For the first time in years, I have a good feeling about the Browns draft. No weird trades, no dope fiends or lunatics. No longshot Messianic would-be saviors. We didn't mortgage the future to get some hotshot quarterback. Just solid players that are going to improve the weaknesses of the team.
In past years I had a sick, sick feeling about the NFL draft and our Cleveland Browns. Like when we drafted a 28 year old quarterback with a first round pick, and used four draft picks including the fourth overall to select a running back who Jim Brown said was comparable to a third round draft pick....or when we used three picks to get a running back who had had major knee surgery on both knees...or picked up a talented dope fiend wide receiver. Even last year there was a sneaking suspicion that the owner may have made the selection of quarterback Johnny Manziel. This year felt different.
The plan is that we are going to play Power Football in the AFC North. We are going to fix the worst defensive line in the NFL We are going to run the ball six ways from sundown and we are going to beat up other teams.
Welcome to Cleveland....
Round 1, Pick 12 (12), 6'2" 339 Washington. The Browns were last in the NFL in run defense. That is going to change.
5'9" 207 Miami. Duke gives the Browns pass catching ability that they lacked in 2014. He can immediately become the third down back while leaving the heavy lifting to Isaiah Crowell, Terrance West and Glenn Winston. He was a tremendous kickoff returner, and the Browns will probably try him at Punt Returner, where they were also at the bottom of the league.
Xavier Cooper, Defensive End, Round 3, Pick 32 (96) (from Patriots) 6'3" 293 Washington St. Though listed as a defensive tackle, he will probably play defensive end in the Browns 3-4. Look, you guys finished last in the NFL in run defense, so Ray Farmer is going to draft three new guys for the defensive line, plus free agent and former Pro Bowler Randy Starks.
Ibraheim Campbell, Strong Safety, Round 4, Pick 16 (115) (from Bills) 5'11" 208 Northwestern. This fellow would be a backup for Donte Whitner, but I'll bet that he will get a shot on special teams.
Vince Mayle, Wide Receiver, Round 4, Pick 24 (123) (from Cardinals) 6'2" 224 Washington St. Browns Nation has been screaming for quarterbacks and wide receivers, so Farmer throws them a bone finally. We get a guy who is more of a physical possession type receiver for cold weather football, rather than the burner to catch bombs in a wind-free dome. Folks, we don't play in a dome, quit crying for guys who excel in a dome environment. Mayle will compete for the #5 receiver spot.
Charles Gaines Cornerback, Round 6, Pick 13 (189), 5'10" 180 Louisville. Do the Browns need a cornerback with two Pro Bowlers (Joe Haden and Tramon Williams) plus rookies K'Waun Williams, Pierre Desir and Justin Gilbert? Yes, because Desir and especially Gilbert struggled as rookies. Gilbert is trying to play himself out of the league despite being a first round pick, and Desir was also very erratic.
Malcolm Johnson Fullback and H-Back, Round 6, Pick 19 (195) (from Texans). 6'2" 231, Mississippi St. This fellow is listed as a tight end, but he played both fullback and tight end in college. My guess is that he will be a fullback or H-Back type player used for run blocking.
Randall Telfer, Tight End, Round 6, Pick 22 (198) (from Cardinals). 6'4" 250 USC . Telfer is regarded highly as a blocker, rather than a pass catcher. The Browns already have receiving tight ends in Gary Barnidge, Rob Housler and Jim Dray
Hayes Pullard, Inside Linebacker, Round 7, Pick 2 (219) (from Patriots through Titans) 6'0" 240 USC . They say he is good in pass coverage.
Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Cornerback, Round 7, Pick 24 (241) (from Cardinals) 5'9" 192 Oregon. This guy was highly rated but coming back from serious knee surgery. This is the kind of guy the Browns used to take in the second round.