PALO ALTO CA - OCTOBER 23: Owen Marecic #48 of the Stanford Cardinal runs with the ball against the Washington State Cougars at Stanford Stadium on October 23 2010 in Palo Alto California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
With the No. 124 overall pick in the 4th round of the 2011 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns went with fullback Owen Marecic out of Stanford. I wouldn't say that fullback was ruled out as a position the Browns would consider, but this one seems like the biggest surprise so far.
Maybe some of the surprise comes from the fact that fans hope it doesn't mean we've seen the last of Lawrence Vickers. I don't think it does; we carried an unnecessary fourth tight end all of last year and still have the option to switch that to three tight ends and two fullbacks.
With that said, Marecic seems to be considered a tough player and a better fit as a receiver out of the backfield in the West Coast Offense than Vickers would be:
The Browns grab a throwback fullback in the fourth round. Marecic is a whammer at the position with the strength and toughness to move defenders out of the hole. As a two-way player (linebacker-fullback), he becomes a core special teamer immediately for the Browns. (NFL.com)
His versatility as a special teams player is something I love, especially if he can bring some of his toughness as a blocker on the return team for Joshua Cribbs. The Browns were fine in coverage last year, but they did not seem sharp in blocking for the return game on kickoffs and punts.
Not to make a big deal out of this either too, but if Peyton Hillis created some buzz for being a white running back, imagine Hillis and Marecic back there at the same time.