I schools call me and come to my school and say they were going to offer, but they would leave not offering. Coming out of high school I had 11 Division I-AA offers and that’s how that went.”
(On if he thinks he should have been drafter higher because of his speed) -- “I prayed that God would put me in the best position so I am not going to complain about being a fifth-round pick at all. Before the draft I was getting a lot of three and four, but I am happy for where I am and I am just ready to get started.”
(On what skills he has to play against taller receivers) -- “I am definitely going to be able to run with taller receivers and I can jump so jump balls shouldn’t be an issue. Also, I am physical and I have good technique so that helps me with the tall receivers.”
(On anyone who he looks up to as a player) -- “I really don’t have any role models, but I can tell you who I like that plays and that was undersized. I like watching Asante Samuel. He is an undersized corner and he just seems to have the ball in his hand all the time.”
(On working out or visiting with the Browns) -- “I did a private workout with the Browns with coach (Jerome) Henderson.”
(On the biggest adjustment from FCS to the NFL) -- “It’s probably the speed and people will be a little bigger, but I can make the adjustment. It shouldn’t be any problem.”
(On where his jumping ability and vertical ranked at the combine) -- “I think it was ninth, maybe. I was looking to jump a little bit higher than 37 because during training, I was jumping 40-41 inches. I felt like I didn’t warm up enough right before the jumps because that was our first event.”
(On considering professional track because of his quickness) -- “I’ve always been a football player so football has always been my number one goal to play professionally. In college, I ran on the 4x100 team and I was the anchor.”
(On slipping while he ran a 4.37 at the combine) -- “My second attempt, I actually slipped. It was about 10 yards out of my start and I stumbled so yes, I did.”
(On what he would have ran at the combine without the stumble) -- “4.2.”
(On where he’s at right now watching the NFL Draft) -- “I’m in Atlanta, Georgia with my family, training.”
(On his best time in the open 100) -- “I haven’t ran the open 100 in college and when I was in high school, I was undersized but I was a 10.7 100.”