Shawn’s Mock Draft 6.0


This is my 6th Mock Draft, and the 2nd in which I’ve taken Sammy Watkins at 4. I still think he’s the best player on the board at that point, and I would like to see the Browns draft him. I changed things up quite a bit after that, so enjoy!

With the Fourth Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select WR Sammy Watkins, Clemson.

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Good teams do the right thing in the first round. They take the talent, the best available. In my opinion, the best player available at 4 was Sammy Watkins. We’ve written a lot about Watkins here at DPN, so I’m not going to beat it to death. He’s a special talent. Special talents don’t come around often. Coupled with Josh Gordon, as well as on the field with Andrew Hawkins and Travis Benjamin, the Browns will be able to overwhelm a lot of defenses just based on pure speed.

With the Twenty Sixth Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select OLB Ryan Shazier, Ohio State

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I envision some changes coming to the Browns defense next season. At least one of the current outside linebackers is likely going to move inside. If I had to guess, I’d say it’s probably going to be Paul Kruger. If/when that happens, the Browns are likely to need another outside linebacker/edge rusher. Shazier would create an exciting outside tandem with last year’s #6 pick Barkevious Mingo. Like Mingo, Shazier will need to add some bulk/strength, but his flat out speed and excellent instincts should allow him to excel at the next level.

With the Thirty Fifth Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select G David Yankey, Stanford

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As the Browns failed to address either of the massive holes in their offensive line at Guard so far this off-season, they’re almost certain to attempt to do so in the draft. I think David Yankey may be the most natural fit for a zone blocking scheme in this draft. He’s got great body control and lateral movement abilities. Additionally, I really like Yankey’s ability to square up on a target in motion, that coupled with his high intelligence make him a great candidate to operate in a Kyle Shanahan ZBS.

With the Seventy First Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste, Nebraska

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What I like about Jean-Baptiste is his size. He’s 6’3, 218 pounds. He isn’t as physical add you’d like for a player of his size, but he does has very good read abilities and comes across as a bit of a ball hawk. I very much like the option of a longer, bigger corner opposite Joe Haden.

With the Eighty Third Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select QB Jimmy Garoppolo, Eastern Illinois.

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I can’t see any way around the Browns drafting a QB at some point in this draft. My hope is that they don’t gamble on Manziel/Bridgewater/Bortles early, but rather look to the early third round and Garoppolo, Murray or Mettenberger, in that order.

Garoppolo to me is probably the most intriguing quarterback prospect in this draft. The things I like the most about Garoppolo are his quick set up and delivery, his confidence in the pocket, and his short memory. He keeps a cool head in just about every situation, and in my experience those are the types of quarterbacks that thrive at the next level.

With the One Hundred Second Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select 102 RB Bishop Sankey, Washington

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Don’t mistake this quote for a lack of confidence in a backfield of Ben Tate and Dion Lewis. I really do like the idea of that set. That said, it’s always wise to build depth at vital positions, and as last season proved, running back is important.

There are some facets of Bishop Sankey’s game that I legitimately love. He’s got excellent vision, sees holes and has good burst speed through them. Excellent lateral movement, he makes tacklers miss in tight spaces. He has a natural forward lean and impressive core strength to power through interior runs. Sankey has good durability, and has never missed a start at any level.

With the One Hundred Twenty Third Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select ILB Christian Jones, Florida State University.

I love Christian Jones. I honestly think he’s a second – third round talent, but he slipped to me in the third. Long term, I think Jones could easily develop into the Browns leader on defense in place of the recently released D’Qwell Jackson.

Jones is just a fantastic athlete. He’s big and lengthy, with fluid hips and motion. He can blanket tight ends and receivers, and is a solid tackler.

With the One Hundred Thirty-Third Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select DE George Uko, USC

When we get to around this point in the draft, we start looking more at talent and potential than necessarily production. George Uko fits that bill. He’s an interesting prospect from USC, who rotated through every position in every set on the USC defensive line. He’s played Nose Tackle, Defensive Tackle and Defensive End. He’s got outstanding initial burst, good hands and has more than enough athleticism to be a legitimate pass rush threat at the next level and collapse the pocket. He struggles against the run, so he has the potential to not be an every down lineman, but his upside is worth the gamble of a late fourth round pick.

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With the One Hundred Sixty-Fourth Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select 64 WR Jeff Janis, Saginaw Valley

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Again, I’m going to try and hit on an under the radar guy with our late round picks. Jeff Janis, who you’ve never heard of, played WR for Saginaw Valley in college, which you’ve also never heard of. That means nothing to me in grading a prospect however. Janis is big ( 6’3″ tall, 219 pounds), fast (official 4.42 40 time at the combine, but he has been clocked as low as 4.30 and 4.32) and smart. More importantly, he catches anything near him. I’ve watched about an hour of film on him, including every target he got in 2013, and I’m sold. I’m convinced if he had played at a big name school, he would be a top 10 draft pick. It’s like that.

With the One Hundred Ninety-Fifth Pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, the Cleveland Browns select 95 CB Aaron Colvin, Oklahoma

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Complete First Round:

1. QB TEDDY BRIDGEWATER, HOUSTON TEXANS

2. OT GREG ROBINSON, ST. LOUIS RAMS

3. OT JAKE MATTHEWS, JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS

4. WR SAMMY WATKINS, CLEVELAND BROWNS

5. DE JADEVEON CLOWNEY, OAKLAND RAIDERS

6. OLB KHALIL MACK, ATLANTA FALCONS

7. OLB ANTHONY BARR, TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

8. QB BLAKE BORTLES, MINNESOTA VIKINGS

9. ILB C.J. MOSLEY, BUFFALO BILLS

10. CB DARQUEZE DENNARD, DETROIT LIONS

11. S HA’SEAN CLINTON-DIX, TENNESSEE TITANS

12. OT TAYLOR LEWAN, NEW YORK GIANTS

13. WR JORDAN MATTHEWS, ST. LOUIS RAMS

14. DT AARON DONALD, CHICAGO BEARS

15. OT ZACK MARTIN, PITTSBURGH STEELERS

16. DE SCOTT CRICHTON, DALLAS COWBOYS

17. WR MIKE EVANS, BALTIMORE RAVENS

18. TE ERIC EBRON, NEW YORK JETS

19. CB JUSTIN GILBERT, MIAMI DOLPHINS

20. QB JOHNNY MANZIEL, ARIZONA CARDINALS

21. S JIMMIE WARD, GREEN BAY PACKERS

22. OLB DEE FORD, PHILADELPHIA EAGLES

23. WR DAVANTE ADAMS, KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

24. S CALVIN PRYOR, CINCINNATI BENGALS

25. DT LOUIS NIX III, SAN DIEGO CHARGERS

26. OLB RYAN SHAZIER, CLEVELAND BROWNS

27. OLB KYLE VAN NOY, NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

28. OT CAMERON FLEMING, CAROLINA PANTHERS

29. DT TIMMY JERNIGAN, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

30. DT RA’SHEDE HAGEMAN, SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS

31. CB KYLE FULLER, DENVER BRONCOS

32. OT ANTONIO RICHARDSON, SEATTLE SEAHAWKS

Shawn is the Editor-In-Chief and Lead Writer for Dawg Pound Nation.  He’s also an Army Sergeant, married to the beautiful and brilliant @MrsStarr, dad to three and aspiring Browns Writer.  You can follow him on Twitter @ShawnMStarr or @DawgPoundNews, as well as on the Dawg Pound Nation Facebook Page.

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Random NFL Offseason Musings


There are a lot of interesting things that have happened so far in the month and a half or so since the NFL season came to an end, and there will likely be quite a bit more craziness leading up to, during, and even following the NFL Draft in May.

Here are some random tidbits and thoughts on what’s happened so far and some of the things that could happen going forward.  Some are Browns-related, some not so much.

MAURICE JONES DREW IS REPORTEDLY SEEKING $3.5 MILLION PER SEASON.  Prior to the Ben Tate signing I was an advocate of considering Jones Drew on a cheap 2-year deal to provide a veteran presence, solid pass-protection and pass-catching on third downs, and a possible fountain-of-youth season similar to the one Jamal Lewis had after signing with the Browns in 2007.  Apparently MJD, though, still sees himself as a starting running back, although the rest of the NFL doesn’t appear to agree.  In a world where Tate, a 25-year old back without much wear on his tires, just signed a deal to be the clear-cut starter for the Browns that will only pay him $3.5 million per season if he reaches incentives, MJD will probably need to adjust his expectations if he wants to find a new home.  That said, I still think he could offer a valuable contribution for someone next year.

MJD's words to the NFL

MJD’s words to the NFL

I LIKE THE BROWNS EXPLORING THE POSSIBILITY OF SIGNING ALEX CARRINGTON.  Carrington is a solid player.  He’s built well to play the defensive end in a 3-4 and looked poised to really tap into his potential as a starter with Mike Pettine’s defense in Buffalo last year before an injury derailed his season.  Injuries, unfortunately, have been a common theme for Carrington.  If he can stay healthy, though, he could be a nice addition to the defensive line rotation.  I don’t think the Browns would look to trade or cut Ahtyba Rubin immediately if Carrington signs, but 2014 would probably give him an opportunity to become a lower-priced alternative to re-signing Rubin when his contract expires at the end of the season.

ABOUT THAT INTEREST IN PAUL MCQUISTAN, THOUGH.  The Browns had the 6’6″, 315-pound McQuistan in for a visit on the same day as Carrington.  McQuistan played in all 16 games for Seattle last season, and he graded out as one of the weaker offensive linemen in the NFL (Pro Football Focus (PFF) rated him 71st overall among 76 offensive tackles a year ago, with a really awful average rating per game of -2.58 for his 9 games at tackle).  This is typical for McQuistan.  Theoretically, he is a versatile lineman who can play tackle or guard.  The reality, though, is that McQuistan provides mediocre depth at guard and is going to be a liability if a team is in a position where they have to play him at tackle.  The Browns have better linemen on their roster, and there are much better linemen available in free agency and the draft.  Perhaps they feel that having a player available who can fail miserably at both guard and tackle is a necessity and are trying to replace Oneil Cousins?  I don’t really get the interest here.

Paul McQuistan...why?

Paul McQuistan…why?

JARED ALLEN TO THE SEAHAWKS WOULD BE SIMPLY UNFAIR.  Anyone who watched the Seahawks play, even if the only game they saw was the Super Bowl, knows that their defense is tremendous.  Yes, they lost Brandon Browner and Walter Thurmond III to free agency.  But as long as Pete Carroll is there coaching up a secondary that includes Richard Sherman and Earl Thomas, it will be a strength.  They’ve resigned Michael Bennett, and now it looks like they might land Jared Allen.  Those few of you that follow me on Twitter have already seen all of these figures, but for anyone else, this helps put into perspective how great Allen is (not to mention how pathetic the Browns have been at finding an elite pass rusher).  Over the past 12 seasons, the highest sack total any individual defensive player on the Browns has produced is 11.0 (rookie OLB Kamerion Wimbley in 2006).  Last year, Jared Allen had what is universally being called a down year.  In fact, PFF stated that he had a “an extremely rapid decline” in 2013.  And in that down year, he had 11.5 sacks – which would have led the Browns in any of the last 12 years.  Further, Allen’s lowest total of the last 7 seasons was 11.0 sacks – still enough to tie the Browns highest total since 2001.  I guess this leads to two conclusions:  1. the Browns haven’t had a really good pass rusher in a really long time and 2. Jared Allen has been a terrific player for a long time, and he’s still capable of being a force.  Oh, and in case you were wondering, the last player to post more than 11 sacks for the Browns was Jamir Miller, with 13 in 2001.  As Browns fans know all too well, he would never appear in another regular season game after tearing his Achilles tendon in the 2002 preseason.  Reviewing the breaks that the Browns have gotten since 1999 is like repeatedly being poked in the eye, isn’t it?  Anyhow, while we’re on the subject of Jared Allen, watch this awesome play:

CHAMP BAILEY IS THE BEST CORNERBACK STILL AVAILABLE.  I don’t have any idea how much money former Broncos cornerback Champ Bailey wants in order to continue his NFL career in a new city.  I also don’t know for sure how much he has left in his tank.  But it wouldn’t surprise me if Bailey has another above-average season in him.  Granted, he’s no longer playing at the level he played in his prime, a level which makes him a surefire Hall-of-Famer.  However, look at the overall ratings he’s received among all NFL CBs from PFF:

2009: 7th    2010: 3rd    2011: 18th    2012: 10th

All of those ratings came after his 31st birthday.  To put them in perspective, the highest rating Joe Haden has had in his career was 6th (oddly enough, that was in his rookie season of 2010), and Haden rated 18th last year.  Now, last season was a tough one for Bailey.  He dealt with injuries that kept him out of all but 5 regular season games, and looked like he was still dealing with the injuries when he did play.  Despite that, his average game rating from PFF was still higher than Buster Skrine’s.  Skrine rated 106th among all 110 qualifying NFL CBs last year, and right now stands as the number 2 CB for the Browns again this year.  So, if Champ Bailey was willing to consider coming to town on an incentive-laden 1 or 2-year deal, I think it would be intriguing.  If he could offer one year of just solid play, an improvement over Skrine’s performance, it would greatly benefit the Browns defense.  Not only would it upgrade that number 2 CB spot, but it would allow Skrine to move inside and focus on being the slot corner, which is a better fit for him anyhow.  Thus, the defense is strengthened in two spots.  And perhaps the Browns could take a cornerback a little later in the draft – rather than trying to use one of their top 3 picks to land one of the few who should be able to start immediately – and allow him a year of development before stepping into a starting role.  Having Bailey here would also give him the opportunity to learn from one of the best cornerbacks who has ever played the game.

YOU DO KNOW THAT CHAMP BAILEY SIGNING WILL NEVER HAPPEN, RIGHT, ROB?  Yes, I do.  I’m just saying that after looking a little closer at Bailey’s performance over the past few seasons, I think it could be a sensible signing.  And the Browns still have a boatload of cap room.  So why not?  Maybe they will…and maybe he will…no, no.  They won’t.

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SHAWN LAUVAO GOT MORE MONEY IN FREE AGENCY THAN GEOFF SCHWARTZ.  No, really.  Shawn Lauvao, a human turnstile whom PFF rated 70th out of 81 guards last year, was paid $17 million over 4 years by the Washington Redskins, with $5 million guaranteed.  Geoff Schwartz, whom PFF rated 8th out of 81 guards last year and was pretty much unanimously considered the best guard available in free agency, received $16.8 million over 4 years from the New York Giants, with $4.7 million guaranteed.  I don’t know what else to say.  Those Redskins just keep cranking out the hits.

Shawn Lauvao got more money than Geoff Schwartz. Your thoughts?

Shawn Lauvao got more money than Geoff Schwartz. Your thoughts?

I THINK DRAFT DAY IS REALLY GOING TO BE A FUN MOVIE TO WATCH.  I mean, come on, tell me you aren’t excited to see Kevin Costner as the general manager of the Browns!  In a movie that was shot in Browns headquarters and at the actual NFL draft!  It’s going to be cool!  And the first two voices in the trailer are Tony Rizzo’s and Aaron Goldhammer’s!  Whoops…I know, nothing’s perfect.  But the rest of the trailer makes the movie seem like a lot of fun for Browns fans.  I can’t wait.

SO T.J. WARD DECIDED TO SOUND OFF ON TWITTER.  The former Browns strong safety and new Broncos acquisition decided he’d go on Twitter and inform the world that the Browns offered him “nothing.”  I’m not sure what T.J. was trying to accomplish with that tweet.  Are fans supposed to feel sorry for him?  Angry at the Browns?  Disappointed with their lives in general because he is no longer with the Browns?  I really don’t know.  What I believe I do know is that it might not be the best reflection on Ward that the team which knows him best, the team with which he’s been a starter for the past 4 seasons, apparently decided that he was so imminently replaceable that it wasn’t worth spending time negotiating with him.  Ward’s tweet does explain a couple of things, though.  For one, it shows why his agent put that comment out in the press that they were negotiating with the Browns: in order to get ahead of the revelation that the Browns were happy to let him walk and try to keep his price up by making it seem that the team had interest.  It also helps to explain why Ward got what seems like such a cheap contract: because front office people in the NFL didn’t think he was worth more.  And one other thought: if Ward is trying to make the Browns look bad with that tweet, someone should remind him that the Browns signed Donte Whitner, who is a better player than him.  Advantage: Cleveland.

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Hey T.J.: we’ve moved on and you should too.

A NEW MOCK DRAFT FROM NFL.COM HAS THE BROWNS TAKING TEDDY BRIDGEWATER AT 26.  I used to think that pro day performances from quarterbacks were really a waste of time.  But if all it takes is a couple of little hiccups during Bridgewater’s pro day to make NFL teams pass on him so that he falls into the Browns’ lap at 26, then maybe they are worthwhile.  I’ve gone on record that even though Teddy is my top choice for the Browns with the 4th pick, I won’t be angry if they pass on him there.  There are other players at the top of the draft who are very talented and would look really good in a Browns jersey.  I don’t believe that he will really fall to 26, but if he does and the Browns don’t take him there (assuming they don’t draft another QB at 4), I will be upset.  Not that the Browns, or anyone else for that matter, will care that I’m upset.  I’m just letting you – the kind, beautiful, brilliant, discerning readers of DPN – know that this is the case.  And that is despite the fact that after watching this video you will be convinced that Teddy Bridgewater could not possibly have a future in the NFL.  Warning: you should not watch this horrific disaster if there are children in the room.  That’s right, ladies and gentlemen.  It’s Teddy Bridgewater’s calamitous pro day:

I’M NOT BRAGGING, BUT… I really did suggest that the Browns should draft Vontaze Burfict when he was still available in the 6th round of the 2012 NFL draft.  He’s gone on to become a superstud linebacker for the Bengals, and man would he be nice to have on this Browns defense.

AND THE REASON I DON’T BRAG ABOUT THAT IS… because I actually believed for a while that Brandon Weeden was going to put it together and be a legitimate top-15 starting quarterback in the NFL.  Now Brandon Weeden is going to serve as the waterboy for the Cowboys or something, less than 2 years removed from being the 22nd pick in the NFL draft despite being a 4th-round talent.  But I got hooked by him.  I admit it.  For what it’s worth, I realized after the Miami game to open this past season that it was hopeless, but up until then I still had hope.

And so, the whole Burfict thing really just goes to prove the old adage about the blind squirrel and the nut.

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Rob Magee is a lifelong Browns fan who suffered his most devastating punch to the gut when a friend recorded The Langoliers over his VHS copy of the 1993 Browns vs. Steelers game that featured two Eric Metcalf punt returns for touchdowns.  For more tidbits,stats, and discussions on the latest happenings with the Browns and around the NFL, you can follow him on Twitter @robisindy.  You can send your thoughts to him at DPNRob@gmail.com.

DPN Browns Sports Page – March 18th, 2014


A few small bits of Browns interest happened yesterday, so I’ll jot them down here for you to recap.

First, recently released Browns QB Brandon Weeden signed a two year v league minimum deal with the Dallas Cowboys.

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Speaking of Quarterbacks, the Browns are still rumored to be interested in trading for or otherwise acquiring Texans QB Matt Schaub.

Cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, who the Browns invited to come for a visit, signed a 5 year, 35 million dollar deal with the New York Giants.

The Browns met with Jets CB Aaron Berry. Berry entered the league in 2009 as an undrafted free agent with the Lions. Berry tore his ACL in July of 2013 and missed the season. He played under Browns Head Coach Mike Pettine during his tenure with the Jets.

Cleveland Browns Mock Draft 2014: 7-Round Predictions, Post Ben Tate Signing


Let’s preface this thing by saying that yes, Sammy Watkins is easily the best talent of the 2014 NFL draft class.

This isn’t the place to debate if the Cleveland Browns should draft him with the fourth pick, though. He’s actually gone in my mock, stolen at No. 2 by the St. Louis Rams. Before him, Teddy Bridgewater—who I have rated as the draft’s top QB—went off the board to the Houston Texans.

And the Jacksonville Jaguars snagged Blake Bortles one spot ahead of them.

That’s the scenario; accept it, so we can move on to players actually still on the board.

With the fourth pick in the 2014 NFL draft, the Cleveland Browns select…

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4. Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M

Watkins may have been gone at No. 2, but the Browns luck out with potentially the most talented quarterback in the draft falling into their laps at No. 4.

I’ve watched the tape, read all of the analysis and I’m convinced Johnny Manziel is worth the risk for the Cleveland Browns. He can be the future franchise quarterback that has eluded the team for so long.

Manziel has the goods, really. The leadership, arm talent and athleticism are all there. He senses pressure well and moves the pocket while keeping his eyes down field. Name a throw quarterbacks need to make; he can make ‘em all.

He’s the type of guy who doesn’t roll over and accept failure. He’s too proud and arrogant—in a good way—for that. That determination, drive and Tom Brady-esque passion is something that can uplift his teammates and push them towards greatness.

But he has something extra, too.

Bill Walsh called it “spontaneous genius” in his QB evaluation notes. Others call it the “it” factor, that helps a player find a way to somehow make it work no matter how bad a play breaks down.

Johnny Football’s got it, and he’s bringing it to Cleveland.

The best part is, with some time to learn from Kyle Shanahan and develop while Brian Hoyer gets his chance, he could be better than anyone imagined.

26. Ra’Shede Hageman, DT/DE, Minnesota

What, a defensive lineman at No. 26?! The Browns’ front-seven is deep, you’re taking crazy pills, Mike!

Before you panic and start listing the plethora of other needs on the Browns roster, take a minute and cool down. Also, keep in mind Ahtyba Rubin is a free agent in 2015, along with Joe Haden, Jordan Cameron, Jabaal Sheard, Phil Taylor, Tashaun Gipson; you get the picture.

You also can’t just list positions of need in order and assume an NFL personnel department is going to run down it in swift fashion. The trenches are just as important as the people touching the football, so hear me out, at least.

Hageman is a physical freak. Before the 2013 season, CBS Sports’ Bruce Feldman listed him as No. 2 on his “20 Craziest athletes in college sports” piece. No. 1 on that list is Jadeveon Clowney.

His size (6’6”, 311 lbs) is ideal for a five-technique in a 3-4 defense. Plus, his experience playing both inside 1- and 3- techs make him an invaluably versatile piece for Mike Pettine’s hybrid scheme.

So, how does a player with that much upside make it to No. 26?

There are some concerns.

Hageman was a highly recruited tight end in high school and converted to defensive end once he arrived at Minnesota. He slid inside to tackle in 2011 and really began to grow into the position. However, his lack of production in his senior season led some to question his work ethic and consistency as an every-down lineman.

He’s a boom-or-bust guy in the truest sense of the phrase. But Pettine is known for being a molder of talent, and if he gets Hageman to boom, there’s no limit to how dominant the Browns’ already imposing front-seven could be.

35. Allen Robinson, WR, Penn State

Now, let’s get another offensive weapon for Hoyer and Manziel.

There’s a chance Allen Robinson could be off the board here, but I’m counting on speed concerns to let him get this far. He ran a 4.60 40-yard dash at the Scouting Combine, but you have to know by now that straight-line speed and quickness are two very different things altogether.

Robinson is a refined pass-catcher with long arms who has uncanny ability to high-point passes and win contested battles. His catch radius is massive, and he plays physically to gain separation at the line of scrimmage and extend plays after the catch. Think Anquan Boldin, and I’m not joking.

He’s not a burner, but he does accelerate well and is a physical runner with run-and-catch ability.

71. Brandon Thomas, OG, Clemson

What did I say about the trenches?

Cleveland needs to find some more compatible offensive linemen for Kyle Shanahan’s zone-blocking system. Brandon Thomas is the Browns’ guy here in the third round.

He played the last two seasons at left tackle after switching from guard the previous season. His elite upper body strength—on tape and in the weight room (35 bench press repetitions at the combine)—project him as an excellent slide-and-drive zone blocker.

83. Pierre Desir, CB, Lindenwood

Tall cornerbacks are all the rage thanks to the Seattle Seahawks, and the growing size and athleticism of NFL receivers doesn’t hurt Pierre Desir’s cause either.

Desir of Lindenwood, a small D-II program, did his draft appeal some favors with an impressive showing at the Senior Bowl. Rob Rang of NFLDraftScout.com said he demonstrated the best “fluidity and speed” of the group of cornerbacks in Mobile, Ala.

After the Senior Bowl, I took a deeper look and Desir passes the eye test. His 25 interceptions in college are also an indicator of impressive ball skills, to go along with his appealing size (6’1”) and excellent athleticism.

102. Yawin Smallwood, ILB, UConn

Pettine already described Yawin Smallwood from Connecticut, but may or may not have known he was doing so:

“To me, it is a size and speed league for sure,” Pettine said, per Nate Ulrich of Ohio.com. “Given the nature of spread offenses, I’ve always been one I’d rather have smaller guys that are faster. Sometimes the best place where that shows up is usually with your linebacker corps. You look for run-and-hit guys who can go sideline to sideline.”

Signing Karlos Dansby was a great idea and first step to achieving his vision of the Browns LB corps. Adding a young and talented player like Smallwood to develop and ease into the role would be an even better one.

123. Kenny Ladler, FS, Vanderbilt

Secondary depth is never a bad thing, especially with a guy who can potentially fill in at either safety position and eventually become a starter. Kenny Ladler is known equally for his jarring, fumble-inducing hits as his instincts and quickness in coverage.

133. James White, RB, Wisconsin

Oh, you wanted another Big Ten running back, did you?

Sorry, Buckeyes fans, but James White makes much more sense here for the Browns than Carlos Hyde does in the second round, especially after the team inked Ben Tate to a two-year deal on March 15. There’s also little—if any—sense in selecting a running back for Shanahan’s rushing game before the third day of the draft.

White (5’9”, 204 lbs) is a quick and deliberate runner who has good burst and vision. I compare him physically and by the way he plays to Cincinnati’s Giovanni Bernard (5’9”, 208 lbs).

He’s an excellent all-around back capable of being an every-down rusher if necessary due to an excellent pass-blocking acumen and ability to catch the ball effectively out of the backfield.

164. Colt Lyerla, TE, Oregon

Why not, right?

I’m not saying Colt Lyerla is the next Rob Gronkowski, but the comparisons are certainly there. Although, I’m not sure Gronk ever admitted to cocaine use—via court summons—and accumulated as many speeding tickets as the former Oregon Duck. Greg Little and Josh Gordon can help him with that, though, right?

Like Gronk he is a physical standout who has all the potential in the world on a football field. I’m not sure you’ll find anyone who questions that take. Lyerla staying out of trouble is the main concern.

Some team is going to gamble on him, though. Why not the Browns at the top of the sixth round before others decide to take the chance?

195. Chandler Jones, WR, SJSU

The Browns add another weapon to round out, what I think was a very successful draft. Right, guys… Right?

Despite missing the combine—a legitimate snub—Chandler Jones is destined to be that next late-round receiver everyone scratches their heads about in two years.

Don’t believe me, just wait.

He’s a terrific route runner, fluid and snappy out of his breaks and has a knack for finding open spaces in defenses. His quick feet and explosiveness help him create separation and get in position to make plays.

Jones projects inside to the slot, a position the Browns could definitely use some added depth.

Mike Hoag is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America, DBN writer and a Browns featured columnist for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter @MikeHoagJr.

Sammy Watkins Posts Instagram Photo In Browns Gear


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Sammy Watkins got Browns fans attention when he posted a photo of what he would look like in a Browns uniform.

Watkins is considered the best Wide Receiver in a draft class full of outstanding Wide Receiver prospects. There has been a lot of speculation that if the Browns elect to pass over the Quarterbacks available when they select with the 4th pick in the 2014 draft, they may choose to take Sammy Watkins.

Shawn is the Editor-In-Chief and Lead Writer for Dawg Pound Nation.  He’s also an Army Sergeant, married to the beautiful and brilliant @MrsStarr, dad to three and aspiring Browns Writer.  You can follow him on Twitter @ShawnMStarr or @DawgPoundNews, as well as on the Dawg Pound Nation Facebook Page.

Charlie’s Mock Draft 2.0


Well, that last mock got a lot (emphasis on a lot) of negative feedback, but hey, it comes with the business. Analysts really get shots fired at them, but you go back, look at more things and you come up with a second. That’s what I did, looked at the comments, took in the feedback and here I am.

*Note that this draft started before the combine ended, and as of today Bortles was the No. 1 pick for McShay and Kiper.*

First Round, 4th Overall — Blake Bortles, QB, University of Central Florida

                            -Previous Picks: Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A

You guys clearly didn’t like taking Manziel at #4 and neither did I. Problem is, I really don’t like taking Watkins either. Watkins isn’t tall enough for me. I want two Josh Gordon’s on the field, two tall receivers that can win a jump ball. Anyway, back to Bortles. He reminds me of an Andrew Luck. He has pocket presence but can avoid the pressure and make plays with his feet like this (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWgzVFjVOxg) This pick is more enticing than Johnny Football, but when I started the last mock, Banner was still here and was head-over-heels for him, so I feel better with this pick.

                            -Next Best if Not Available: (Sadly) Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A

First Round, 26th Overall — David Yankey, G, Stanford

                            -Previous Picks: Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State

This guy is big. He is 6”6’ and 315 pounds, the same size as Joe Thomas and I see this kid He looking like Thomas. He can bulldoze defenders and push the pile. He was an amazing run blocker, cutting holes open and pushing the way clear and this excites me (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RS2Zw-CbBho). He makes time for plays, he moves defenders where he needs them to go and that could be essential for a mediocre run game like Cleveland has.

                             -Next Best if Not Available: Xavier Su’a-Filo, G, Towson

Second Round, 35th Overall — Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State

                             -Previous Picks: Tre Mason, RB, Auburn

This time Benjamin fell to the second round and I think that’s fair enough. This wide receiver fits the Brown’s offense the best. He’s tall and athletic like our main guy Josh Gordon. Sure, Benjamin drops balls occasionally due to his inconsistent approach to catching a ball, but with time and training I think that can be reversed. Working with Gordon might help there too. I love this kid’s power, combined with his speed (i.e. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PWIzcViQu1o) He can catch it on the run, and break through tackles and spin through them and that type of play in the NFL is explosive and can give the opposing defense nightmares.

                             -Next Best if Not Available: Davante Adams, WR, Fresno State

Third Round, 71st Overall — Carlos Hyde, RB, Ohio State University

                             -Previous Picks: Jared Abbrederis, WR, Wisconsin

Carlos Hyde is the thunder to Dion Lewis’ lightning. This explosive combination should be able to get it done in Cleveland. Hyde makes you tackle him with more than one guy and he was fun to watch on Saturday Afternoons at Ohio State. He may not have great speed but he can still beat you to the corner (i.e.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YPju8Qn4NgE) He’s also elusive and explosive, Cleveland definitely shouldn’t pass on him here.

                             -Next Best if Not Available: Terrance West, RB, Towson

Third Round, 83rd Overall — Jack Mewhort, OT, Ohio State University

                             -Previous Picks: AJ McCarron, QB, Alabama

I know, two Ohio State picks in a row. Homage much? No. Our offensive line needs a shake up. Mewhort is another big guy. 6” 6’, 309 pounds and a lot of power. Mewhort blocked for Hyde and I think there’d be a connection between a guy and the guy making holes for him. Mewhort knows what Hyde wants and would know how to block for him. Mewhort and Yankey bring size and power, and could make Cleveland’s ground game noticeable.

                             -Next Best if Not Available: Anthony Steen, G, Alabama

Fourth Round, 102nd Overall — Jaylen Watkins, CB, Florida

                             -Previous Picks: Jaylen Watkins, CB, Florida

I’m still sticking with this pick. As said before, it’d be best for Skrine if he was in the nickel, and picking Jaylen here would put him there. Watkins is 6” 2’, 3 inches taller than Haden and has about the same vertical as him. Haden jumped 35’ at his combine, Watkins jumped 35.5’. Watkins can read plays, and then make plays, he’s physical, tough, and doesn’t give up. I really like this pick and it will make the opposing offense find ways to score, rather than them just throwing to their number two receiver. (http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=8586520) He can read the QB’s eyes and jump in front of routes.

                             -Next Best if Not Available: Pierre Desir, CB, Lindenwood

Fourth Round, 123rd Overall — Adrian Hubbard, ILB, Alabama

                             -Previous Picks: Adrian Hubbard, ILB, Alabama

I’m still sticking with Hubbard over Barrow mainly because of size. Hubbard weighs 30 pounds more and is 4 inches taller and I like his athleticism. He ran a 4.69 40 yard dash and has a vertical of 38.5 inches. And after the release of D’Qwell Jackson, the Browns need a playmaker in this position. (http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=9990260) Again, the play doesn’t even have time to develop and Hubbard is already back there sacking the guy.

                             -Next Best if Not Available: Lamin Barrow, OLB, Louisiana State

Fifth Round, 133rd Overall: DeAnthony Thomas, RB, Oregon

                             -Previous Picks: DeAnthony Thomas, RB, Oregon

I’m also sticking with this pick, at this point an explosive player like Thomas is too much for Cleveland to pass on. A 4.34 40 time and his elusiveness. That’s amazing raw talent, and I still don’t understand how he’s still falling to us here. He’s a 1st and 2nd down guy, followed by Hyde on third down. That’s an Ohio thunderstorm if I’ve ever seen one.

                             -Next Best if not Available: James Wilder Jr. RB, FSU

Sixth Round, 164th Overall: Will Clarke, DE, West Virginia University

                             -Previous Picks: Andre Hal, CB, Vanderbilt

Rather than changing our secondary, I see that this fits better. The Browns didn’t get a lot of sacks from their D-Line blitzes and I think this guy will help. He’s big and athletic. He’s 6”6’ and ran a 4.72 40. I see him pushing around the corner, kind of like a Dwight Freeney. Spinning around and getting the quick TFL or sack.

                             -Next Best if Not Available: Brent Urban, DE, Virginia

Seventh Round, 195th Overall: Dri Archer, RB/WR, Kent State

                             -Previous Picks: Jordan Najvar, TE, Baylor

I was hoping this would be the first time Archer’s name would pop in a mock but unfortunately Shawn took him with his last one. Living 15 minutes away from Dix Stadium (close enough to hear the fireworks after a win) and being able to watch this guy was great. He’s explosive. He can play RB or WR and torch any defender. He was two, TWO ONE-HUNDREDTHS off of Chris Johnson’s record and that speed is wanted here in Cleveland.

Next Best if Not Available: L’Damian Washington, WR, Missouri

Recap:   This draft is one I feel more comfortable with and that’s mainly because when I started the last one, as I said, Banner and Lombardi were still here, but I was too far into scrap it. I hope you guys like this one more, because I know I do.