It happened, at long last! The NFL draft commenced on Thursday night and the Browns executed The Most Important Draft Of Our Lifetimes 2017™ The Browns selected with the very first and second-to-last-picks, and eight players in betweeb. As last year, the Browns acquired future draft capital via trading down. Unlike last year, they also traded up to acquire players they were targeting, which netted quite a haul.
Below is a snapshot of our newest acquisitions, (including our UFDA's at the bottom)
1st Pick Overall: Myles Garrett - EDGE, Texas A&M
So the Browns did what everyone expected them to do and took the outstanding EDGE from TAMU. No complaints here, Garrett is now a cornerstone piece to a rebuilt defensive unit under the direction of Greg Williams. Let's get after it!
1st Round, #25 overall: Jabrill Peppers - S, Michigan
So in order to get here first the Browns had to trade down from 12 to 25. In the process, they picked up the Texans' 1st round pick next year. At 25, the Browns aggravated many in the 'base by taking a guy without an apparent position. However, no doubt Williams' influence is all over this and Peppers has a no-joke attitude about football so I'm feeling cautiously optimistic.
|5'11||213||30 3/4||RS SO||130.7||4.46||19||35.5||128.0|
1st Round, #29 overall: David Njoku - TE, Miami
TRADE! Yeppers, we jumped back into the first round, giving up our #33 as well as the first pick in the 4th round. That was our only 4th, but as things would work out, we'd get another one. We did this so as to acquire Njoku, who's as talented a TE prospect as you will ever see. This guy's a day one starter.
2nd Round, Pick 20 (#52 Overall): DeShone Kizer - QB, Notre Dame
WOW! I was thinking we'd take Josh Dobbs at this spot (he would end up going to Pittsburgh later on) but am thrilled we went with Kizer instead. Plenty of issues that need to be worked through but there's a lot of good clay to work with here. I think this is indicative of an overall team-building philosophy but for today, Browns got (IMO) the third best QB in the draft and the one with (perhaps) the most upside. Good stuff
|6'4||230||9 7/8||RS SO||86.6||4.83||30.5||107.0|
Third Round, Pick One (#65 Overall): Larry Ogunjobi - DL, North Carolina Charlotte
This was not thought to be a draft that was strong in the DL position group, but with the 1st pick in the 3rd round, the Browns grab a big, fast, SPARQy DL who will no doubt be the first on the field next to Danny Shelton when the Browns have four down. All 'bout it
|6'3||305||32 5/8||RS SR||114.8||4.97||26||32.0||116.0|
Fourth Round, Pick 20 (#126 Overall): Howard Wilson - CB, Houston
ANOTHER TRADE! Yes indeed this is a new aggressive style being incorporated by Analytics. We trade the 1st pick & 32nd picks in the 5th round (#'s 145 & 175) in order to jump back into the 4th (we also pocketed Denver's #252, the 2nd-to-last pick in the draft). With that pick we take Wilson, a tall Corner with some injury history but solid play and of course, decent SPARQ
|6'1||184||31 3/8||RS SO||115.9||4.57||33.5||119.0|
Fifth Round, Pick 16 (#160 Overall) Roderick Johnson - OT, Florida State
Yet ANOTHER trade up. As with the last one, Browns retain the same number of net picks they enter the day with, as they swap their 38th pick in the 5th round (#181) and their 4th pick in the 6th (#188) for the Jets' sixteenth pick of the 5th round and the sixth pick in the 7th round (#224). With it they take Johnson, a teammate of Cam Erving's at FSU, and who may be in a position to supplant his former teammate (along with second-year man Schon Coleman) on the right side
*this is funny to me because it happened to Florida State
Sixth Round, 1st Pick (#185): Caleb Brantley - DL, Florida
For the whole day I kept wondering why Brantley kept falling. Now of course I know about the unsettling allegations recently leveled against him. However, that didn't seem to affect Gareon Conley. Maybe I'll end up being wrong, but from my vantage point there isn't a great deal of tangible fire to the Brantley smoke. Sashi made it clear that they aren't messing around if it turns out to be true, but if it goes like I think it will then we may have gotten the steal of the draft. This guy was thought to be a late first rounder all the way up to this episode. If it pans out our DL got about as much improved as we could have possibly hoped for
Seventh Round, Pick Six (#224 Overall): Zane Gonzalez - K, Arizona St
I absolutely love this front office. Yes, it's a kicker, but he happens to be the best kicker available. Guy is very steady from long-distance, and considering some of Cody Parkey's deficiencies in that area, why not? Love this pick
Seventh Round, Pick 34 (#252 overall): Matt Dayes - RB, N.C. State
On the 2nd-to-last selection of the draft, the Browns address the RB position for the first time this offseason. This position group doesn't seem to need much help, and this guy doesn't appear to be an obvious fit, but we liked him enough to draft him
The Undrafted Free Agent Pickups
There was a flurry of activity immediately following the official festivities as always happens, and the Browns were active (*none of these are official; the team will make a formal announcement at some point later this week):
- Jamal Marcus, DE - Akron
- Channing Stribling, CB - Michigan
- B.J. Bello, LB - Illinois St.
- J.D. Harmon, DB - Kentucky
- Karter Schult, DE - Northern Iowa
- Najee Murray, CB - Kent St.
- Kenneth Olugbode, LB - Colorado
- Josh Boutte, G - LSU
- Kai Nacua, CB - BYU
- Ronnie Moore, WR - BGSU
- Tim Crawley, WR - San Jose St.
- Alvin Hill, CB - Maryland
- Nick Conte, P - Virginia
- Ladell Fleming, DE - Northern Illinois
- Mitchell Shegos, WR - Notre Dame
- Freddie Tagaloa, OT - Arizona
- Donte Carey, S - Grand Valley St.
*Of course, that is of this writing and things can change. Best practice is to keep track the DBN UDFA List page to ensure you're up to date.
I'm raging excited about this draft. I loved the approach and I loved the execution. I am very pleased with the haul and look forward to spending the next few weeks and months digging into everyone we've just taken. And of course, it's never too early to begin looking at the 2018 class.
Also want to thank everyone who listened to and took part in our The DBN Network Draft Coverage all weekend long. It was our first LIVE endeavor and after it's success, won't likely to be the last.
What a fun draft season, so looking forward to seeing this 2017 squad on the field. Happy Sunday y'all, and Go Tribe!