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Thursday, September 1, 2011
Scouting report on CB Molden

By Mike Reiss

The Patriots claimed cornerback Antwaun Molden on waivers on Wednesday, and assuming everything falls in line with a physical, the former Houston Texan will officially be added to the roster.

ESPN.com AFC South reporter Paul Kuharsky obliged this morning when asked for a scouting report on Molden:

"They were really big on him when he first arrived in Houston as a third-round pick in 2008. I remember being at camp that first year and you ask the question, 'Who has been surprisingly good?' Eveyrbody was raving about Molden, but he never lived up to that initial good impression," Kuharsky relayed.

"Here is a team that has been desperate for DB help that went out and signed the second-best cornerback available in the free-agent market [Johnathan Joseph]. They're not going to let people go that they think can help a secondary that was on pace to be historically bad for a good stretch of last season.

"Molden looks the part (6-foot-1, 200 pounds), but he was dinged up consistently for them. As they brought in more and more people, he fell deeper and deeper down the depth chart. Maybe in a new situation, with new coaching and a new scheme, he has a chance. But if I'm a Patriots fan, I'm not doing cartwheels thinking that this guy will be a savior. I'm thinking of him as a back-of-the-cornerback depth chart candidate to be developed."

ESPN Boston colleague Chris Forsberg offers the following as well:
Take a closer look at Molden and you'll find a player that hasn't seen a lot of snaps as an NFL defensive back. According to defensive snap counts logged by Pro Football Focus, Molden has been on the field for a mere 32 snaps over eight career games as a defensive back (dropping back into pass coverage just 20 times). Here's their breakdown in his three seasons with Texas:

2008 - 4 games, 9 snaps, 7 in pass coverage
2009 - 1 game, 14 snaps, 5 in pass coverage
2010 - 3 games, 9 snaps, 8 in pass coverage

The numbers at Pro Football Focus also show that Molden has been thrown at just once in his career (it did result in a 2-yard loss). Needless to say, Molden's been primarily a special teams players during his three-year career.