RICHMOND -- Bashaud Breeland headed off the practice field Tuesday with pride washing across his face. Put together a list of training camp standouts after one week and the Washington Redskins' third-year cornerback is pushing for top honors.
Blanket coverage is one thing. Generating turnovers is another. That aspect of the 2015 fourth-rounder's game is a work in progress, yet after Tuesday, he had five picks in five straight full practices. Interceptor, thy name is Breeland.
"That's my mindset," Breeland stated. "Make a play a day."
Told of the five-in-five streak, the corner balked. Josh Norman's tag-team partner wanted to set the statistical record straight.
"Six, if you count OTAs," he said.
"I'm just trying to get better, every aspect of my game," Breeland continued during an interview with Breaking Burgundy. "Causing turnovers is something I didn't do well last year. ... I've finished with two each year I've played so far. I'm just trying to contribute more in that aspect."
Breeland won't lack for interception opportunities once the games turn real. The energetic Norman is a Pro Bowler and arguably the NFL's top corner. Even if he's defending the opponent's top receiver, some quarterbacks will instinctively pass on passing in his direction. That means more throws at Breeland.
"Most likely," he said with the calm and direct eye contact to the reporter that comes with self-assurance.
Having two strong cornerbacks gives the coaching staff scheme flexibility no matter the opponent.
"We’re not going to do a lot of traveling [with coverage], most likely, and [Breeland is] going to be on some really good receivers throughout the year," Redskins coach Jay Gruden said. "We’re going to count on him in a big way. ...He’s competing his butt off out here and doing a great job.”
Norman was asked Friday about Breeland's confidence.
"I think that just resonates in him to be the all he can be, to outdo me, outdo anybody else that’s out there on that football field. ...Once he develops that confidence and swagger about him to where no one can beat him, he’ll be just fine because he has that in him to be."
Note these early practices. Remember performances against the likes of Cowboys Pro Bowl receiver Dez Bryant. What if Norman is wrong. What if Breeland has that "no one can beat me" stance already?
Unlike many participants in those corner-receiver matchups, Breeland doesn't ooze arrogance. Perhaps he doesn't feel the need to diva up. Breeland is just confident he's the man for the job. The newfound playmaking indicates why. Quarterbacks, you've been warned.
"You can stand up and make them stop coming [your way] or you fall down," Breeland said. "I don't think I'm going to be the one to fall down."
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