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2022 NFL Draft: Cleveland Browns pick RB Jerome Ford at No. 156

The Browns add a running back who can provide some depth in 2023.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: DEC 04 American Championship Game - Houston at Cincinnati Photo by Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

With the 156th pick of the 2022 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns selected RB Jerome Ford (5-11, 210 lbs) from Cincinnati. He is the team’s only fifth-round pick.

Scouting Reports

Here is a scouting report from The Athletic’s Dane Brugler, who had Ford as his 17th-ranked running back on his board, and a projected 6th round pick.

A one-year starter at Cincinnati, Ford became the Bearcats’ lead back as a junior in former offensive coordinator Mike Denbrock’s spread RPO offense. The Alabama transfer was a key reason behind Cincinnati’s run to the 2021 College Football Playoffs, leading the AAC in rushing and matching the school record for rushing touchdowns (19) in a season. Ford has the lateral footwork and body strength to keep plays alive, flashing the open-field juice to gash defenses (averaged 6.1 yards per carry in his career). However, his vision and patience lack consistency, and he needs to improve his ball security and blocking to maintain the trust of his coaches. Overall, Ford has room to improve his eyes and timing at the line of scrimmage to be more of a creator, but he has an effective blend of size, strength and speed with upside catching the football. He can provide a punch to an NFL team’s depth chart.

PFF graded Ford well, but their knock on him is that he’s not ready to carry a huge workload. Fortunately for a team like Cleveland, that is not a problem whatsoever.

How He Fits the Browns

Running back isn’t a position of need for Cleveland this year. They already have a great duo in Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt, and D’Ernest Johnson has been a solid third back too. Demetric Felton is also on the roster. However, this could be a forward-thinking pick. While Chubb is here long-term, 2022 is the final year that Hunt and Johnson are under contract. Both of those guys probably won’t be re-signed for 2023, so Ford can be groomed as one of their replacements.

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What do you think, Browns fans?


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