We have finally hit NFL draft week. Between now and Thursday (Friday for the Cleveland Browns), we will hear a lot of murmurs about what teams think, what could happen, what should happen and what teams are planning to do what in this year’s NFL draft.
That ‘What ifs’ are some of the best parts of the professional sports experience. That is especially true during offseasons when nothing can actually happen on the field.
Since NFL free agency started winding down, we started to bring you weekly Browns mock drafts. Now that we have hit draft week, that will ramp up to daily mock drafts with a few key differences in those mocks:
- Monday - What Jared would do
- Tuesday - An all-defense mock draft
- Wednesday - A trade-down version
- Thursday - A realistic/expectation of what Cleveland could do
- Friday - A day 2 mock draft
- Saturday - A day 3 Browns mock draft
For those of you that love mock draft season, you will be excited. For those who do not, you will be making comments here or on social media.
Today’s mock draft is the version of what I would do if I was in GM Andrew Berry’s shoes. Going into it, I had an idea of who I wanted to trade up for if he fell to a pick that would work using the Rich Hill trade chart (as described in this article).
For this mock draft, ESPN’s new simulator was used because it is free, allows trades and I personally know two of the folks putting together the rankings (Matt Miller, Jordan Reid) so I trust it.
Browns trade picks 74, 111 & 140 to the Chicago Bears for pick 53
According to the Hill trade chart, the Browns are giving up 108 points and receiving 106 (the difference of a seventh-round pick extra for the Bears).
Browns Mock Draft
LB Jack Campbell, Iowa Hawkeyes
Campbell should be a first-round selection. His talent is overwhelming and it is shocking that very few in the media see him as a first-round pick. The limited value of linebackers plays a huge role here. As Cleveland’s GM, I’ll jump at turning extra fourth and fifth-round picks over for a chance to get this kind of talent:
The perfect trade up candidate for the #Browns is Iowa LB Jack Campbell:— Tyler Johnson (@T_johnson_TJ) April 24, 2023
- 6’5” 249lbs
- 125 tackles
- 59 solo tackles
- 2 interceptions
- 91.9 overall grade
- 92.9 coverage grade
- 87.0 run defense grade
- 8.9% missed tackle rate
- 65.3 pass rush grade
You have your starting… pic.twitter.com/dc5232YXGz
DT Siaki Ika, Baylor Bears
To be honest, this was the toughest selection throughout the draft. Ika is a boom-or-bust player for me but there were very limited other options that I liked at this point in the draft, especially at defensive end and wide receiver. With that in mind, Ika can learn from Dalvin Tomlinson while also helping the veteran by taking on extra blockers. Late in the third, there is good value there especially if he can be more of a boom than a bust.
CB TreVius Hodges-Tomlinson, TCU Horned Frogs
Anyone reading work from me will know that I love Kei’Trell Clark as the team’s slot corner but Hodges-Tomlinson is a better prospect that shouldn’t have been available here. Despite being 5’9”, THT is a stud defender and would upgrade the team’s coverage immediately.
WR Michael Wilson, Stanford Cardinal
A player who has slipped under the radar, Wilson is a quality prospect that can play inside and out. He also has experience as a punt returner. More of a complete receiver than a speed guy or quick guy, Wilson rounds out the receiver room pretty well.
RB Deuce Vaughn, Kansas State Wildcats
We weren’t making it out of this mock draft without one of my guys on the list. “Pocket Hulk” is tiny but a great route runner, strong in pass protection and a solid runner. His ability to hide behind his linemen and shoot out of a hole is impressive and worth a flyer here in the sixth.
DE Mike Morris, Michigan Wolverines
The Browns need more defensive ends and Morris was productive in college. Morris is versatile with a long 6’6” frame that will help him grow into a role in the NFL.
The first Browns mock draft of NFL draft week goes a little all over the place but the defense is clearly better now and for the future while the offense gets a couple of guys that should be helpful and productive for their rookie contracts, at a minimum.
What do you think about the trade? Which picks did you love, hate?