The Cleveland Browns will head to the 2020 NFL Draft on April 23 with several roster holes that need filling, most notably at both offensive tackle positions.
It is never good when a team needs to fix multiple positions on the offensive line, but if you are going to need an offensive tackle, this is a good year to have that issue.
There are as many as seven offensive tackles that are in the mix to be selected in the first round - Louisville’s Mekhi Becton, Iowa’s Tristan Wirfs, Alabama’s Jedrick Wills, Georgia’s Andrew Thomas, Houston’s Josh Jones, Boise State’s Ezra Cleveland and USC’s Austin Jackson.
Related: What are the Browns options at offensive tackle in the first round?
The Browns currently hold the No. 10 overall selection, so while they will not have their pick of offensive tackles, as long as general manager Andrew Berry does not do anything daft in the coming weeks, they will be in position to select a tackle if they so desire.
With the NFL Scouting Combine now in the books, several mock drafts expect the Browns to select one of the offensive tackles - although there is not a consensus on just one of them - so let’s take a quick run through the various mocks to see just who the Browns might select.
Michael Renner at Pro Football Focus:
Jedrick Wills, Alabama: The Browns are another team in a position where it’s going to be difficult to screw this up. While drafting solely for need is a fool’s errand, need and value are going to align perfectly for a number of teams because of how top-heavy this tackle class is. Wills didn’t put up quite the freakish combine that Tristan Wirfs did, but a 5.05 40 and 34.5-inch vertical at 312 pounds is pretty darn impressive.
Vinnie Iyer at The Sporting News:
Mekhi Becton, Louisville: The Browns have an amazing set of skill players around Baker Mayfield, but their pass protection was the reason they were slow to find their explosiveness early in 2019. That will change with run-tilted and offensive-minded new coach Kevin Stefanski. Becton (6-7, 364 pounds) has gotten more attention for his strong and powerful frame, and he has shown he can be smooth in his movements. He is willing to work hard to become as good in pass protection as he is overwhelming blockers when setting the edge against the run.
Matt Miller at Bleacher Report:
Tristan Wirfs, Iowa: Finding a left tackle to keep Baker Mayfield clean and allow him time to step up in the pocket to launch the ball downfield in a passing attack the Browns hope becomes more vertical is key. Iowa’s Tristan Wirfs put on a record-setting workout at the combine and answered any questions about his athleticism or ability to play left tackle in the NFL. Wirfs immediately solves the Browns’ biggest need while also helping to further open the run game for a special group of backs in Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. New head coach Kevin Stefanski will love the movement ability of Wirfs in his run game while also keeping the franchise quarterback protected.
Trevor Sikkema at The Draft Network:
Tristan Wirfs, Iowa: There are good combines, there are great combines, there are historic combines and then there’s whatever the heck Tristan Wirfs did. At 6-foot-5-inches and 320 pounds, Wirfs ran a 4.85-second 40-yard dash and jumped 36.5 inches in the vertical and 10-feet 1-inch in the broad. All of his scores were in the 99th percentile. We’ve heard the Cleveland Browns love him, and why wouldn’t they? Wirfs’ floor seems to be No. 10.
Daniel Jeremiah at NFL Network:
Andrew Thomas, Georgia: The Browns need to address the offensive tackle position, and Thomas is a steady player.
Austin Jackson, USC: The Browns are going to be fascinating to watch in free agency, because that could shape their draft decisions. Breaking up their highly-paid receivers and improving the offensive line could put them in line to do something few expect on draft day. The new, analytic-based front office will certainly be relying on numbers more than John Dorsey did. We’ll see how the offseason goes, but Jackson may be the most impressive of the linemen.
Tristan Wirfs, Iowa: The OL is a must-address spot for the Browns with this pick, and Wirfs opened a lot of eyes at the combine last week. He has Zion Williamson-like athleticism, except he’s even bigger.
Mekhi Becton, Louisville: Cleveland could be in the market to upgrade both tackle spots. Benched midseason and arrested this offseason, left tackle Greg Robinson is a free agent. Meanwhile, right tackle Chris Hubbard graded out as PFF’s 76th-best offensive tackle (among 81 qualifiers) last season. A mountain of a man at 6’7” and 364 pounds with vines for arms (35 5/8”), the 20-year-old Becton has work to do on technique, but he has rare movement skills for a man his size.
The 2020 NFL Draft will take place April 23 through April 25 in Las Vegas.
If the Browns select an OT in the first round it should be ...
This poll is closed
Mekhi Becton - Louisville
Tristan Wirfs - Iowa
Jedrick Wills - Alabama
Andrew Thomas - Georgia
Josh Jones - Houston
Ezra Cleveland - Boise State
Austin Jackson - USC