Expect the Browns to sit out this year’s supplemental draft
By Thomas Moore
The NFL will hold its annual Supplemental Draft on July 12, but don’t expect the Cleveland Browns to be participants.
The mid-summer NFL Supplemental Draft, which is open to players who have seen their drat status change since the 2017 NFL Draft, has held little appeal to teams in recent years. The last player to be selected came in 2015, when the St. Louis Rams used a fifth-round pick to select Clemson offensive lineman Isaiah Battle, who is no longer with the team. (And the Rams are no longer in St. Louis, for that matter.)
Last year six players were eligible and none were selected; this year the list is down to two players, according to NFL.com – Tavares Bingham, a defensive lineman from Georgia Military College, and Marques Rodgers, a running back from Western New Mexico.
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The 5-foot-10 and 173-pound Rodgers was last seen on the football field in 2015, when he gained 1,283 rushing yards and scored 10 touchdowns, while adding 61 receptions.
That brought his two-year collegiate total for the Mustangs, who are members of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, to 2,579 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns.
Academic problems led to him being ineligible in 2016, so while the Browns value players who produced at a high level in college, they also value players who are dependable, meaning that Rodgers holds little appeal to the team.
Bingham, who is 6-foot-4 and 290 pounds, spent two seasons (one a redshirt year) at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College before transferring to Georgia Military College. Having exhausted his junior college eligibility, and facing academic issues (according to NFL.com) that precluded him from playing at a four-college program, Bingham was left with no choice but to opt for the Supplemental Draft.
After spending five draft picks on defensive linemen in the past two drafts, it would be extremely surprising to see the Browns spend a pick on a player who competed at such a low level in college.
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It is a pleasant fantasy to think the Browns could find their next franchise quarterback, the way they did with Bernie Kosar in 1985, or a one-year wonder like Josh Gordon (2012 Supplemental Draft) in this year’s group, but the reality is that it’s not going to happen.