Assuming Cleveland Browns general manager John Dorsey and head coach Freddie Kitchens were never fired, what would have happened during the first round on draft night?
It’s the evening of Thursday, April 23 and Cleveland Browns general manager John Dorsey is feverishly working the phones. Dorsey already secured his left tackle in Trent Williams the day before, as he traded away a second round pick in 2021 to Washington.
Freddie Kitchens is pounding the table to stay at No. 10 overall to select the best right tackle available, and his favorite is from his alma mater in Jedrick Wills from Alabama. He does not want to go into next season with Chris Hubbard back at right tackle. And after failing to sign anyone at the position in free agency, Kitchens is all in on drafting one.
Dorsey is in love with Clemson linebacker Isiah Simmons, as he views him as one of the best defensive playmakers in this draft class and desperately wants to add him to this roster, which includes newly signed free agent defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.
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Dorsey thinks that the offensive talent is already on the roster and it needs Kitchens to bring the best out of them. He has fully turned his attention to the defense this offseason. In addition to adding Clowney, he also signed linebacker Blake Martinez, corner Bashaud Breeland and safety Vonn Bell.
But it’s Simmons that Dorsey needs to get on this night. It has been clear that Cleveland would need to move up from No. 10 overall to get him. Both Arizona and Jacksonville are high on him and Dorsey, Alonzo Hightsmith and Elliott Wolf know it.
Wolf gets off the phone with Carolina. He thinks he has a deal. Carolina wants either Derrick Brown or Javon Kinlaw and they believe they can get one of them at No. 10. In return, however, the Panthers want the Browns second round pick.
After much debate, Dorsey gives in. He wants Simmons. He instructs Wolf to call Carolina back to make the deal. The Browns get their guy. Defensive coordinator Steve Wilks can’t believe they pulled it off and is jumping up and down in his basement while he’s on the conference call.
Kitchens is in his east-side house hemming and hawing. He knows they needed a tackle on offense and now they don’t even have a second round pick to get one. And knowing that either Wyatt Teller or Drew Forbes would be starting at right guard, Kitchens really wanted a solid tackle to play along side them.
Maybe they can sign a veteran tackle or pick up a steal in the third round. But during the night of the first round, Dorsey gets his guy while Kitchens does not.