1. Ezra Cleveland, OT, Boise State
There’s very little chance the Cleveland Browns use the No. 10 overall pick on anything other than a left tackle. Since Joe Thomas opted to retire following the 2017 season, this has been a position of need and they have tried slapping a band-aid on it — to no avail.
First, it was undrafted rookie Desmond Harrison who wasn’t the answer. After eight games, he was replaced by Greg Robinson who at least played better but still didn’t seem to be the long-term guy. Cleveland agreed as they gave him a one-year deal to prove himself in 2019.
Robinson ended up struggling mightily and is now facing jail-time for trying to smuggle marijuana across the border. Even before he did that, it was well known he wasn’t coming back to the Browns.
Thankfully, there should be some solid options at No. 10 overall. The top two are Tristan Wirfs and Andrew Thomas, who would be plug and play starters. Jedrick Wills is another option although he doesn’t have experience at left tackle — Wirfs has some, but at least it’s more than Wills.
What they can’t do is reach for a player, which is what they would be doing by going after Ezra Cleveland from Boise State. While he’s a solid prospect, he’s not as pro-ready as Wirfs or Thomas. He will need some time to turn into a solid starter and this Cleveland offense is built to compete now, not in a couple of years.
With that being the case, Cleveland is a player they need to avoid taking — especially at No. 10 overall.