Several members of the media have criticized the Cleveland Browns over the years for not getting playmakers.
Tonight, they picked a guy in the first round who scores touchdowns in Baylor WR Corey Coleman, who scored 20 of them last season.
We doubt that Coleman is the guy who Sashi Brown was talking about as the guy they were targeting at the eighth overall pick, we figure that was Oregon DE DeForest Buckner, who was taken one spot ahead of Cleveland at #7 to the 49ers.
So, the front office traded down to #15, picking up another third round pick this year (the Browns now have five of the top 77 choices and seven of the top 100), and another second round pick in ’17, meaning they have two choices in that round.
You can make your Ray Farmer jokes about small wide receivers, because Coleman is just 5’10” and weighs 194 pounds. But the scouting report on Coleman is that he is a home run hitter, a deep threat, someone who can score from anywhere on the field.
That’s something the Browns have lacked for years.
Coleman’s weaknesses are his hands, which causes us to raise an eyebrow, and that he played in a spread offense, so he hasn’t been exposed to the different routes they run in professional football.
We do have confidence in this coaching staff that they will address a players’ weakness and get them to improve. We don’t know if we could have said that in the past.
However, we still feel that by moving down to #8, and then to #15, Cleveland missed out on an elite talent. Perhaps the best player in this draft, Buckner, went one pick ahead of their selection, and if he was the guy they wanted, they should have stayed at #2 and picked him.
That’s the point we have been making for the last three weeks or so. The Browns need elite talent. Why not start collecting it now.
Coleman looks like a good prospect, and he definitely fits an area of need, but is he potentially a dominant player? None of the scouting reports we have read reflects that.
We felt the Browns had an opportunity to get a dominant player, which Buckner could be. He was rated the best pass rusher in the draft and Cleveland could have had him if they just would have stood pat at #2.
That’s why we were thumbs down on trading out of that pick. And it kind of blew up in the Browns’ face when the Niners took Buckner.
It doesn’t mean that Coleman is a bad choice. Hopefully, he will give the Browns a player at the receiver position that other teams will have to game plan for. That’s been a need for a long, long time.
However, the question is he a difference maker? A player who will be a foundation for the building process this regime is putting together.
We don’t think we will be sitting here five years from now, with the Browns making their first playoff appearance since 2002, and saying that it all started with Corey Coleman.
Could you imagine that if they had picked Buckner, or Joey Bosa, or even Zeke Elliott?
So, today the Browns have another chance to take the best player still remaining on their board. Our guess is they will trade down again.
This is not to say Brown and his crew will not be successful. We like their plan of starting over completely.
But passing on what could be elite talent needs to be questioned.
The gathering of extra picks will no doubt help the Browns develop the depth needed to compete in the NFL, but you need great players too.