Tag: Cleveland Browns

2020 NFL Draft Recap: AFC North

Baltimore Ravens

Favorite Pick: All from the first two days – Seriously, what the heck do the Ravens do to ensure the right players fall to them every draft? Patrick Queen was the best LB in the draft for me, LB was the biggest need for the Ravens, and he falls right in their lap. Next round they go ahead and grab J.K Dobbins to start working with Mark Ingram and should be the featured back by the end of the season. Then Justin Madubuike slips to them as a DT that fits the Ravens way perfectly. Devin Duvernay is easily a second-round talent but, due to the depth in WR this year, falls to the end of round three and will be able to be a quality second receiver across Hollywood Brown. Malik Harrison is a quality player and basically just gravy for the Ravens in round three.

Least Favorite Pick: None – Seriously, I could try and make a case for Malik Harrison, but I would just be blowing smoke, so I am gonna say I did not have a least favorite pick for the Ravens.

Day Three Sleeper: Round 7, Pick 219 Overall – Geno Stone, S, Iowa – James Proche in the end of round six is another guy to keep an eye on and he easily could have been a selection on day two, but I am going deeper sleeper than that. Nothing about him is prototypical, but he is an intelligent center fielding safety that the Ravens will almost certainly get the most out of.

Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Tyler Huntley, QB, Utah – The Ravens brought in Trace McSorley a season ago as a sixth-round pick and, despite being inactive most regular season games, he balled out in the preseason. Now they bring in Tyler Huntley to add to the QB room, but he has the athleticism to potentially shift to WR. I thought he was a draftable guy based purely on athleticism, although the he is quite skinny which is a concern and the time it takes to let the ball loose may be what prevents him from sticking at QB.

Cincinnati Bengals

Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 1 Overall – Joe Burrow, QB, LSU – Burrow was set to go first overall for months and it came to fruition despite reports of the Dolphins making a real push to trade up. Burrow has possibly the greatest single season in college football history and pulled off the rare feat of Heisman Trophy winner, National Champion, and first overall pick all within the same year. If there is a knock it is the fact he was little more than average in seasons prior, but there is no arguing what he did in 2019.

Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 65 Overall – Logan Wilson, LB, Wyoming – I didn’t dislike this pick, but I didn’t love it either and you can’t argue with Joe Burrow at the top of the draft and Tee Higgins at the top of round two. Zack Baun was still on the board when the Bengals selected Wilson and I don’t think there is much argument that Wilson is a better prospect. Given the new CBA rules, a diluted urine sample doesn’t have the same impact it once did, so that should not have prevented the Bengals from selecting Baun.

Day Three Sleeper: Round 5, Pick 147 Overall – Khalid Hareem, Edge, Notre Dame – Kareem was never a dominant pass rusher at Notre Dame and that won’t be what the Bengals are looking for from him despite his size being that of a traditional edge rusher. Instead, he will be the kind of guy who lines up on the right tackle and stuffs him in his place allowing the second level to come up and stop the run. He is first and second down depth, and quality value at this point in the draft.

Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: None – Again, I am not going to force a name I don’t believe in. The Bengals had a quality draft, but they haven’t brought in much talent thus far in UDFA. Not a knock, it is still somewhat early, just none that I see as worthy of calling out.

Cleveland Browns

Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 44 Overall – Grant Delpit, S, LSU – A throwback strong safety, Delpit is a downhill defender looking for the big hit to dislodge the football in the passing game and can stop a running back in the open field. His final season at LSU was hampered by injuries after a stellar 2018. Had he repeated what he did a season ago, he would have been a first-round pick, so grabbing him in round two is a great grab for Cleveland.

Least Favorite Pick: Round 1, Pick 10 Overall – Jedrick Wills, OT, Alabama – Said it in regards to the Jets first round selection, I don’t dislike Jedrick Wills, I just love Tristan Wirfs. Wills’ size screams for a potential move down to guard at some point in the future but he will probably be the week one left tackle, something I just feel there were better plug and play options at this spot.

Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 115 Overall – Harrison Bryant, TE, Florida Atlantic – The Browns have no shortage in pass catching TEs as they bring back David Njoku, signed Austin Hooper, and now draft Harrison Bryant. Bryant will be the clear cut third option at tight end this season but could have a breakout sophomore campaign if they cut ties with Njoku. Unlike Njoku, Bryant is a quality blocker and will bring a multi-dimensional skill set to the club.

Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Kevin Davidson, QB, Princeton – Anytime there is an Ivy League QB added in UDFA it is worthy of keeping an eye on. Davidson did not see the field much his first three seasons but broke out in his senior year. He is an intelligent QB, not just because he is an Ivy Leaguer, with good touch and accuracy in short to intermediate throws. He does not have a big arm and struggles with the deep ball, so a trip to the practice squad is most likely for Davidson.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Favorite Pick: Round 2, Pick 49 Overall – Chase Claypool, WR, Notre Dame – it seems you could really highlight any team that took a WR in this draft and call it a favorite pick or a day three sleeper simply based on the depth at the position this year. Claypool fell right around where he should have been drafted, but you can make the argument to take him in round one, so the Steelers first pick coming in round two and getting Claypool is good value. He is a big body pass catcher that just missed a 4.40-flat 40-yard dash. Full package at receiver that should be a quality number two or three option.

Least Favorite Pick: Round 3, Pick 102 Overall – Alex Highsmith, Edge, Charlotte – Highsmith was productive in the Sun Belt, but he does not have great size or strength, making him primarily a third down edge rusher. Taking him on day three may have made him a sleeper, but on day two ahead of guys like Bradlee Anae and Curtis Weaver I just don’t like the pick.

Day Three Sleeper: Round 4, Pick 135 Overall – Kevin Dotson, G, Louisiana – Dotson was seen by more scouts than would typically be at a Rajin’ Cajun game thanks to fellow line-mate Robert Hunt, but Dotson made the most of the exposure. He is a punishing run blocker who regularly took care of the first level defenders and moved onto the second level. He will be a two position backup to start, but could easily be a starting guard by 2021.

Undrafted Free Agent to Watch: Josiah Coatney, DT, Ole Miss – It wasn’t much of a surprise to see Coatney go undrafted, but he has landed in a great spot for his game. He has ideal size for a DT but can get knocked back too easily and does not excel in pass rush. Overall, he will really have to battle to make the team and will likely start on a practice squad, but I anticipate enough development to stick around and see some playing time over the next few seasons.

The Good, Bad, and Confusing of NFL Moves

We aren’t even a week into the new league year, but already there have been a ton of moves that will help shape the 2018 NFL season. Here is a quick take on the teams I feel have gotten better, worse, and completely confused.

Better

Chicago Bears – They have parted ways with Mike Glennon after giving the reigns over to Mitch Trubisky and brought in two solid backups. I feel like the idea of Chase Daniel is better than the quarterback Chase Daniel, but he is now in Chicago to be the primary backup and will land high on many people’s lists of top backups in the league. Time will tell if Tyler Bray will make the team, but he is another backup with experience.  The Bears are where highly thought of college receivers go to die, so it is about time they sign a big time receiver, and Allen Robinson gives Trubisky a real number one target. Add Prince Amukamara, Aaron Lyncch, Sam Acho,  and resign Kyle Fuller, and the defense gets a boost as well.

Green Bay Packers – Getting DeShone Kizer as the new backup to Aaron Rodgers is an upgrade, Muhammad Wilkerson for just $5M is all upside, and Jimmy Graham gives Rodgers a scary weapon at tight end. Will be interesting to see how the loss of Jody Nelson will impact the team.

Kansas City Chiefs – They dealt away Alex Smith to make room for Patrick Mahomes and brought in a stud receiver for him in Sammy Watkins. Kendall Fuller will take the place of the departed headache in Marcus Peters, while they also add linebacker Anthony Hitchens to an already solid defense.

Los Angeles Rams – Speaking of Marcus Peters, he is now in LA with the Rams, along with new acquisition Aqib Talib improve the Rams secondary, although they did lose talent up front.

Oakland Raiders – Goodbye Michael Crabtree, make room for Jordy Nelson. In addition to adding a reliable receiver, they are taking their chances on former Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin.

San Francisco 49ers – There won’t be a move that goes further under the radar than the 49ers signing Weston Richburg. He takes over as center along side two underperforming first round guards in Laken Tomlinson and Josh Garnett, making the raw talent in front of Jimmy Garappolo something that could become elite. They replace the departed Carlos Hyde with Jerick McKinnon and were the winners in the rush to get Richard Sherman after he was released.

Tennessee Titans – The Titans had DeMarco Murray and Derrick Henry, two backs that run very similarly, but now part ways with Murray and bring in Dion Lewis who will serve as an excellent change of pace back and easy underneath target for Marcus Mariota. They also spend the money get Malcolm Butler as corner, and word is they will allow him to play.

Worse

Dallas Cowboys – Ready for the list of new players the Cowboys have brought in this season? Ok, here it goes:

 

Did you miss it? Yeah, they haven’t brought in anyone of note, their big signing has been the re-signing of their long snapper. Meanwhile they have said goodbye to Anthony Hitchens, Keith Smith will no longer be in at fullback, and Orland Scandrick has been released. Not a good sign for the Cowboys.

New England Patriots – Ok, maybe my fandom is getting in the way here, but I am not one to say “they always lose talent and somehow win the division”. I am one to say “you just traded Jimmy G for practically nothing after sending off Jacoby Brissett in the preseason, who is gonna be the QB of the future?” Add to that the departure of Julian Edelman (I don’t care if he didn’t play last year, he is still the best receiver the team had) and replace him with the always underwhelming Cordarrelle Patterson? Oh, and we already touched on the fact that Dion Lewis and Malcom Butler are gone.

Confused

Arizona Cardinals – Let’s face it, this tweet perfectly sums up the signing of Sam Braford.

 

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But they also sign Mike Glennon, one who we at The Stain have long been fans of. You also bring back Larry Fitzgerald but lose the Brown brothers, John and Jaron (not really brothers).

Cleveland Browns – Ok, you have picks one and four in the draft and seem to be debating between quarterback and running back…so you trade for Tyrod Taylor and sign Carlos Hyde? I am confused. You trade for Jarvis Landry, a very good WR, but you are going to have to give him a very large contract as he is currently under the franchise tag.

New York Jets – The Jets resigned Josh McCown and went out and brought in Teddy Bridgewater, which would be a solid QB room for a team who just might be a few good pieces away from being respectable…so they go out and trade away their 6th overall pick along with picks 37 and 49 and a second next year to jump up to three where they will no doubt add a QB? What a mess.

Why The NFL Can No Longer Be Taken Seriously

“I am very disappointed that the NFL and its hearing office didn’t exercise better judgment in my case.”

Those words were taken directly from Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon’s statement after arbitrator Harold Henderson upheld Gordon’s season-long suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

Let’s just get this out of the way. Gordon is not completely a victim here. He is the idiot that knew exactly the precarious situation he was in when it comes to what goes into his body, and who he surrounds himself with. But in this case, he has every right to feel hard done by.

This also only partly has to do with the two game suspension that Ray Rice got for brutally beating his now wife on camera. It also only partly has to do with the ludicrous four game suspension Matt Prater got for allegedly consuming beer in the privacy and safety of his own living room. And it only partly has to do with the fact that Ndmukong Suh has somehow not been banned for life yet despite repeatedly and deliberately trying to cause life-altering harm to opposing quarterbacks with hits egregiously outside of what is allowed by NFL rules.

You really only have to look at the fact that after Gordon’s suspension for the 2014 season has been completed, he can “apply for reinstatement.” Really?

How hard would it have been to say, “The NFL disciplinary morons, er, powers that be have decided to suspend Josh Gordon for all regular season and playoff games in the coming NFL season. After this suspension has been completed, provided that Mr. Gordon has not found himself in any more trouble with the law, and has strictly observed the NFL’s code of conduct to the same standard that is expected of all its players and employees, he will be able to resume playing professionally in the NFL. If Mr. Gordon fails to avoid legal trouble or otherwise transgresses the code of conduct, additional discipline may be applied.” Or something like that, anyway.

You may agree with my statement, you may wholly disagree with it. You may be able to nitipick some grammar, or perhaps find some other kind of flaw. But I intentionally battered through it in less than a minute, without a law degree for that matter, to prove a point. It took the league four months to decide what to do with Gordon. That’s a really long time to have something hanging over a young man’s head, not to mention his entire team that was depending heavily on his contributions. Four months. And the best they could do was say, “hey, after this year is up, feel free to reapply and if our confederacy of dunces decides you are worthy, maybe we’ll let you back into our club.”

I have to commend Gordon on one thing. Restraint. And while I’m sure he was coached through his statement, mine would only have contained two words, the second of which being “you.”

This is a multi-billion dollar brand, people. You’d think they could get their act together, especially in the embarrassing wake of them screwing up the concussion issue so badly. But no, they truly remain the circular firing squad they’ve been for all recent memory. Two games. Four games. 16 games. It doesn’t matter. They don’t have a clue.