BEREA (Ohio) — For the first and most recent time in what seems like forever, theFigures for the were relatively consistent .
The Browns, twice drafted No. 1 overall in the past five years, don’t have a first-round pick heading into Thursday, having traded away their 2022, 2023 and 2024 first-round selections to acquire quarterbackThe following are the .
But that doesn’t mean Cleveland won’t have opportunities to improve its already talented roster this weekend. Here’s what to watch for in what should be a much different type of a draft for Browns fans compared to the recent past.
Cleveland could trade in the first round
In the draft, anything is possible. But by general manager Andrew Berry’s own admission last week, the odds are against it.
“I would never rule out anything,” said Berry when asked about the possibility of moving back into the first round. “I would say just candidly, I think it’s unlikely. But I don’t want to say anything in absolutes because you just never know how situations arise. … We have to be flexible with the situation.”
The Browns are flexible and will keep an eye out for potential opportunities. But given Cleveland’s depleted draft capital due to the Watson trade, it’s hard to see the Browns packaging together even more picks just to move up.
Who will the Browns choose to target at No. 44 overall?
ESPN NFL draft insider Mel Kiper Jr.UConn defensive tackle with their first pick, noting that Jones is a “nose tackle who can swallow up double-teams and free up the linebackers behind him.”
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Berry recently stated that defensive tackle is an important position for the Browns.“to step up into increased roles” up front. Even though Cleveland could be able to take a defensive lineman on Day 2, it is likely that they will trade or free-agent defensive tackle for a wide receiver. Even after the trade, their greatest need offensively is at the receiver position. .
Penn State’s, Western Michigan’s , North Dakota State’s , Alabama’s and Cincinnati’s Browns could consider him as a wide receiver in the second round. Any one of them could play a major role as receiver alongside Cooper. .
“Honestly, it’s best player possible,” Berry said when asked what type of receiver Cleveland could target in the draft. “Some guys will produce because they’re great route runners, they can separate and have great hands. Some guys can create, because they are capable of producing after the catch. Vertical threats are some guys. … [We have] no particular preference as long as they can create an impact.”
Cleveland could draft a kicker.
Evidently, the Browns saw the benefits of drafting a kicker for themWho was the one who took? In the fifth round of last year's playoffs. McPherson, a rookie, converted many key kicks for the Bengals in the playoffs during their surprise run to the Super Bowl.
The Browns continue to struggle with kicker since selectionIn the fifth round, 2019 draft. Seibert only lasted for a season in Cleveland. The Browns have been scrambling since then.
The draft seems to offer several compelling options at kicker, notably LSU’sand Texas’ . The Browns will have a limited number of draft picks in the future. If the team believes that such a kicker exists, however, it would be worth the Browns making a decision to select them in the middle rounds. Cleveland should seriously consider this.
Mayfield is still on the Browns' roster, more than a month after Watson was traded to Cleveland. The Browns may have the chance to trade Mayfield this week during draft.
The team to keep an eye on appears to be. The sixth pick could be used to trade for a quarterback. That would allow Carolina to make a Mayfield deal. The draft results at quarterback could also be an indicator that other teams are interested in Mayfield trades.
If Mayfield is not traded around the draft, he could remain on Cleveland’s books for the foreseeable future as the Browns wait for a quarterback injury elsewhere — or until Cleveland decides to eat enough of his $19 million salary to make a trade palatable for another team.