Feb 23, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Clemson Tigers wide receiver Sammy Watkins participates in a pass catching drill during the 2014 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

ESPN Browns' Reporter: "Browns Need Impact Players"


Pat McManamon provides Cleveland Browns commentary for ESPN’s NFL Nation. He does a mailbag feature as well that allows followers to tweet him questions. Pat was one of the first sports writers that this writer had the pleasure of interacting with, a phone discussion on Deer Antler Spray’s impact on Ray Lewis. McManamon left Fox Sports to join ESPN and does a fine job covering the team. His take on one of his Twitter questions is interesting:

To which McManamon responded:

@PatMcManamon The Browns need impact players, guys who can step in and make their presence felt. That could be a quarterback, but I don’t think the top three do that in this year’s draft. Not in the short-term at least. Which leaves two players in my mind who would make a larger impact than Greg Robinson. They would be Watkins at receiver and Jadeveon Clowney at linebacker. Robinson is good, but I don’t use the fourth pick for a replacement two years down the line.

It is an interesting line to draw in the sand that Robinson, an offensive tackle, is not an impact player that can make his presence felt. Instead he notes, like many Browns fans have, that Sammy Watkins or Jadeveon Clowney would have greater impact starting off.

The line of questions becomes this: Does a team need to build from the inside out? If yes, are the Browns solid enough on their line to pass over that need and start on the outside? If yes, who is available and what is their value? If no, then the team should draft a lineman.

From a counselor’s persepective I wonder if fans are so wrapped up in fantasy football and so enjoyed Josh Gordon last year that they overlook the importance of a high quality line? Related to Gordon I also wonder if fans believe any decent QB could make this team great if Gordon could put up the numbers he did with such lousy QB play? If fans believe that then adding a Watkins, even if overdrafted at #4, makes a ton of sense. Yet generally speaking QBs make WRs better, see Tom Brady and Donovan McNabb‘s receiving cores, and not the other way around.

What say you? Do you want an “impact guy” the way Pat describes them? Want the team to build from the inside? Want a QB no matter what?

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Tags: Browns Cleveland Browns

  • paulbip

    You have 4 impact players and the only one I would not take at 4 is Watkins because you can get a great WR in the secdond round.

    • Jared Mueller

      Are your 4 Clowney, Mack, Watkins and Robinson? Would you be okay with a WR at #26 instead of 2nd round?

      • paulbip

        That’s the 4. All the other picks will depend on that 4th pick. Say the pick is Robinson, Clowney or Mack. Then I would go with a QB at 26 and my pick would be Garoppolo but I know that Carr may be the choice. I would go WR in the 2nd with Moncrief. I may overpay a little for those two picks, but I want them. It looks like the top 3 QB’s may fall. Research Moncrief and let me know what you think.

        • Jared Mueller

          Did some research… He looks good. His route running can be improved but his small hands and catching skills are reported a concern. His size and speed are nice and he has some good history I would like him later in the 2nd or 3rd but wouldn’t hate if its our current 2nd.

          • paulbip

            He played with a bad QB (think any of the last 10 Browns QB’s) and had to lunge every which way to make the catch. He is better than his stats.

          • Jared Mueller

            Sounds good. Not a film guy, yet, looked through quite a few reviews from people I trust who like him in round 2 or 3 think he could be a #1 type but that he rounds off routes often and catches the ball with his body more often then with his hands. I am excited that the WR class is so deep. They take time to develop but if we can get a Moncrief type in 2nd or 3rd while adding 2 of the following: CB, OL, ILB or QB I will be very happy.

          • paulbip

            Yep. One of the three that I mentioned for an impact player then all of the above. Did I mention that the instant last years draft was over I graded it a F. I like this new management but we shall see.