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2017 SB Nation Writers NFL Mock Draft - Cleveland Browns Take S Budda Baker at No. 33

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NCAA Football: Stanford at Washington Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

The annual SB Nation Writers Mock Draft has been continuing over at our network's draft coverage stream. The way it works is that each NFL blog picks a player for their team when their site is on the clock.

The first round finished recently, and we’re on to round to. To recap what I did in round one:

  • No. 1: DE Myles Garrett (link)
  • No. 12: QB Mitchell Trubisky (link)

With the first round in the books, I was on the clock to begin the second round at No. 33 overall. I’ve been advocating the need for a safety the past two years in free agency and the draft, so I couldn’t go any longer without taking one.

No. 33 - S Budda Baker, Washington

Safety is a position that was sacrificed last offseason, as the team let Tashaun Gipson walk in free agency and cut veteran Donte Whitner. This offseason, the Browns offered the richest contract to the top free agent safety, Tony Jefferson, but he turned it down to play on a cheaper deal with the Ravens. Cleveland was also in the market for a few other free agent safeties, but things just didn’t work out.

The team has thus spent a good amount of time scouting the top safety prospects in this year’s draft class. It’ll be tempting on the second day of the draft to trade this pick to the highest bidder, but last year they ultimately stayed at No. 33 to select defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah. This year, I’ll pick them to do the same with the top safety on their board. Whether that is Baker, Peppers, or someone else remains to be seen, but I’m banking on Baker.

To see what Dan Kadar thought of our pick (and what people are saying in the comments section), go here. The fan voting has us at a grade of 3.97 right now (1 = F; 2 = D; 3 = C; 4 = B; 5 = A), which doesn’t seem too bad.

If you feel the pick should be rated higher (or lower), feel free to head on over and vote! I will be back on the clock at No. 52 overall.