It is an annual tradition that most in the comment section say they don’t like but, at most places, is one of the highest read pieces every year: NEXT YEAR’S MOCK DRAFT.
The purpose is just to get people excited about what will have in just under a year as well as sprinkle in some names to start to get to know. For fans of the Cleveland Browns, the NFL draft is no longer the team’s Super Bowl but it is still very important.
The hard thing about mock drafts a year early is we have no clue what players might break out, get hurt or have horrible seasons. The easier thing about mock drafts a year early is we have some idea of contract situations at this moment.
Trying to balance both, we bring you our lone Browns mock draft of 2024 written in the year of 2023 with the help of Pro Fooball Network:
TE Jaheim Bell, Florida State transfer from South Carolina
Last year, Bell was so versatile (and needed) that he ran the ball more than he caught it. Bell had 73 rush attempts to 25 receptions. He compiled a total of 492 yards and five touchdowns for the Gamecocks. After transfering to FSU this offseason, Bell could see his stock rise quite a bit.
DT Tyleik Williams, Ohio State
Williams had fave sacks as a freshman but dropped down to just one last year. The Buckeyes are expecting a bounce back season from Williams. Cleveland added a ton of players to the middle of their line but can never have enough. Trysten Hill and Maurice Hurst are on one year contracts as well.
RB Blake Watson, Memphis
One of the biggest surprises this year was the team not drafting a running back. Watson fills that role here as the former Ole Dominion back who averaged 5.8 yards per carry, joins Memphis for the 2023 season.
LB Danny Stutsman, Oklahoma
Similarly, the linebacker position didn’t get addressed until undrafted free agency. We also know how much GM Andrew Berry loves scouting Oklahoma players so Stutsman checked two boxes for us her with the team’s second fifth round pick. The Browns get the additional pick as the compensation for Baker Mayfield from the Carolina Panthers.
S Jalen Catalon, Texas
The final of our “they didn’t select one this year” picks, Catalon played in just one game last year for Arkansas but will try to make his impact with the Longhorns this year. He had five interceptions combined between 2021 and 2022 and is hoping to jump start his career with the move south.
CB DeShawn Gaddie, Ole Miss
With an extra pick in this round due to the trade with the Baltimore Ravens, Berry gets his yearly cornerback in Gaddie. Transfering from small school North Texas to Ole Miss will give the 6’1” corner a chance to show he can compete at a higher level before entering the NFL draft.
DE Rondell Bothroyd, Oklahoma
Where to go with a final pick in a mock draft a year in advance? How about a pass rusher? Like many players on this list and in the upcoming draft (and something we will have to get used to more and more), Bothroyd transferred from Wake Forest after having 24.5 tackles for loss and 13 sacks combined the last two seasons.
Now that that is out of the way, we get ready for rookie minicamp, offseason activities and the Cleveland Browns 2023 NFL season!