Carroll presses case for Patriots' Browner

Carroll presses case for Patriots' Browner
March 26, 2014, 9:15 am
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ORLANDO -- What Tebucky Jones could have been, Brandon Browner became.
Pete Carroll, whose out-of-the-box selection of Jones with a first-round pick in the 1998 draft became one of his Patriots millstones, said on Tuesday morning that Browner is the personification of a press cotrner.
“He’s a fantastic football player,” said Carroll, who coached Browner in Seattle prior to Browner joining the Patriots. “He’s a great competitor. He has great depth of understanding of the position. He’s a bump-and-run, press technique since he was a freshman in college back at Oregon State. He was a fantastic player in college, went to Canada and was a fantastic player in Canada. By the time we got him he was so savvy playing the position, he really blossomed again with our commitment to the style of play.”
The 6-foot-3, 220-pound Browner is a departure from the sub-6-foot corners the Patriots have valued for their versatility. While Browner can play off the line, Carroll said that’s not the best way to utilize him.
“He basically presses,” Carroll pointed out. “That’s when he’s at his best, when he’s at the line of scrimmage. He’s built for that. He’s so long and so big and so aggressive, that’s when he’s at his best. I think. Bill [Belichick] will figure that out.”
Browner’s departure from the Seahawks was dictated by finances and the presence of a replacement -- Byron Maxwell -- on the Seattle roster. After Browner was suspended for substance policy violations, Maxwell made Browner expendable.
“Our decision was really dictated by Byron Maxwell,” Carroll explained. “He did a fantastic job when he got his opportunity. He’s a younger player and Brandon, it was gonna cost a lot to get him. Brandon couldn’t be a better football player, but Byron’s a really good football player too.
“Under the (suspension) circumstances (which will erase Browner’s first four games of the season), he’s gonna have to bounce back,” Carroll opined. “He was really stressed by the whole thing but the fact the Patriots stepped up in a significant way and are paying him well and when he gets on the field he’ll be a great competitor.”
For a coach who loves to teach pressure defense that brings its heat beginning with the secondary, the Browner-Darrelle Revis combo is intriguing for Carroll.
“It’s gonna be really fun to watch those guys play together,” he said. “I’m anxious to see how they use them and how they do it. Bill’s a great football coach and he’ll figure out how to use those guys, but I’ll be curious to watch that. I talked to Bill about it and I’m kinda envious. He’s gonna get a really special guy in Brandon.”