The Cleveland Browns and New York Giants announced that in the aftermath of the Odell Beckham Jr. trade the teams will not exchange the draft picks that were an original part of the March 8 trade of Olivier Vernon for Kevin Zeitler.
It seems the Cleveland Browns and New York Giants just can’t quit talking to each other. On Friday, March 8, the Browns traded guard Kevin Zeitler to the Giants for edge rusher Olivier Vernon. The trade also included an exchange of draft picks.
Under the terms of the deal, the Giants would have sent a fourth-round pick (No. 132) in this year’s NFL Draft to the Browns. In exchange, the Browns would have sent the Giants a fifth-round pick (No. 155). Those picks will now stay with their original teams.
That means in the last week, the Giants have received from the Browns:
- Guard Kevin Zeitler
- Safety Jabril Peppers
- The Browns first-round pick in the 2019 draft (#17)
- The Browns third-round pick in the 2019 draft – from New England (#95 overall)
The Browns have received:
- Wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr.
- DE/LB Olivier Vernon
By most accounts, the Browns won the Beckham trade. The Vernon-Zeitler swap may be a split decision. However, what is clear is these are two teams headed in different directions.
The Browns and the Giants had the first and second overall picks in last year’s NFL draft. The Giants passed on drafting the successor to Eli Manning, selecting instead running back Saquon Barkley. Although Barkley had a successful season that led to his being voted NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year (over Baker Mayfield), the Giants exited last season with more questions than answers. With the trades of Vernon and Beckham, those questions are sure to continue.
The Browns were coming off an 0-16 season and used that first pick to draft quarterback Baker Mayfield. Before, and after, the Mayfield pick, general manager John Dorsey has been making clear the rebuild of the Browns was going to be faster, and more aggressive than might have been expected.