It would seem now that Cleveland Browns cornerback Sheldon Brown has been demoted to the nickelback position on the defense. This comes after he felt well enough to play against the Cincinnati Bengals last Sunday after suffering a stinger, only to play in one snap to keep his consecutive games streak alive (which is now at 162).
And with Buster Skrine starting over him on Sunday against the Bills, Brown sees the writing on the wall. One has to give credit to the 11-year veteran for not becoming a distraction with the move, though.
“I’ve been fine,” he said. “I’m fine now and like I said, I’m not going to be a distraction, I never will be a distraction. Too much respect for [Browns General Manager] Tom Heckert and [coach] Pat Shurmur. So it is what it is. I’m here to help this team. If that’s in a mentoring role, I’m here to help mentor. And I have no problem with doing that.” (Source: Cleveland.com)
That being said, it is odd that Brown is currently serving as the nickelback. If Joe Haden wasn’t busy serving a four-game suspension, it would make more sense for Dimitri Patterson to be starting over Brown. But Skrine still comes off as raw, despite his speed. If Brown really was healthy last Sunday, it was obvious that the secondary could have used him.
In a career as long as Browns’, he is sure to have lost a step, but he still has a lot to offer a young secondary. He’ll be able to prove that in the nickel position, which still sees plenty of playing time.