Browns Draft Athleticism For Most Part

After all the rumors about the Browns taking local favorite Mitchell Trubisky with the first overall pick, common sense took over and they selected pass rusher Myles Garrett with Texas A & M with the choice.

Garrett was at the top of most analysts draft boards, so Sashi Brown and Paul DePodesta didn’t overthink it, they took the best player available, which you should if you have the first pick in the draft.

As we have written before, we have followed the Browns for over 50 years, and they’ve never had a dominant pass rusher.  Hopefully, they filled that need today.

As for possible scenarios talked about during the day of the draft, that is trading up from #12 for Trubisky, those plans were thwarted when the Bears moved up to #2 to take the Mentor native.

There were several potentially good players waiting with the Browns’ second first round choice, but instead of taking Ohio State S Malik Hooker or Deshaun Watson, they traded with Houston, who did take the Clemson QB.

In return, Cleveland picked up another first round pick in 2018 and received the Texans’ 25th selection this year.

This gives the Browns five picks in the first two rounds next year, and infuriated fans who wanted the team to take somebody, anybody.

When they finally picked at #25, they took versatile defender Jabrill Peppers from Michigan.

We would have to classify this as new defensive coordinator Gregg Williams’ new toy, as we would bet he will primarily be a strong safety, but he can be used near the line of scrimmage too, and also fills a need as a punt returner.

The best thing we can say about Peppers is he’s a football player.  He can be used all over the place, and he played at a big time program which this regime likes.

There was one more move to be made when Cleveland moved back into the first round to take the 29th pick to take Miami TE David Njoku, another freaky athlete.

Our guess is it will not be long before Gary Barnidge is let go by the Browns, as he is over 30 years old, and this front office doesn’t seem to want anyone of that ilk besides Joe Thomas.

What do all of these picks have in common?  They are phenomenal athletes.  If you watched the NFL Combine, you saw what Garrett can do.  He’s got speed, power, and great leaping ability.

Peppers played some tailback at Michigan as well as his defensive duties, and at the combine, did drills with the linebackers and the secondary players.

Njoku is considered a rare athlete, with speed agility and explosiveness.  He’s only 20 years old, so he can get bigger as he matures.

As for the quarterback, remember that the draft did not end last night.  There are still six rounds to go and the Browns have a lot of picks.

Second, even if Cleveland would have drafted a QB last night, we would have started Cody Kessler at the beginning of the season anyway.  And if they draft a guy today, there is no pressure to start him right away.

If you are one of the quarterback obsessed, we understand you are not happy with the what happened last night in regards to the Cleveland Browns.

However, if you are about adding talent to a football team that needs it, you are happy today.  The Browns have helped their defense, and whoever the starting quarterback will be in 2017.

JD

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Browns Media Continuing QB Envy

Yesterday, Cleveland Browns’ executive Sashi Brown returned to his lawyer roots and basically sidestepped any question thrown at him by the media.

As usual, what did they expect him to do?  Did they really think Brown was going to tell them exactly what the Browns were going to do in free agency and in the draft?

Brown even said the team would be interested in listening to offers for the first overall pick, and of course, he should listen.  What if Indianapolis offered QB Andrew Luck for the choice?  You would have to take it.

Now, that’s not likely, so the probability is Cleveland will keep the first overall pick, and should take Texas A & M pass rusher Myles Garrett.

To be sure, this will offend the wacky members of the media here who are obsessed with the quarterback position.  We have often said these people’s jobs don’t depend on making good choices in the draft, so they are always in favor of picking a QB.

In our opinion, one of the top three quarterbacks available this year (Mitch Trubisky, Deshaun Watson, or Deshone Kizer) will be there at #12, when the Browns have their second pick in the first round.

So, you can still get a first round passer and also get the guy most scouts/draft experts think is the best player in the draft.

Does anyone else think it’s funny that the people who believe you have to use a first round pick on a QB are also enamored with potential free agent Kirk Cousins?  Cousins was a fourth round pick.  How did he overcome that status to become a productive starting quarterback in the NFL?

We also don’t believe for a minute that Jimmy Garoppolo is off the market.  Our guess is no one is offering the first round pick the Patriots thought they could get for Tom Brady’s back up, so they are trying to drive up the price.

Remember the Patriots traded Jamie Collins to the Browns because they didn’t want to pay him big money.  If Brady wants to play three or four more years, they aren’t going to pay huge cash on his back up.

That means New England is motivated to move the former Eastern Illinois product, which puts another QB on the market.

Add to that mix, Tyrod Taylor and possibly Colin Kaepernick, although we don’t know how much interest there will be in him because of his recent performance, and now you have five quarterbacks who are out there for teams in need.

Most draft gurus say besides the Browns, the following teams drafting before Cleveland need QBs:  San Francisco, Chicago, New York Jets, and Buffalo.

We don’t believe that all four will choose quarterbacks, because at least a couple of teams will feel the same as the Browns and determine none of the college guys are worth a top five or top ten pick, and will either trade down or wait until round two.

So, in our opinion, there is no need to trade up or take a QB with the first overall pick.  Someone will be there at #12, hopefully Watson or Trubisky.

As for the Sashi Brown and Paul DePodesta?  They aren’t going to say anything worthwhile.

JD

 

Browns Need To Address QB…Now!

If you have read this site in the past few months, you know that we are not in the group who believe the Cleveland Browns need to take a quarterback with the first overall pick in this spring’s NFL Draft.

We will stand by our opinion that Texas A & M pass rusher Myles Garrett should be the pick at #1.

However, that doesn’t mean the Browns should not address the quarterback position before the 2017 season starts, either.

We have had the opinion in the past that the Cleveland Browns are like the sign in a bar, “free drinks tomorrow”.  The front office has told you in the past that they will be good next year.

However, he have heard some in the media saying the Browns should go defensive in this draft and put off looking for a passer in the 2018 draft.

No, no, no, no, no, NO!!!!

Sashi Brown and Paul DePodesta will never, repeat never, have more draft capital than they have right now.  They have five choices in the first 65 picks in April.  One of them should be used to draft a QB, or at least used in a trade to get the signal caller this franchise can build around.

Perhaps it would be dealing the first pick in the second round to New England to get Jimmy Garoppolo.  We realize some in the media would give up the first overall pick to get Tom Brady’s back up, but we believe #33 and perhaps a pick in the first three rounds of the ’18 draft would be enough to get the former second round pick.

Or, the Browns could use the #12 overall choice to draft Mitch Trubisky or Deshaun Watson from the college ranks, and start to develop the selection as the guy to build the franchise around.

In that case, you start the regular season with Cody Kessler as the starter and bring along the rookie to be able to hit the field in the second half of the regular season, or perhaps the beginning of the ’18 campaign.

Those would be our preferences.

Why not a guy like Tyrod Taylor or Jay Cutler?  It’s simply a factor of the known vs. the unknown.

Garroppolo, Trubisky, or Watson may turn out to be busts, but they also could wind up being top ten QB’s in the NFL.

The reason people have made for Taylor and/or Cutler is that they are better than the current Browns’ quarterbacks.  That’s not setting the bar very high, and if you have five picks in the top 65 selections in the draft, you have to have the mindset that you are going to find the right guy.

Taylor is 27 years old, and is a great athlete.  But is he a difference maker at QB?

He’s started 28 NFL games and has had one 300 yard passing game.

His average yards per attempt ranked 22nd in the league in 2016, although he was 11th in 2015.  His reputation is that he makes a lot of safe throws and doesn’t turn the ball over.  Thus, the dreaded “game manager” label.

The point on Taylor and/or Cutler is if you ranked all of the NFL quarterbacks, they would probably both rank in the bottom ten in the league.

If you are going to take a shot on getting the QB, you have to aim higher than someone who will be in the bottom third of the NFL.

It may not work out, but you have to take the shot.

And you have to take the chance now.  No more postponing the decision for another year.  It’s time to get the guy who can lead the Cleveland Browns in the future.  They have the picks to get it done now.

JD