Latest Mel Kiper mock has Dexter Lawrence joining Cleveland Browns
ESPN draft expert Mel Kiper, Jr. released his latest mock draft on Monday and he had the Cleveland Browns going with Clemson defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence at No. 17
There could be a new favorite in the clubhouse for the Cleveland Browns at No. 17. For the past couple of weeks, many mock drafts had them selecting Mississippi State defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons with their first-round pick. That’s no longer the case as Simmons, unfortunately, suffered a torn ACL while training for the draft.
Simmons surely will fall out of the first round now, but that doesn’t mean the Browns won’t still be adding some beef to their D-line. And according to Mel Kiper, Jr. of ESPN, they will be adding a whole lot of beef.
The sports network’s most recognizable draft guru released a new mock draft on Monday and he has the Browns selecting Clemson nose tackle Dexter Lawrence. In the piece — which is available through a subscription on ESPN Insider — Kiper alludes to the injury to Simmons, saying he too originally had the Mississippi State product as the top choice for Cleveland.
Lawrence flashed some pass rush potential as a freshman when he recorded 6.5 sacks, but has never recaptured that kind of production in the passing game. He’s still proven to be a talented player as the 6-foot-5, 340-pound underclassman is a monster when it comes to stuffing the run.
Despite being expected to test well leading up to the draft, Lawrence will have some questions to answer as well. He was suspended during the Tigers playoff run after reportedly failing a drug test.
Lawrence has come out and said he was shocked by the news of a failed test, unaware of what the supplement was that triggered the suspension. As long as he can convince teams this was an isolated mistake, he should have no problem being a day one pick.