Players I Want the Cleveland Browns to Draft

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Feb 23, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Central Florida quarterback Blake Bortles throws the ball during the 2014 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Yesterday I covered 3 players I did not want the Browns to draft in the first 2 rounds. Only fair today to give you a list of players I do want the Cleveland Browns to draft, most in the first 2 rounds but some in the later rounds. Thankfully this draft gives us many more desirable players then undesirable. I will also try to list where in the draft I want the Browns to draft them.

Blake Bortles, Teddy Bridgewater and Johnny Manziel

Probably in that order I am on board with drafting any of these 3 quarterbacks. I would be okay with Derek Carr as well, but surely not with the 4th pick. With Brian Hoyer on board I think the Browns can develop one of these 3 QBs the right way, by having them sit a year. The fan bases love of Hoyer won’t have them calling for the rookie backup quite as quickly, and the weapons that will be added around him will keep him competitive. Lets take a look at each of the 3 individually.

Bortles – I think Bortles has everything needed to develop into a starting level QB. He isn’t there yet but his size is perfect, his mobility is good and his football IQ is excellent. He needs work on his footwork mechanics but doesn’t seem fazed by blitzes, unlike Brandon Weeden and Carr, and he delivers a catch-able ball. With at least a year of coaching at the NFL level Bortles can step right in and compete in the rugged AFC North. Draft Position: Browns select Bortles at #4

Bridgewater – Bridgewater has his fair share of knocks since the season ended: Isn’t a leader, isn’t big enough, can’t throw without his gloves, had a horrible pro day, etc. Yet he was considered the #1 pick all of last season, led his team to a great season and has zero off the field issues. He may need to develop physically but his ability to move the pocket, use his eyes and his tremendous accuracy are just the type of skills that Tom Brady has. He may never be Brady but has a similar body build and arm strength. Aaron Rodgers is another comparison. Let Teddy sit for at least a year, maybe 2, and unleash him on the NFL. Draft Position: Browns select Bridgewater with the #26 pick (or a slight trade up)

Manziel – Manziel is truly the Wild Card of this draft. He doesn’t have the size of Bortles nor the accuracy of Bridgewater but he was successful against the best teams in college. He is passionate and hard working from all reports. He does not have the size, which is a concern in the physical NFL, but has shown the ability to stay healthy and take care of himself on the field. He will need to develop his pocket presence, he never had to stay in the pocket in college because he could run so well, and his discipline. Manziel could be successful in Kyle Shanahan’s play action, roll out system as well as a Zone Read system. A year of coaching, as well as physical development, as well as a conservative system his first year starting will guide his development. The worry is that he is a better throwing Tim Tebow but it is his ability to throw the ball correctly and his ability to read defenses that should minimize that concern. Draft Position: Browns trade a 3rd rounder to move up to the mid teens to take Manziel.

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Tags: Cleveland Browns NFL Draft

  • Letterman007

    I too like the players you picked, except I like Watkins at #4, but Evans I wouldn’t sneeze at! I have seen lean play dirty, punching and kneeing in or on piles ! His temperament is very questionable. Storm Johnson is interesting, as he did play with Bortles and really not much of him is known by regular fans! I saw him play a couple games on TV, and he seem to run with purpose and some power. Robinson is a good pick for a number two receiver, he has size and some speed, although I think he will take some developing. Your guess is as good as mine as to the quarterback choice of the Browns? This will be an interesting six day period and speculation will run rampant on the social network and internet!! I, myself , will be glued to the TV come Thursday night !!

  • Jarod Cook

    I have to say I like every player on this list, and agree with your assessments of them. I’m still hoping they take a skill position player at #4, and wait to see which QB’s start to drop. They have the extra picks so if the QB they like starts falling down the board, they can easily make a trade up from #26 to grab him. At #4 I prefer Evens over Watkins, and wouldn’t be against taking either OT Robinson or Matthews to hold down the right side of the OL.
    My list of QB’s goes Bortles, Bridgewaters, Mettenberger, Garopollo, Manziel, and last is Carr. Like I’ve said before wouldn’t be surprised on draft day if these QB’s start falling, especially if they make it out of the top 10. This years draft class of QB’s isn’t much better then last years class, and there’s better skilled position players in this years draft verses last years. Hopefully the Browns reap the rewards at #26 and still manage to get their guy.
    I to love Shazier and don’t think he’s going to make it out of the 1st round. He’s actual a player I’d be willing to trade up from #35 to get back into the 1st round for. He can play multiple positions and is a true 3 down player on defense. Never thought about making him play in box safety, but he does have the speed and is good in coverage, so maybe they could come up with a couple schemes to play him in that position.
    I like Robinson he’ll be a great compliment player on the offense, the only down fall with him is his speed. Personally I like Matthews more they both have about the same skill sets, but Matthews runs in the low 4.4′s and had a 19.0 YPC avg last year which is rather impressive. I to like Janis and think he’s worth taking in the 4th round. He might need a little longer to adjust to the NFL, but if developed properly like they did with Gordon he’ll be a steal at that pick. I think if they wait he’s not going to be there in the 5th, because of all the comp picks that teams have at the end of the 3rd and 4th round.
    I don’t see RB as such a need that they need to draft one this year. But you can always find value in a late round RB, and having a Shanahan in the draft room isn’t going to hurt. I’d actual be willing to take a gamble and draft Crowell in the 6th, just so I don’t lose the chance in the 7th. He did have an issue that made him leave Georgia, but since then there’s been no reported incidents, maybe he’s one of those players that actual learned from their mistakes. He can easily be the next Alfred Morris, and would be steal to get in the 6th round.

  • GeorgiaRed

    Janis is considered a 7th round pick, so picking him in the 4th-5th would be a waste. He’s also known to drop passes quite frequently. We already have a better version of that in Greg Little.