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The "build the team first" approach appears to have fallen under the radar

Apr 28, 2015 -- 7:58am

By Jerod Cherry | ESPNCleveland.com

 

Photo/Getty

As the draft draws nearer every day, I hear the following from Browns fans: "We need to find our franchise quarterback in this upcoming draft!"

Or, "The Browns will not win until we have a franchise quarterback!" 

I agree that having a solid player at the most important position in football is going to increase the likelihood that the Browns are going to win more than they lose. However, it appears to me that way too many Browns fans have been stricken by the "we need our franchise quarterback now" syndrome.

Consequently, the sound method of “build the team first” approach to football team building appears to have fallen under the radar and by the wayside among plenty of Browns fans. My hope in this week's Under the Radar blog is to provide a remedy and dispel the "we need a franchise QB now" syndrome.

Before I move forward with my comments, concerns, and criticism, I understand that not having a successful franchise quarterback since Bernie Kosar last played in a Browns uniform is cause for the way in which a large number of Browns fans feel regarding the need to have a "franchise quarterback."

But before you completely buy into the notion that the savior and answer to the Browns' problems is to first find a franchise quarterback in the draft, there are several things I would like you to consider.

First, what is harder to find in the NFL draft, a franchise QB or the position players needed to make him a franchise quarterback? I would argue that locating a franchise quarterback, then selecting him in the draft, and counting on him to have short and long term success is a much tougher task and harder road to travel.

I strongly believe a support system has to come before a football team can have sustainable success and declare that on their roster they have the eventual Russell Wilson and or Tom Brady.  You're simply asking too much from an inexperienced quarterback, and in some cases experienced quarterback, to have the fate of the franchise rest mainly on their shoulders. 

In regards to a rookie QB, are you really going to ask a person who is unfamiliar with the league to first lead himself and then lead others while doing it on the fly? That is what I call setting someone up for failure.

Thus, the best way to build your team even if there are John Elway, Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck prospects available in the draft is to first build a stout defense, beef up your offensive line, and have an excellent kicking game. By building a team to support the QB you have a larger talent pool to choose from. This increases your margin for error because you’re not banking on one player to save the day, game, season, and franchise.

A strong defense minimizes the need for a quarterback to score a bunch of points.  A strong defense can also cover up poor QB play. This is achieved because a strong defense most of the time will not allow three-and-out situations and turnovers to lead to a score.

Having a beefed up offensive line is just as important.

If a quarterback is not comfortable in the pocket, I guarantee he will struggle. Also if a quarterback does not trust the protection and those protecting him, he will play scared.

When quarterbacks play scared and worry about getting hit they throw tentatively. This results in bad mechanics, such as throwing off your back foot or not stepping into a throw. Poorly thrown balls can easily result in an INT or much worse a pick six.

Great protection lessens the fear and helps a QB develop and become all he can be.

The kicking game is viewed by many as not that important but those "in the know" realize a strong kicking game is highly important to helping a quarterback succeed. Positive field position and the ability to score points are assets needed to take the pressure off the quarterback.

After reading this you may think that this approach is too much babying and coddling and not enough sink or swim.  Well, you're right to a degree.

As you have observed with the good to great quarterbacks at some point the training wheels are taken off and the quarterback has to become the man. Yet he can never do it alone and he will always be dependent on those around him for his success.

I will concede that in order to become a franchise QB ultimately a QB has to play in a way in which he is putting those around him in a position to succeed more often than not.  Thus you do need offensive skill position players with talent. However, they don't have to be all-pro in order for you to succeed.

That same trait is what makes quarterbacks like Russell Wilson and Tom Brady great.

In closing, a quarterback with the ability to put others in a position to succeed is what Browns fans are craving for. I get it. But let me forewarn you that if you expect a player to just fall out of the sky and display franchise quarterback traits without the other parts needed that I just discussed, you are truly under a spell in which there is no cure.

 

####

 

 

Mock Draft Thursday: The Browns need more targets

Apr 23, 2015 -- 7:52am

By Tony Grossi | ESPNCleveland.com

 

Photo/AP

As part of ESPN Cleveland’s Path to the Draft, and in preparation for Tony Grossi’s Mock Draft every Friday, here are the best and the worst of what the so-called “experts” are predicting the Browns to do on Thursday April 30th along with analysis of the players they think the Browns will draft.

TODD MCSHAY - ESPN

-       Posted April 22nd

#12 – Louisville WR DeVante Parker

“The Browns really need a receiver after not taking one in last year's draft and with Josh Gordon's NFL future in doubt. Parker is a good value at this spot; he's a big target who can threaten defenses vertically with his speed and come down with contested catches. The Browns' biggest need is at quarterback, but they won't be able to draft one in the first round in this scenario. They've been mentioned as a team that could move up to draft Marcus Mariota, but I don't think they're as likely to do so as some of the other teams I've mentioned so far.”

#19 – Texas DT Malcom Brown

“The Browns lost both Jabaal Sheard and Ahtyba Rubin in free agency, and Phil Taylor is recovering from knee surgery and entering the final year of his contract, so adding a versatile player like Brown to their defensive front would be a wise move. He is just average as a pass-rusher but is excellent versus the run, and he showed the ability to play multiple roles in multiple defensive schemes while at Texas. He'll help shore up the Browns' run defense, after they landed a big-play wide receiver in DeVante Parker with the No. 12 pick.”

MARIOTA WATCH: McShay has Mariota going number two to the Tennessee Titans.

“This is a tough pick to make. If the Titans don't receive a trade offer they like at this spot, I feel like they're more likely to take a player other than Mariota (USC's Leonard Williams would be a perfect fit in Ray Horton's hybrid 3-4/4-3 defensive scheme). But I'll slot Mariota here in accordance with the Mel Kiper "no trades" mock draft rule, with the idea that I believe a team will move up to take him at No. 2. It makes sense for the Chargers to trade Philip Rivers for the second pick if they don't think they can retain Rivers beyond this year, especially given Rivers' experience with Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt. I consider the Jets another possibility, and I'm not yet ready to rule out a move up by the Eagles to take him. Chip Kelly thinks really highly of Mariota, he's a perfect fit for his system and the trio of Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow is far from a sure thing from a durability and on-field performance standpoint. I also think the Rams are a long-shot candidate to move up for Mariota.”

 

DOUG FARRAR – SI.com

-       Posted April 22nd

#12 – Louisville WR DeVante Parker

“So ... how's that quarterback situation going, Cleveland? So well that the franchise signed veteran journeyman Josh McCown to a three-year, $14 million deal in the off-season, and they're just hoping that Johnny Manziel can someday resemble a functional player at the NFL level. And with Josh Gordon out of the picture in perpetuity (he can't apply for NFL reinstatement until after the 2015 season) more targets are needed for this particular mess. The 6’3”, 209-pound Parker is ranked by many as the third receiver in this class behind Amari Cooper and Kevin White, based on his prolific production (156 catches for 2,775 yards and 33 touchdowns during his time with the Cardinals, with 43 catches for 855 yards and five touchdowns in just seven games last season) and total skill set, and he projects very well as a No. 1 receiver. He'd have to wait a while for a No. 1 quarterback if the Browns take him, but this passing offense has to start somewhere.”

#19 – Texas DT Malcom Brown

“The Browns have had two first-round picks in two different drafts since 2012—safe to say, things haven't gone so well between Brandon Weeden, Trent Richardson, Johnny Manziel and Justin Gilbert. The aforementioned DeVante Parker pick could start to turn that around, and Brown might be a great addition to a defensive line that's already pretty strong with Phil Taylor and Randy Starks on the inside. But Starks is 31 and Taylor is in the last year of his contract. Brown would fit in Mike Pettine's defense because he can penetrate and stop the run from one- and two-gap positions, giving the Browns some serious versatility.”

MARIOTA WATCH: Farrar has the Titans and Chargers making a trade with the Chargers moving up to number two to snag Mariota.

 

LANCE ZIERLEIN – NFL.com

-       Posted April 22nd

#12 – Louisville WR DeVante Parker

“Cleveland Browns, meet your new top dawg at wide receiver. He makes big plays and you will love the way he competes for the ball.”

#19 – Florida State DT Eddie Goldman

“This feels too rich for a run-stuffer who is unlikely to play on passing downs, but his physicality against the run cannot be undersold.”

MARIOTA WATCH: Zierlein has Mariota going number two to Tennessee although he’s in agreement with many other experts saying that he wouldn’t be surprised if another team is picking at number two come draft night.

 

DANIEL JEREMIAH – NFL.com

-       Posted April 20th

#12 – Louisville WR DeVante Parker

            “Parker would give the Browns a true No. 1 wideout.”

#19 – Florida State DT Eddie Goldman

“Goldman is a dominant run defender and would be a nice fit in Mike Pettine's scheme.”

MARIOTA WATCH: Jeremiah has Marcus Mariota going number two to the Titans.

 

PETE PRISCO – CBSSports.com

-       Posted April 21st

#12 – Washington NT Danny Shelton

“Cleveland needs a power player in the middle of the defense. Shelton is that and he might be able to push the pocket.”

#19 – Miami (FL) WR Phillip Dorsett

“Has blazing speed and the Browns have a real need at his position. Dorsett is far more than just a speed guy. He is a polished receiver.”

MARIOTA WATCH: Prisco has Mariota going to the New York Jets at pick number six.

 

DANE BRUGLER – CBSSports.com

-       Posted April 20th

#12 – Louisville WR DeVante Parker

“The Browns have obvious needs in the front seven on defense, but with Parker still available in this scenario, will they pass on a player like Danny Shelton for a potential No. 1 receiver? Yes.”

#19 – LSU OT La’el Collins

“The Browns need to add depth on the offensive line and Collins would give the team a long-term option at right tackle to replace Mitchell Schwartz, who is likely playing his final season in Cleveland this year.”

MARIOTA WATCH: Brugler has Mariota going to the Titans at pick number two.

 

Drum roll please, here’s this week’s mock of the week. An interesting angle from Will Brinson that NO ONE has really talked about.

WILL BRINSON – CBSSports.com

-       Posted April 22nd

“The idea persists or persisted for a while anyway -- that Chip Kelly, if he wants to get Marcus Mariota, has to make one swift, bold, all-in move up the draft board in order to acquire his old quarterback. This makes sense logically because it properly values Mariota as a top-five pick in a quarterback league with potential suitors lurking up and down the draft board.

It ignores, however, the possibility of Kelly making TWO trades in order to get all the way up to No. 2 overall. He can't convince the Titans to drop to 20, not without giving up a ridiculous ransom. But he could probably convince them to drop down 10 spots or so in the draft and all he needs is a third team involved who will deal with him.

That third team's been sitting there for weeks, ever since the Cleveland Browns offered Kelly a first-round pick for his newly acquired quarterback Sam Bradford.

So let's bring that deal back and have the Browns give the Eagles a first-round pick (No. 12) in exchange for Sam Bradford (Philly can throw in a third-round pick to expedite the deal maybe?). The Browns own No. 19 in this draft and have their new quarterback. The Eagles own No. 12, which Kelly promptly packages with No. 20 overall and sends to the Titans in exchange to the rights for No. 2.”

#2 (Philadelphia) – Oregon QB Marcus Mariota

#12 (Tennessee) – Missouri DE Shane Ray

#19 (Cleveland) – LSU OT La’el Collins

“With Sam Bradford in tow the Browns need to improve on an already decent offensive line. Collins gives them someone who can move Mitchell Schwartz to guard or play inside himself if necessary, but also a physical presence in the run game.”

#20 (Cleveland) – Texas DT Malcom Brown

“A poor man's Leonard Williams for the Titans here (very poor?!?) as they move down, grab another defensive player and start to resemble a team who can stop people from scoring.”

 

####

Tony Grossi covers the Browns for ESPN 850 WKNR, ESPN 1540 KNR2 and www.espncleveland.com.

He has covered the Browns with distinction since 1984 and is one of 46 voters for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Use the hashtag #HeyTony on Twitter or email your “Hey Tony” questions to tgrossi@goodkarmabrands.com

Follow Tony on Twitter @tonygrossi

 

 

 

Statement from Browns QB Johnny Manziel

Apr 17, 2015 -- 9:59am

By ESPN Cleveland Staff | ESPNCleveland.com

 

Photo/AP

Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel has released his first official statement since leaving rehab.

Statement from Browns QB Johnny Manziel

“I would like to thank my family, friends, the Browns organization, my teammates and Browns fans everywhere for your patience, understanding and support during my stay at Caron. The doctors and staff have been amazing and what I’ve learned in the last couple of months has been tremendous. I owe private apologies to a lot of people that I disappointed but a very public one to the Browns organization and the fans that I let down. I take full responsibility for my actions and it’s my intention to work very hard to regain everyone’s trust and respect. I understand that will take time and will only happen through what I do and not what I say. I also understand there’s a lot of curiosity about this but anyone who has a friend or family member that’s been through things like this knows it’s an ongoing process. I’m going to continue to ask folks to try to respect my privacy as I determine to what degree I am comfortable talking about a subject which I consider very personal. Most of you have been considerate about that and I thank you for it. I look forward to seeing my teammates next week and focusing on football and my desire to be the best possible player, teammate, and man that I can be.”

 

 

 

Mock Draft Thursday: The Browns get their quarterback of the future

Apr 16, 2015 -- 6:40am

By Jason Gibbs | ESPNCleveland.com

 

Photo/ESPN

As part of ESPN Cleveland’s Path to the Draft, and in preparation for Tony Grossi’s Mock Draft every Friday, here are the best and the worst of what the so-called “experts” are predicting the Browns to do on Thursday April 30th along with analysis of the players they think the Browns will draft.

CHARLES DAVIS – NFL.com

-       Posted April 15th

#12 – Central Florida WR Breshad Perriman

“The biggest riser in mock drafts everywhere, the blazingly fast Perriman replaces Pro Bowler Josh Gordon and will pair with free-agent pickup Dwayne Bowe for a set of full-sized WRs.”

#19 – Washington NT Danny Shelton

“Hard to believe that the "The Big Rumbler" drops this far on draft night, but the Browns and their fans would rejoice. Two first-round picks for the second year in a row for Cleveland.”

MARIOTA WATCH: Davis has Marcus Mariota going number two to the Tennessee Titans.

CHARLIE CASSERLY – NFL.com

-       Posted April 13th

Casserly has the Browns trading with the Washington Redskins in this mock, moving up to number five to select:

#5 – Oregon QB Marcus Mariota

“In this projected trade, Washington gets picks, and the Browns get their quarterback of the future.”

#19 – Texas DT Malcom Brown

“Upgrading the run defense is a priority for the Browns.”

CHRIS BURKE – Sports Illustrated

-       Posted April 14th

#12 – Washington NT Danny Shelton

“Because they A.) Have two first-round picks, and B.) Are the Browns, count Cleveland as a candidate to do just about anything in Round 1. One of the top-three WRs or top-two QBs tumbling could change the plan, but there is no question this team has to put up more resistance in the trenches.​”

#19 – Stanford OT Andrus Peat

“Cleveland could bump Mitchell Schwartz for Peat immediately, with Peat ticketed for Joe Thomas's LT job down the line. The question is: Would the Browns be patient enough to pass on playmakers twice in Round 1?​”

MARIOTA WATCH: Burke has Marcus Mariota going number six to the New York Jets.

DANE BRUGLER – CBSSports.com

-       Posted April 12th

#12 – Washington NT Danny Shelton

“Cleveland needs to revamp the front seven in order to stop the run and a good place to start is at nose tackle. Shelton won't have the same type of production in the NFL as he did at Washington, but he should be a long-term anchor for a three-man front.”

#19 – LSU OT La’el Collins

“The Browns need to add depth on the offensive line and Collins would give the team a long-term option at right tackle to replace Mitchell Schwartz, who is likely playing his final season in Cleveland this year.”

MARIOTA WATCH: Brugler has Marcus Mariota going number six to the New York Jets.

MIKE FLORIO & STAFF – Pro Football Talk

-       Posted April 12th

#12 – Alabama S Landon Collins

#19 – Florida State OL Cameron Erving

MARIOTA WATCH: Florio and his PFT consultants have Mariota going to the New York Jets at pick number six.

CHRIS TRAPASSO – CBSSports.com

-       Posted April 14th

Another big trade involving the Browns. This time Cleveland and Washington get together with the Browns giving up their 12th pick, 43rd pick (2nd round) and a fifth rounder to snag:

#5 – Oregon QB Marcus Mariota

“Apparently close to "moving on" from Johnny Manziel, the Browns, loaded with draft capital, make an aggressive move to get Mariota, who's more pro-ready than most believe. The Redskins' new brain trust is thrilled with trading back and on the draft trade value chart gives this swap a thumbs up.”

#19 – Minnesota TE Maxx Williams

“After seeing Jordan Cameronbolt to Miami and missing out on Charles Clay, the Browns have a blatant hole at tight end. To some, this is "too early" for Williams, but Cleveland likes his body control, strong hands, yards-after-the-catch ability and willingness as a blocker. And he's young.”

Now for this week’s mock of the week. This is by far one of the most interesting mock drafts I’ve seen. If the number of trades that Schrager predicted happen this will be one of the craziest draft nights in recent memory. And that’s saying something after what we went through last year. Schrager has the Browns involved in a draft night trade with the Jets for pick number six but not for who you think.

PETER SCHRAGER – Fox Sports

-       Posted April 13th

#12 – Alabama WR Amari Cooper

“Another trade? Why not? I know the Browns would love to get a top wideout and with two picks in the top 20, they've got some real juice come April 30. If this draft shakes out this way, I'd have to think Cleveland would be willing to make a big move up. This year's 12th pick and next year's first-rounder should be enough to get the Jets to trade back.”

#19 – Stanford OT Andrus Peat

“Peat's father, Todd, was a starting offensive lineman for the Phoenix Cardinals in the 1990s, and this younger version, though not quite a finished product, showed real flashes at Stanford. He's 6-foot-7, 314 pounds, and could compete for the starting right tackle job in Cleveland next year.”

MARIOTA WATCH: Schrager has Marcus Mariota going number four to the St. Louis Rams in a draft day trade. Here’s what he says:

“Here's where things get fun in my mock draft. I think there's a real possibility Washington takes Mariota at 5 or the Jets pull the trigger at 6. I believe the Rams and Browns are also interested. St. Louis has loaded up on pieces on both the offensive and defensive lines for years; the Rams make a big splash here and trade their 2015 (10th overall) and 2016 first-round picks for Oakland's fourth overall selection. With Sam Bradford now in Philadelphia, the Rams are looking for a new face of their franchise and the guy who'll lead them to Los Angeles if there's a move in the works (there is). With Nick Foles there on a third-round pick contract, they have the luxury of letting Mariota sit for a bit, learn Frank Cignetti's and Chris Weinke's offense, and still be competitive in 2015. Big swing here for Les Snead and Jeff Fisher. I like it.”

 

 

 

Under the Radar: Jean Sifrin

Apr 13, 2015 -- 2:40pm

By Jerod Cherry  | ESPNCleveland.com

 

Photo/UMass

A potential 27-year-old NFL rookie is a headline in and of itself and should not be regarded as a player under the radar. 

Even though it has been nearly 20 years since the Minutemen of John Calipari and Marcus Camby had their run to the Final four in 1996, basketball is what the University of Massachusetts is still mostly known for.  So I am willing to bet most people never heard of UMass tight end Jean Sifrin.

Sifrin first gained my attention when I watched him make a spectacular catch that was Odel- Beckham Jr.-worthy.  If you don't believe me go on the Internet and type into your search engine “UMass TE catch” and see for yourself the exceptional catch! It should also be noted that Sifrin made this play with just one week of practice to prepare for the game.

Now one play does not and should not make a player NFL-caliber and worthy.  Yet when you look at Sifrin's measurements of 6-7 and 250 pounds, and the athletic ability shown on film, I think Sifrin can make the jump to the next level with just one season of Division I FBS experience under his belt.

Sifrin's backstory has the makings of a Hollywood movie.  At 27, it's fair to surmise that Jean has seen a lot of ups and downs. Unlike Michael Oher, on which the movie Blind Side was based, Sifrin’s hardships were a combination of poor decision-making on his part as a teenager and young adult, as well as being a victim of his circumstances. To his credit, Sifrin is still in the process of overcoming those decisions and circumstances.

As far as football is concerned, Sifrin is an NFL receiving tight end prototype.

Sifrin possesses the size, hands, speed, and athletic ability. All these attributes suggest that Sifrin is a “can't miss” prospect.  However, before we crown Sifrin as the next Shannon Sharpe, there are some concerns.

The biggest knock against Sifrin is his age -- 27.  Most players enter their prime at 27. Sifrin’s career will just be getting started.  Hence, having a long-term career is very unlikely. Yet, if he can produce for four to five years, he can have a short but sweet career. 

Sifrin's inexperience also can be perceived as a red flag.

With the departure of Jordan Cameron to Miami, the Browns are certainly in search of, and in need of, a pass receiving tight end.  When Cameron, the former college basketball player started his NFL career, he was a project.  Sifrin does not have that luxury. Due to his age, he will have to hit the ground literally running and catching. 

Because Sifrin has the physical measurements, maturity, and hunger on his side, the Browns should bring this under the radar player to town.

 

 

 

Mock Draft Thursday

Apr 09, 2015 -- 6:39am

By Jason Gibbs | ESPNCleveland.com

 

Photo/ESPN

As part of ESPN Cleveland’s Path to the Draft, and in preparation for Tony Grossi’s Mock Draft every Friday, here are the best and the worst of what the so-called “experts” are predicting the Browns to do on Thursday April 30th along with analysis of the players they think the Browns will draft.

BRIAN BALDINGER – NFL.com

-       Posted April 6th

#12 – LSU OT La’el Collins

“Mike Pettine knows he needs to get better in the trenches. Collins is a powerful run blocker who can play right tackle or offensive guard. Nothing fancy here, just a solid player.”

#19 – Texas DT Malcom Brown

“The Browns fight the urge to take Marcus Mariota here, but get a much-needed nose tackle to anchor their porous defensive front from 2014.”

NOTE…Baldinger has the Eagles taking Oregon QB Marcus Mariota at number 20 directly after the Browns pick at 19.

 

LANCE ZIERLEIN – NFL.com

-       Posted April 8th

#12 – Oregon QB Marcus Mariota

“Will Mariota last this long? Maybe, maybe not, but I'm not going to project any trade-ups for him at this point. It's hard to believe the Browns are sold on Johnny Manziel.”

#19 – Arizona St. WR Jaelen Strong

“Some teams are in love with Strong's ability to overmatch cornerbacks and make contested catches. This might be a little high for him, but it wouldn't shock me.”

 

RON CLEMENTS – Sporting News and Perform Media

-       Posted April 6th

#12 – Louisville WR DeVante Parker

“Parker has probably the strongest hands of any receiver in this year’s draft class. He’s big at 6-3, 209 and the Browns made Parker one of their top-30 visits. He came back from a foot injury last year to catch 43 passes for 855 yards and six touchdowns in six games. He finished his Louisville career as the school leader with 33 touchdowns and 10 100-yard games.” 

#19 – Texas DT Malcom Brown

“Not to be confused with Texas running back Malcolm Brown, the 6-2, 319-pound defensive tackle was a finalist for both the Bronco Nagurski and Outland trophies. He was the first Texas defensive tackle to lead the Longhorns in both tackles for loss (13) and sacks (6.5) since 1984.”

 

DANE BRUGLER – CBSSports.com

-       Posted April 5th

#12 – Washington NT Danny Shelton

“Cleveland needs to revamp the front seven in order to stop the run and a good place to start is at nose tackle. Shelton won't have the same type of production in the NFL as he did at Washington, but he should be a long-term anchor for a three-man front.”

#19 – LSU OT La’el Collins

“The Browns need to add depth on the offensive line and Collins would give the team a long-term option at right tackle to replace Mitchell Schwartz, who is likely playing his final season in Cleveland this year.”

 

PETER KING – MMQB

-       Posted April 1st

#12 – Florida OT/OG D.J. Humphries

“It’s a meat-and-potatoes pick for GM Ray Farmer, taking the second-best tackle prospect on many boards.”

#19 – Washington NT Danny Shelton

“He’s getting dinged by a few scouts for his inconsistency recently, and he’s likely just a two-down player. But at his peak, he could be a Vince Wilfork, and the Browns need some defensive beef.”

 

NFLDraftGeek.com

-       Posted April 3rd

#12 – TRADE. The Browns move up…TO NUMBER FIVE, trading with the Washington Redskins (giving up #12 and #19) to select Oregon QB Marcus Mariota.

“I'm not saying this is necessarily what the Browns will do, even though there have been legitimate reports suggesting it might, but it's definitely what they should do! You can throw out all the clichés you want about building through the draft and conserving draft picks, but in the end we all know the NFL is a Quarterbacks league; if you don't have a quarterback you aren't going win games, plain and simple. And based on what we saw from Johnny Manziel and Josh McCown last year I don't know how many games the Browns can even expect to be competitive in. I know Browns fans won't like our projected trade, but basically it comes down to Cleveland's willingness to give up the 19th pick. Would you be willing to give up a guy like Jaelen Strong or Jordan Phillips for Marcus Mariota? You know my answer!”

 

And to wrap up the week, wait until you get a load of this mock. I’ll be honest I’d be pretty fired up if this is how day one went.

WILL BRINSON – CBSSports.com

-       Posted April 3rd

The Cleveland Browns trade with the Philadelphia Eagles, swapping first round picks (we can only assume more as well but this is all the mock had in it). Here’s how both teams end up:

#12 (Philly) – Oregon DT Arik Armstead

“It would be pretty hysterical if Chip Kelly made the bold move to trade up in the first round of the draft to grab one of his former players and that player wasn't Mariota. Philly and Cleveland talked trade earlier in the year with respect to Sam Bradford. This deal wouldn't include any quarterback swapping or a first-round pick.”

#19 (Cleveland) – Kentucky OLB Alvin “Bud” Dupree

“The hype has died down from Dupree's ridiculous performance at the combine, but he's still an insanely athletic pass rusher with tons of upside who could fit the bill for the Browns.”

#20 (Cleveland) – Oklahoma WR Dorial Beckham-Green

“The Browns lost hyper-talented, hyper-troubled wideout Josh Gordon for all of 2015 so why not replace him with someone similar?”

 

 

 

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