After letting Joe Schobert walk in free agency and releasing Christian Kirksey, the Browns will certainly be in the linebacker market this NFL draft. B.J. Goodson was a decent signing, but there is certainly room for improvement. The Browns will be drafting for depth, but a homerun pick could quickly see playing time on Sunday.
The name on my radar now is Malik Harrison, the athletic linebacker from Ohio State. I don’t feel confident Harrison will still be on the board at pick 74, but if he does, he would be a great fit for the Browns. Jordyn Brooks, a linebacker from Texas Tech is another name to watch if Harrison happens to be gone.
Harrison was a top 50 athlete recruit and was a high school quarterback in the Columbus, OH area. After enrolling at Ohio State, Harrison originally wanted to play receiver but made the switch to defense after seeing a better opportunity for playing time.
Harrison was able to play in 12 games as a true freshman playing a position he had never played before. This shows what a tremendous athlete he was, and still is. All Buckeye fans remember his coming out party to end his junior year and the All-Big Ten performance his senior year. Harrison has gotten considerably better each year on the field and has only played linebacker FOUR SEASONS.
Harrison can cover a lot of the field but can be caught off guard with misdirection and play-action, which will improve as he gets reps at the position. If the Browns can land Harrison in the third, he could be an immediate player at the strongside linebacker (SAM) position.