After selecting Jedrick Wills JR 10th overall the Browns have filled the glaring need at left tackle. With picks 41, 74, & 97 due up today for Cleveland, it’s clear they will start to address holes on the defense. Safety and linebacker are the biggest needs on that side of the ball. It would also be nice to add some depth on the edge and at cornerback. On offense, the only real position of need now is at wide receiver. After analyzing the players that remain, here’s a breakdown of how tonight could go.
There are several talented safeties on the board to start round two. Xavier McKinney from Alabama was a projected first-rounder who arguably had the furthest drop of anyone in the draft. Grant Delpit and Antoine Winfield JR. are also both left at the start of the second round. If the Browns front office really likes one of these guys, it could make sense to move up a few spots and grab them. However with two incredible playmakers also left in JK Dobbins and DeAndre Swift, chances are one of the three will be left at pick 41. All three of those safeties are day one contributors, if not starters. Berry will most certainly pick a safety in this draft. The question is will it be on day two or three?
This would be a good spot for the Browns to consider addressing middle linebacker. The departure of both Kirksey and Schobert has opened up a starting job next to Mack Wilson. Even the pick up of veteran B.J. Goodson in free agency, and Sione Taki Taki still in the mix, there will still be a need to find a playmaker to play alongside Mack and fill the void of the losses of Schobert and Kirksey. Two of the highest-rated linebackers left are Zack Baun from Wisconsin and Logan Wilson from Wyoming. If the Browns want either of them, they’ll likely have to use the 41st pick. There is also the possibility they could pair picks 74 and 97 (or a combination of later/future picks) together to jump back up into the second round. Assuming they wait and select a linebacker here at 74, guys like Jacob Phillips (LSU) and Malik Harrison (Ohio St) could both be valid options. It would be very surprised if the Browns head into the 4th round without a new linebacker.
If Cleveland decides to keep this pick, don’t be surprised if they go back to the offensive side of the ball and select a receiver. With such a talented wide outclass, it’s very tempting to use a day two pick on one. Six receivers were drafted in the first round, but several talented players should still be left late in the third round. Antonio Gandy-Golden out of Liberty is a huge target at 6’4″ 225 lbs and would be a nice addition to put on the outside with OBJ, while Jarvis works in the slot.
Both KJ Hamler (Penn St) and K.J. Hill (Ohio St) could also be available. Allowing a talented rookie to learn from Odell and Jarvis is a solid plan for the future. It also solidifies the Browns as one of the top receiving groups in the NFL.
This appears to be an incredibly deep draft class which makes for an exciting second day. Hopefully, Andrew Berry and the company can use this opportunity to pull in a few play-makers for the defense and fill the biggest areas of need.
Enjoy the next two rounds of the NFL draft and stay tuned in to BrownsAccess for the latest news and updates.