As another April quickly approaches, we are left to ponder the same perplexing conundrum that we face each and every year: What will the Browns do with their first round pick? Just like any other year since the Browns returned the pick is once again in the top 10, #6 overall, and cme with an overwhelming amount of uncertainty.
But, I guess that is to be expected when your currently in year 14 of 5 year rebuilding project. God, I wish that was a joke. Where did I put the booze? And why isn’t it 5 o’clock yet?
So what are the Browns going to do at #6? All signs seem to point towards defense. There is an overwhelming amount of elite defensive talent available in this year’s draft. Combine that with the fact that the Browns are in the middle of a complete defensive oberhaul and you have to think that’s where this pick is headed.
The othe glaring evidence that this might be a defensive pick is the Browns inability to sign a top tier cornerback. The Browns are in desperate need of a legitimate corner to pair with Joe Haden. With that in mind, the most likely pick is probably Alabama cornerback Dee Milliner. Milliner is widely regarded as the top defensive back available and could possible have a higher ceiling than Haden. Together they could potentially make it next to impossible to throw on the Browns. With the current state of the NFL as a passing league, this pick makes even more sense when you really sit down and think about it.
However, thers is the glaring issue of who will be the quarterback of the future that remains unresolved.
The current regime has made it m o secret that they are not very fond of Brandon Weeden. This makes sense. Combine his age along with his underwhelming 2012 season and it is easy to understand their positioning. Weeden did very little to endear himself to anyone either inside or outside the organization. To think the Browns absolutely won’t consider a QB at #6 is being a bit narrow minded.
Should West Virginia QB drop to the browns at #6 it is possible they’d take him. With the numbers he was able to put up in college combined with his absurd performances at the combine and his pro day, it’s hard to see the Browns passing on him. However, not everyone is sold on his potential as a franchise QB. That’s why we’ve seen mock drafts with him being taken somehwere in the 20’s or later. That said, can the Browns afford to lose out on someone with that kind of potential again? Probably not.
That’s not to say the Browns can’t use Smith to their advantage. Both the Cardinals and Bills are in desperate need of a QB and draft immediately following the Browns, #7 and #8 respectively. Could the Browns engage both the Cardinals and Bills in a bidding war against each other in order to jump up one or two spots and take Smith? Again, this seems highly likely, especially if the first five picks work out in the Browns favor. If they can move down two spots, acquire additional picks (especially a 3rd rounder), and stl have a shot at Milliner, then this move is a no brainer.
But, like I said, everything would uave to work out in the Browns favor and when was the last time that happened? 1964?
With all of that said, it feels like Milliner is the pick at #6. He should he the best available player at a position of need for the Browns. If he’s there, they should take him. If not, I still feel like the Browns should focus on defense with Ziggy Ansah, Jarvis Jones, or Barkevious Mingo with a trade down as a legitimate option. Of course, there is still plenty of time between nkw and the draft for the Browns to sign players and drastically alter how all of this playes out. Maybe Smith will be in play come draft day.
We’ll all just have to wait and see.