(SportsNetwork.com) – Cleveland general manager Ray Farmer made two first-
round selections a year ago and ended up with a cornerback that barely got on
the field, Justin Gilbert, and a quarterback who just got out of rehab in
That can’t happen again.
The Browns, Philadelphia, and to a lesser extent New Orleans and San Diego,
remain the wild cards in the hunt for former Oregon quarterback Marcus
Mariota. Cleveland has two No. 1 picks again, Nos. 12 and 19, and a GM who not
only struck out badly last year, he also showed he was in over his head with
the embarrassing text-gate scandal. That means Farmer will be looking to make
a splash to save his job.
It’s probably fair to call the Browns the most dysfunctional team in the NFL
right now and Farmer is likely a little desperate and willing to take chances
with those two first-rounders. Staying put, however, and playing it safe isn’t
sexy but probably the right prescription for an organization that rarely gets
Cleveland needs help up the middle on defense and massive Washington nose
tackle Danny Shelton, who has shown really impressive movement skills for a
340-pound player, is a solid fit at No. 12.
The Browns could also use a natural right tackle with the intent of sliding
incumbent Mitchell Schwartz inside. The 6-foot-4, 305-pound LSU tackle La’el
Collins is a power-based, road-grader type who could develop into a bully on
the strong side.
If that doesn’t pan out Cleveland could use more help at receiver and a
replacement for departed tight end Jordan Cameron.
2014 Record: 7-9
Top Needs: QB, WR, TE, LB
First Three Picks: No. 12, No. 19, No. 43
Number of Selections: 10 (1, 1, 2, 3, 4, 4, 5, 6, 6, 7)
RECENT FIRST ROUND HISTORY: 2014 – Justin Gilbert (CB, Oklahoma State), Johnny
Manziel (QB, Texas A&M); 2013 – Barkevious Mingo (DE/OLB, LSU); 2012 –
Trent Richardson (RB, Alabama), Brandon Weeden (QB, Oklahoma State); 2011 –
Phil Taylor (DT, Baylor); 2010 – Joe Haden (CB, Florida); 2009 – Alex Mack (C,
California); 2008 – none; 2007 – Joe Thomas (OT, Wisconsin), Brady Quinn (QB,
Notre Dame); 2006 – Kamerion Wimbley (LB, Florida State); 2005 – Braylon
Edwards (WR, Michigan)