Cleveland Browns: Collaborative 2018 NFL Mock Draft 2.0

AUBURN, AL - NOVEMBER 25: Carlton Davis (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
AUBURN, AL - NOVEMBER 25: Carlton Davis (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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NORMAN, OK – NOVEMBER 25: Quarterback Baker Mayfield (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images)
NORMAN, OK – NOVEMBER 25: Quarterback Baker Mayfield (Photo by Brett Deering/Getty Images) /

Writer: Christopher Markoch

Round 1: Pick 1: Baker Mayfield, QB, Oklahoma

Around the time of the NFL combine, there were numerous reports linking Mayfield to the Browns. That smoke has dissipated, but that’s what gets me thinking Mayfield is the pick. Many times, it’s the name that’s not being talked about that is the intended target. The Browns brought in former Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan as a player personnel consultant. McCloughan is a huge advocate for Mayfield.

Coincidentally, Mayfield’s physical “measurables” are nearly identical to those of Tyrod Taylor. We may be asking the night of the draft did the Browns make up their mind on Mayfield before trading for Taylor, or the other way around?

Who would I take: Saquon Barkley, RB, Penn State

This is no surprise to anyone who reads DPD. In addition to what Barkley can add to the Browns as a playmaker, he’s a high character guy that, in addition to Myles Garrett, will form a solid foundation going forward. With the additions of Jarvis Landry and Carlos Hyde, the weight of expectations would be lessened, but I don’t think that matters. Committing to a first-round pick is about not looking back in three years wondering why you didn’t pick that player.

Round 1: Pick 4: Bradley Chubb, Edge, NC State

Chubb would be a bookend to last year’s first overall pick Myles Garrett and it creates all kind of possibilities for Gregg Williams’ defense. That may be a temptation that’s too hard to ignore.
Who would I take: Chubb

I believe that if the Browns take a quarterback with the first pick, as expected, the Giants will take Saquon Barkley and the Jets will take either Josh Rosen or Baker Mayfield. This would put Chubb firmly in the Browns lap and he would be hard to pass up. I also strongly believe the Browns would actively consider trading down, but if they make a pick, I like Chubb.

Round 2: Pick 33: Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise State

Vander Esch has been moving up draft boards and I question whether he’ll make it to the second day. If he’s there, I think the Browns will sleep comfortably on Thursday night knowing that their first selection of the second round is already in hand. Vander Esch would be a contributor in sub packages and what will be very compelling to the Browns is his coverage ability.

Who would I take: Vander Esch

If we can find someone to cover a tight end with consistency, I’m all in.

Round 2: Pick 35: Rashad Penny, RB, San Diego State

Like Vander Esch, it’s highly possible that Penny will not be available at #35. However, if he is the Browns will draft Penny with the hope that he will be the lightning to Carlos Hyde’s thunder.

Who I would take: Sony Michel, RB, Georgia

I wouldn’t dislike Penny, but if Michel were available that’s who I would take. With Hyde being 29 by the end of the season, I see Michel as having more of the chance to be an every down back.

Round 2: Pick 64: Carlton Davis, CB, Auburn

With the additions the Browns have made to their secondary, Davis would be a nice addition that could develop and play in some nickel and dime packages. He has NFL size and length.

Who I would take: James Washington, WR, Oklahoma State

Wide receiver might not be a huge need, but Washington is someone who can develop and be an insurance policy if Corey Coleman continues his maddening injury pattern.