NFL Combine: Three Browns Targets Impress
With the NFL Combine coming to a close we have a lot of new information about prospects. For the Cleveland Browns analysts now know more than they did before. The key to Combine information is that it should be used for two, and only two purposes: 1) Confirm what was seen on film or 2) Send you back to the film. Either the NFL Combine confirmed what teams and analysts believe or they either under or over performed what was seen on film originally. If it is the later, return to the film to see if you missed anything.
Film always wins, or it should, for winning teams. A player that can run really fast in a straight line but is always burned on film is not football fast. They are track fast. A player who looks quick on film and makes plays but can’t run a fast 40 time plays with good football speed. Joe Haden “disappointed” when he ran 4.52 in the 40, his speed hasn’t been questioned often in the NFL.
Given all of that, it doesn’t mean that there were not players that impressed. The Browns are likely to target a few of those players and we want to highlight three of them here:
Kevin White – WR
Many analysts actually had White rated #1 at the wide receiver position. They saw a player that still had some upside but showed good route running, hands and speed. White may have officially taken over for Amari Cooper among most at the top of the receiver group.
White ran an impressive 4.35 in the 40, tied for 2nd, along with benching 225 pounds 23 times, tied for the best while also having the one of the best 10 yard time. Measuring in at 6’2.5″ and 215 pounds, White showed the ability to be the #1 receiver that the Browns need. He can beat teams deep, beat the press as well as run every route. There is little that White cannot do and he provide it a the NFL Combine.
Eli Harold – OLB
Harold was considered at least a 2nd round pick prior to the NFL Combine. His film at Virginia was impressive but the talent around him was somewhat limited. Harold played defensive end in the Cavaliers 4-3 defense. His 6’3″ 247 pound frame fits perfectly as an outside linebacker in the 3-4 the Browns run. He could bulk up to play end in the 4–3 as well.
Harold’s 4.6 40 yard dash, faster than most of the running backs, paired with his 7.07 Three Cone Drill, tied for 2nd among all that tested as defensive linemen, projects pretty well outside in the 3-4. He showed he can run with tight ends and receivers. His quick first step is impressive on film which should translate to the NFL. He didn’t participate in the Bench Press which could create some concerns about his ability to hold the edge against the run.
Clive Walford – TE
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The Browns have a need at the tight end position and besides Maxx Williams there were a lot of questions. Williams didn’t disappoint but Walford showed that maybe there are two tight ends that could impact the Browns in the 1st or 2nd rounds. Walford, the Miami product, stood at almost 6’4″ and 251 pounds. He ran 4.79 in the 40, just .01 behind Williams, while also jumping 10 feet in the broad jump.
Walford was expected to put on a good show but impressed even more. Yet he showed even more than expected. His hands, somewhat suspect on film, showed well when he was focused. During games that focus lacked but he showed he is able to do it and will need to continue to show that in all workouts between now in the draft. Walford also showed that he will be able to hold blocks in the NFL with 20 Bench Presses of the 225 pound weight. Walford showed he is the all around tight end a running team like the Browns need.
What Browns target impressed you at the NFL Combine?