Another small school cornerback the Redskins might consider with an early round pick in next month’s draft is Southeastern Louisiana’s Robert Alford.
Like B.W. Webb, Alford solidified his status as a top prospect with a strong showing at the NFL scouting combine last week in Indianapolis.
Alford was a top performer among cornerbacks in the 40-yard dash (4.39 seconds), bench press (17 reps), vertical jump (40 inches) and broad jump (132 inches). With that eye-opening effort, the 5 foot 10, 188 pound Louisiana native likely moved into late second round/early third round territory.
“Once I stepped foot at Southeastern, I had that big knot up on me [because] everybody said I was at a small school,” Alford said during last Sunday’s media session at Lucas Oil Stadium. “Then I had doubters in my ear telling me I wasn't going to make it because I was at Southeastern. So, just to be able to prove those doubters wrong and be able to prove myself to the head coaches and the GMs, I think that would be a big thing for me.”
Alford, who said he had a formal meeting scheduled with the Redskins, began proving the doubters wrong at the Senior Bowl in January. He returned the opening kick off 88 yards deep into the North’s territory. Later in the game, broke up a pair of passes in coverage and intercepted a two-point conversion attempt.
“To prove myself to the coaches that I belong there, that was good,” said Alford, the younger brother of LSU standout and former NFL player Fred Booker. “It wasn’t a big shock to myself because I always felt confident that I could do that. …I always have confidence. I’m never down about myself.”
At Southeastern Louisiana last season, Alford recorded 39 tackles, including five for loss, and intercepted four passes. He also returned a punt for a touchdown.
He said he patterns his game after Pro Bowl cornerback/punt returner Patrick Peterson of the Cardinals.
"I like being versatile,” Alford said. Peterson “can play kickoff, he can play punt return, he can play press and he can play nickel. I even played on the offensive side my senior year. So, I mean, being versatile like Patrick Peterson, that's somebody that I like to model my game after."