04/29/2012 - A closer look at the Eagles' picks: Round 4/123 - Brandon Boykin, CB, 5-9 1/2, 182, Georgia...Despite his small size, Boykin is a physical, feisty player who had 11 tackles for losses last season. With Joselio Hanson turning 31 in August, Boykin gives the Eagles a replacement option at nickel corner. He also can return punts and kicks. - The Sports Xchange
Boykin may have a small frame, but he came up big to win the Paul Hornung Award as the nation's most versatile player in 2011. He is a formidable athlete as both a cornerback and a kick returner. Scouts will be limited to seeing him on game tapes because he fractured his fibula during Senior Bowl workouts."The timing was terrible, but at the same time the combine and pro day isn't the be-all end-all," Boykin said, naming the two workout events he missed due to the injury. "I feel like I had a really good career. . . . my speed and athleticism shouldn't be a question." Some scouts believe Boykin could run 40 yards under 4.4 seconds. He had three touchdowns on kickoff returns as a sophomore, two for 100 yards each and then added another in 2010 to become the only player in SEC history with three plays of at least 100 yards. He is hardly bashful as a corner, where he surprises bigger opponents by getting right in their face as much as he can rather than playing off and using his speed to catch up. In 1999, this bothered Oklahoma State star Dez Bryant (now with Dallas), who was held to three catches and 77 yards. Boykin's career totals include 159 tackles (20 for a loss), nine interceptions and he averaged 24.2 yards on 110 kickoff returns.
Positives: Has a low, quick backpedal and natural springy step to recover and surge toward the ball. Smooth hips to turn and run with elite straight-line speed. Wasn't often challenged despite height. Very good instincts to excel as a zone cornerback. Competes for the ball and has good anticipation skills and hand-eye coordination. Physical run supporter in the Antoine Winfield mold with short-area explosiveness to leave his mark on ballcarriers. Exhilarating with the ball in his hands, high-ceiling return game prospect.
Negatives: Has to fight for every inch on the field and though willing, will be less-equipped to win on a down-to-down basis in the NFL. Might be viewed as a niche player by teams that don't trust his film and only rely on measuring tape. Eager to take on bigger receivers but aggressiveness can work against him.