Ronald Darby wants to be shutdown NFL cornerback

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In Buffalo, Ronald Darby wasn’t known as a “shutdown corner.”

In fact, he wasn’t even the No. 1 cornerback.

Before the Bills’ current rebuild, as a rookie and sophomore player Darby lined up opposite Stephon Gilmore, prior to his move to the Patriots this offseason.

Now showing speed, agility and hands that imply he could be the Eagles cornerback of the future — and present — Darby still talks to Gilmore non-stop.

“I learned a lot from him and I still talk to him every day,” Darby said Thursday, after an up and down showing against the Dolphins where he played the first quarter. “When I mess up on stuff he tells me and when he messes up on stuff I tell him.”

In the NFC East there will be a slightly different expectation for Darby, as opposed to playing in the AFC East. He’ll be playing against such big names as Dez Bryant, Odell Beckham Jr. and Terrelle Pryor twice a season. There is a great opportunity for him to show he is a shutdown cornerback — as well as enormous criticism for failure.

Does Darby want to shadow the opposing team’s best receiver?

“If you want to get that label as a lockdown corner, yeah,” he said. “I am not afraid to lose battles. At the end of the day my goal is to make more than I lose.”

“That’s what I want to do,” Darby added. “I want to play one-on-one, my will versus yours.”

On September 10 against Washington, Darby will get that chance alongside safties Malcolm Jenkins and Rodney McLeod in what he thinks could be among the best secondaries in football.

“We could be very dangerous,” Darby said. “You have the guys up front coming, defense flying around…  Jenkins coming and running to make a play… you normally don’t see stuff like that, so I feel as though we could be very good.”

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