2014 NFL Draft: Moves Browns Could Make
The long wait is almost over. The NFL Draft, which in the new era of the Browns, has become the team’s annual Super Bowl, is Thursday night in New York City.
It’s the first NFL Draft that new general manager Ray Farmer will conduct. How important is the draft for the franchise?
“I think that every draft is important. It’s really the lifeblood of every organization. Adding guys through the draft is an interesting piece to the puzzle. Some guys you take because you realize they’re not going to be ready right away, but they have a greater upside. Other guys you take with the hopes that they’re going to contribute immediately. That being the case, I think that as we look at the draft from our team’s perspective, there are guys that you’re going to want to see contribute right away; there are going to be other guys that we will look to redshirt, in some sense, as far as we’re not looking to throw them out on the field and see what they do right away.”
The Browns own the 4th overall pick in the draft and also will select at the number 26 slot.
The draft holds just round one on Thursday night. Rounds 2 thru 7 are conducted from Friday through Saturday.
Wednesday, Canton was named in a New York Post article as a possible future location.
FOX 8 reached out to Joe Horrigan with the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He said, “The NFL has suggested recently that moving the Draft to other cities in the future might be considered as they look for additional ways to make the draft “bigger and better.” We are pleased that Canton is one of the cities sited in the article.“
For now, all eyes will be on New York City and what happens beginning Thursday night.
When Ray Farmer was asked how many players the Browns would be interested in selecting fourth overall. He was pretty coy with his answer.
“I’m definitely not going to answer that question. We’re going to avoid that one 100 percent. I will tell you that it’s a game. It’s a game of figuring out who you like, where you think you can get those players and use the ammunition that we have to put ourselves in position to take the best players.”
The Mock Drafts that have been conducted over the past several months by media members all over the country point to a few dynamic players. Johnny Manziel, the Texas A & M qb has almost a cult-like following among Browns’ fans but there are concerns about his ability to take shots from bigger, more physical NFL players.
Blake Bortles, the 6’5″ qb from Central Florida has been talked about a lot, as have defensive lineman Jadeveon Clowney of South Carolina, linebacker Kahlil Mack of Buffalo, receiver Sammy Watkins of Clemson, and offensive lineman Greg Robinson, the big tackle from Auburn.
Teddy Bridgewater, the quarterback from Louisville, who may be slipping in the ratings is also an option. Anything is an option. The Browns may try to trade up to make sure they can get the guy they want, or they could even trade down.
The Browns owner, Jimmy Haslam, is a passionate man as witnessed by his quick trigger in firing front office personnel and head coach Rob Chudzinski after just one year. So, what’s it been like with Haslam? Has he placed more pressure on Farmer and his team?
“I don’t feel any pressure. Jimmy’s been more than supportive. He is involved; he is in meetings; he comes around; we keep him up to speed on what we’re doing and why we’re doing it. He’s not a guy that applies pressure. He’s very supportive, and he wants to make sure that we are doing our due diligence in all factors. Inevitably, I would tell you that he’s not a guy that’s going to impede the process. He hired me to do a job, and he’s going to allow me to do it.”
This is one of the deepest drafts in years, so the Browns having 10 draft picks bodes well. If they make the right choices.
FOX 8’s own PJ Ziegler will be in New York City on Thursday for the draft and will bring you LIVE coverage on-air and right here on FOX8.com.