With 2 months left until the 2020 NFL draft, the Cleveland Browns address their glaring needs in this updated, complete 7-round mock draft.
The Cleveland Browns head into this year’s draft with specific, obvious needs. They have a clear issue on the offensive line that includes both tackles and right guard. All three positions were a major concern for the entirety of the 2019 season and were certainly part of the reason the offense struggled so mightily.
Cleveland’s front office will surely look to fill the voids via free agency and the draft. The draft is often friendlier to organizations because you do not have to pay a veteran a lofty contract. Especially with a team like the Browns loaded with skill talent, they need to save money to pay those players when their contracts expire.
Another area of concern, outside of the O-line, is at safety. With Damarious Randall not signed back yet, and Morgan Burnett aging and coming off a brutal Achilles injury, the safety position is wide open. Look for an early to mid-round selection to help fill that void.
Another need that that is apparent but less severe would include linebacker. The linebacker room is a bit of a mystery for several reasons. First, the team’s defensive captain and tackle leader Joe Schobert has not been extended yet so his future with the team is unknown.
His departure would surely leave a hole to be filled. Secondly, the Browns have two young linebackers who are definitely promising but unproven. Mack Wilson had a great rookie year, but needs to show improvement, and Sione Takitaki did not see the field much until late in the season.
Lastly, Cleveland could use some defensive line depth. The unit is very top-heavy. The talent among the starting front four is far greater than the reserves, and productivity dips when the starters need a breather. Look for some depth added in April’s draft.
Of course, there are scenarios when players fall and the team will go with the best player available for the value of the pick, but in this mock, the picks will align with the needs of the team as a few surprise names fall to the Cleveland Browns.
Round 1, Pick 10: Andrew Thomas, Offensive Tackle, Georgia
The Browns fill their most glaring void with their first pick. At No. 10, Cleveland selects Andrew Thomas from Georgia. It is likely that OT Jedrick Wills Jr. from Alabama will be gone before the Browns’ selection, so they will choose between Tristan Wirfs from Iowa or Thomas.
More from Dawg Pound Daily
- Might Cleveland Browns fans turn against Baker Mayfield?about 17 hours ago
- Countdown to 2020: Best Cleveland Browns player to wear No. 70about 19 hours ago
- 3 Running back combinations similar to Cleveland Browns Nick Chubb, Kareem Huntabout 21 hours ago
- 5 teams who may call the Cleveland Browns about David Njoku1 day ago
- Cleveland Browns News: Cowboys interested in trading for David Njoku1 day ago
Here, the Browns take Thomas. He played left tackle in college while Wirfs played right. Although Wirfs could surely be able to switch sides, Thomas is a true plug-and-play.
Listed at 6-foot-5 and 320 pounds, Thomas is a massive body to protect quarterback Baker Mayfield’s blindside.
Playing in the SEC, Thomas has been tested by many NFL caliber players. At Georgia, Thomas played in an offense that ran the ball consistently for running back D’andre Swift.
The Browns could take a variety of other impressive players at10th overall, but passing on a cornerstone offensive tackle would be a huge mistake. In the NFL, good teams are made with great offensive and defensive lines. Cleveland will find their left tackle for years to come. This is a great start to rebuilding the line.
Round 2, Pick 41: Grant Delpit, Safety, LSU
The Browns get another great player in another position of need here at 41. There is a chance that Delpit may not be here at pick 41 but if he is, the Browns should definitely select him — and in this mock, he just so happened to be on the board still.
Grant Delpit from LSU won this year’s Jim Thorpe Award for the nation’s best defensive back. He has also been selected as an All-American twice. Delpit is a tremendous athlete that is looking to put up large numbers at the NFL combine.
The Browns’ secondary desperately needs safety help. Listed at 6’3 and 203 pounds, Delpit is a big body roaming the secondary. His height will help him and the Browns defend tight ends in the middle of the field and red zone, which they have struggled to do for a few years.
He has excellent ball hawk instincts and is very good at reading the quarterback’s eyes. The LSU product is also not afraid to make a tackle downhill, although he did take a few bad angles this past year resulting in ugly missed tackles. He will surely have to work on his angles to adjust to the speed of the NFL.
The Browns should be thrilled to have Thomas and Delpit through two rounds. Two of the best players in their respective positions, while also filling Cleveland’s biggest needs is a great way to start the draft.
Round 3, Pick 74: Malik Harrison, linebacker, OSU
Cleveland gets a steal here at pick 74. Malik Harrison is a very skilled linebacker from The Ohio State University. Harrison played all four years at Ohio State, and kept getting better each season. He's excellent in the run game which is something the Browns have been miserable in the last two seasons.
He's also excellent with his vision and scraping to fill the hole. He can blow up the lead block and still make the play. He would likely be the middle linebacker for the Browns although he could play any of the three spots. Cleveland’s defense would get instantly better with the addition of Harrison.
Ohio State Buckeye players have been very successful recently in the NFL and it does not take them long to do it. Examples include Nick Bosa, Joey Bosa, Marshon Lattimore, Malik Hooker, Zeke Elliot, Terry McLauren, our very own Denzel Ward, and others. The Browns would be smart to add another established Buckeye to their defense.
Look for the run defense to be better with Harrison in the middle. If the Browns extend Schobert’s contract, the linebacker corps would be a major strength. Without Schobert, they would be losing a great player, but would be restarting with a bunch of young and developing star backers for much cheaper contracts.
Round 3, Pick 90: Tyler Biadasz, Interior OL, Wisconsin
The Cleveland Browns get pick number 90 from the Houston Texans as a result of the Duke Johnson trade. Because Johnson was active for 10 games, the pick went from a 4th round pick to a 3rd. With this selection, the Browns land Tyler Biadasz.
While he played center for Wisconsin, he is capable of playing any of the three interior line spots and the Browns will use him at right guard. Biadasz cleared lanes for Jonathon Taylor for three years while starting for the Badgers. He has excellent vision and is powerful when run blocking.
Wisconsin Badgers are probably the best college program for producing quality NFL linemen. Travis Frederick, Rob Havenstein, Ricky Wagner, former Brown standout Kevin Zeitler, Ryan Ramczyk, and Browns’ legend Joe Thomas all played line for Wisconsin.
With Bill Callahan joining the Browns’ staff and being one of if not the best line coach in the league, Biadasz can definitely develop into a solid starter for the Browns.
The Browns used several players at right guard this past season, and none worked. There was no consistency or trust in the unit. Mayfield seemed impatient and ready to flee the pocket. Adding Thomas and Biadasz to the Browns’ line is going to have an immensely positive impact on the offense.
Round 4, Pick 105: Darnay Holmes, Cornerback, UCLA
The Browns go with their first depth add in the 2020 draft. Darnay Holmes from UCLA adds great depth to the cornerback’s room. Holmes was a former five-star recruit coming out of high school. He played for three years at UCLA before declaring for this year’s draft.
Holmes can tackle very well in space which is something our other corners, Denzel Ward and Greedy Williams struggle to do. Holmes would be utilized in the slot and when the Browns go to five defensive backs.
This past year, the slot corner was typically T.J. Carrie. He had decent stretches during the year, but for the most part, was ineffective. Adding Holmes and allowing him to learn behind Ward would be a great opportunity for him. He could develop into a very solid slot corner.
Holmes is quick and fast which is tremendously important for the slot position. On too many occasions, the corners for Cleveland were beaten on crossing routes, particularly on play-action. Holmes can close gaps and eliminate separation.
Holmes would be a great value add here in the fourth round and would help solidify a talented group of young corners. Late rounds in the draft are all about finding hidden talent and good depth, and Cleveland gets a great late add in Holmes.
Round 6, Pick 167: Jordan Fuller, Safety, Ohio State University
In the 6th round, the Browns get another safety to add competition and depth to their void. Jordan Fuller from The Ohio State University falls to pick 167 for Cleveland. Fuller is a very smart player. While he does not have the most speed or athleticism, he uses great anticipation and angles to make plays.
He's a good tackler and is always in the right spot when you need him to be. Fuller was a team captain for the Buckeyes in 2019 and was a great leader for the team. He may not make the big, highlight level play that catches people’s eye, but Fuller is a reliable and mature presence to have in your defensive backfield. Another Buckeye to excel in the NFL.
Round 7, Pick 221: Mike Panasiuk, Defensive Tackle, Michigan State University
In the 7th Round, Cleveland attempts to find late, interior defensive line depth. The Browns select, Mike Panasiuk with the 221st pick. Panasiuk played at Michigan State University all four years while starting his junior and senior seasons.
Listed at 6’4 and 300 pounds, Panasiuk is a massive body that can fill run lanes. The Browns have two very solid starting defensive tackles but lack any true backups. Panasiuk is a guy that can come fill in for run-stop situations.
He had nine tackles for loss this past season. He is extremely powerful and can use leverage to blow up the offensive line. The Browns desperately need a run-stopping DT and hope Panasiuk can develop into a solid reserve.
The Cleveland Browns get a great package of players in the 2020 NFL draft. While there may not be any big names or flashy picks, this is the kind of draft the Browns needed. The team gets much better in positions of need and will be much better on the offensive line and defensive backfield.