Cleveland Browns: 4 under-the-radar 2021 NFL Draft prospects to watch

Cleveland Browns. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Cleveland Browns. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /
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Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns target Jaelon Darden. 8 Mtsu V North Texas /

2. Jaelon Darden, WR, North Texas

Early on, it looked like the Browns may need a wide receiver early on in the 2021 NFL Draft after the injury and uncertain future of Odell Beckham Jr. They still opt for that, however, if they choose to make Jarvis Landry’s $14 million contract expendable (should he choose not to restructure). However, with the success of Baker Mayfield with the likes of Donovan Peoples-Jones and Rashard Higgins, the Browns may opt to wait until day-three.

North Texas’ Jaelon Darden is one of the more dynamic wide receivers in the nation, bursting onto the scene in 2020. The 5-foot-9 and 174 speedster has posted a gaudy stat line in back-to-back seasons at North Texas. A year ago, Darden racked up 736 yards and 12 touchdowns on 76 catches.

This year Darden made a much bigger impact, catching 74 catches in nine games, tallying nearly 1,200 yards and a whopping 19 touchdowns. A dynamic threat both in the screen game and as a deep threat, Darden would become an instant asset for the Browns, especially if they move on from Landry after the season.

He has a chance to blow up the NFL Scouting Combine as well, putting him even further on the radar of scouts and general manager. He would look great in brown and orange.