The Atlanta Falcons have bolstered a thin position by moving up in the fourth round to select cornerback Kendall Sheffield from Ohio State in the NFL draft.
The Falcons traded a sixth-round pick to Detroit to move up six spots in the fourth round. Atlanta general manager Thomas Dimitroff again moved up later in the fourth round, trading a seventh-round pick to the Raiders, to select Charleston defensive end John Cominsky. It was Dimitroff’s third trade of the draft.
Sheffield brings speed to coach Dan Quinn’s defense. The 5-foot-11, 193-pound Sheffield set Ohio State’s school indoor record by running the 60-meters dash in 6.63 seconds. He told Atlanta media on Saturday he ran the 40-yard dash in 4.26 seconds early in his Ohio State career.
Cornerback was a position of need after the team released Robert Alford, who signed with Arizona and lost Brian Poole and Justin Bethel as free agents. The Falcons plan for Isaiah Oliver to join Desmond Trufant as the starting cornerbacks. Damontae Kazee, who played at free safety last season, is expected to play the nickel spot.
Sheffield was the Falcons’ first selection since the team picked two offensive linemen — Boston College guard Chris Lindstrom and Washington offensive tackle Kaleb McGary — in the first round. Atlanta traded second- and third-round picks for the No. 31 overall selection used on McGary.
Cominsky (6-5, 286), who played quarterback in high school in Barbeton, Ohio, had 16 career sacks for Division II Charleston (West Virginia).