What will the Browns do when they are on the clock in the 2013 NFL Draft?
Mike Cairns, newsnet5.com
11:57 AM, Apr 24, 2013
5:01 PM, Apr 24, 2013
CLEVELAND - The Cleveland Browns you are on the clock - well, not yet actually, but if all goes as scheduled, the Browns will have the sixth pick in the first round on Thursday night.
The Browns war room will have all the major players, Jimmy Haslam, Joe Banner, Mike Lombardi, among the five key personnel that will make the final call to pick or trade on draft night.
Browns CEO Joe Banner said this week, "It is highly likely we will trade the pick while we are on the clock, not before or after." He went on to say, "We have identified the teams below us that are interested in trading up and have had some preliminary discussions."
Browns fans have talked about what the team should do with the pick for weeks. It has actually become a right of passion for Browns fans beginning the day after the team's annual elimination from playoff competition.
Banner and Lombardi both admit this draft is defensive heavy and there is no clear cut overall number one pick hanging out there like last year with Andrew Luck. Actually, the first two picks could be offensive lineman which would be almost unheard of. You would have to go back to 2008 when the Miami Dolphins took Jake Long as the number overall pick.
The Browns are toying with a number of names, but the one that keeps coming to the top is Dee Miliner, the cover corner from Alabama. If the top two teams take offensive lineman as predicted by most mock drafts the Oakland Raiders will hold the key to the Browns draft night.
The mocks predict that Oakland will most likely take a defensive tackle with the number three pick, but there are rumblings they like Milliner as well if the Raiders take the 'Bama corner I think the Browns will be on the phone looking for a trade.
Miliner has been identified as the number one player on the Browns draft board. Miliner has speed, size, quickness, technique and ball skills, all the attributes of a number one corner and teamed with Joe Haden and reunited with friend Trent Richardson this is a perfect pick.
Now when was the last time the Browns and perfect were mentioned in the same sentence. It's draft night folks - expect the unexpected. It's the Browns, so expect the unexpected.
Joe Banner said this week the team has identified "18-20 players as first round picks" and he also admitted "there is a lot of pressure to get this draft right."
I think that's the understatement of the year. If Milliner is not there, I would not be surprised if the Browns traded down or even traded for a veteran player from another team.
I have spoke with several draft experts over the past week and there are some other names that are high on the Browns draft board and could be a potential pick at number six.
Dion Jordan- OLB Oregon: Jordan is a dynamic pass rusher with elite speed and would also make a terrific linebacker in the 3-4 defense. Experts think he will be chosen by former college coach Chip Kelly and the Eagles at number four.
Chance Warmack- OG Alabama: Warmack is projected as the number one guard in the draft and the first to go off the board. Although not a sexy pick, with the Browns tackle spots occupied by Thomas and Schwartz, Warmack could complete an offensive line that Trent Richardson could be very productive behind.
Jarvis Jones- OLB Georgia: Jones is another name I hear a lot from the draftnicks. If Jordan is not there, Jones could be a great fit for the Browns 3-4 defense. Jones had 28 sacks the past two years in the SEC and would be an instant starter for the Browns.
E.J Manuel- QB Florida St.: Ok hold your horses, the Browns aren't going to take a quarterback with the sixth pick and yes, Geno Smith is there, but the guys I have talked to have Manuel as the number one rated guy with Tyler Wilson second and Smith third. Manuel has been compared to Cam Newton, the Browns like him a lot and hope he is still around in the later rounds, but he may not make it past the end of the first and early second which could force the Browns' hand.
This should give you something to think about before the clock starts ticking for the Browns on Thursday night. I know a lot of things can happen and I have seen this movie too many times before.
Thursday's draft will say a lot about how well Banner and Lombardi are working together, the pressure to get it right is huge, and whether that means pick or trade the sixth pick is yet to be seen.
Follow Mike Cairns on Twitter on draft night at Browns headquarters