Browns: Top 5 quarterback targets in the 2018 NFL Draft

LOUISVILLE, KY - NOVEMBER 18: Lamar Jackson /
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Yes, the top quarterback for the Browns in the 2018 NFL Draft class is USC’s Sam Darnold. Nothing cute, nothing unexpected, nothing overly surprising. Just the top quarterback option and a player who should be the consensus No. 1 pick. Chalk.

Darnold brings the best of Josh Allen’s and Josh Rosen’s worlds together. He is a top prospect who is at least somewhat pro-ready, but he has a high ceiling that he still has not yet reached.

The NFL Draft community has been talking about Darnold for more than a year. Things really started to take off when Darnold took down the Penn State Nittany Lions with 453 passing yards and five touchdowns in the Rose Bowl in January of 2017.

Darnold, to use a scouting buzzword, has “it” more than any other prospect in this draft class. He is exciting, electric, and just looks the part of a franchise quarterback both on and off the field.

Darnold boasts a solid résumé since taking the reigns for the USC Trojans offense during the 2016 season. Perhaps the most impressive thing, though, is that Darnold would apparently enjoy playing for the Browns, as he told

"“Whenever I come out to go to the NFL, I think I’d be honored to play for any team. It’s been a dream of mine for such a long time to play in the NFL. Any team that would want to give me that opportunity to be a part of their organization, it would mean the world to me.”"

Unlike Rosen, Darnold does not appear to have even an inkling of a character concern. Everything about him just screams of that hunky-dory, blue-collar, “put your head down and work” attitude that is perfect for Cleveland.

Darnold can absolutely benefit from sitting for a year behind a learned veteran quarterback. He has both the skills and work ethic to be a star in the NFL.

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The Browns do not have to get cute with the No. 1 overall selection. Fans and analysts alike already know who the best quarterback fit for the Browns is in this year’s NFL Draft class.

Go with Darnold and start to really turn this Cleveland Browns franchise around.