Cleveland Browns: Top 20 All-Time first-round draft picks

Randy Gurzi
CLEVELAND - NOVEMBER 25: Offensive lineman Joe Thomas #73 of the Cleveland Browns talks with teammates prior to a game against the Houston Texans at Cleveland Browns Stadium on November 25, 2007 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Browns defeated the Texans 27-17. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND - NOVEMBER 25: Offensive lineman Joe Thomas #73 of the Cleveland Browns talks with teammates prior to a game against the Houston Texans at Cleveland Browns Stadium on November 25, 2007 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Browns defeated the Texans 27-17. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images) /
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Cleveland Browns
KNOXVILLE, TN – 1983: Hall of Fame football player Doug Atkins poses for a photo in front of Neyland Stadium in 1983 in Knoxville, Tennessee. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/Getty Images) /

18. player. 839. Scouting Report. DE, Tennessee. 1953 (No. 11). DougAtkins. Pick Analysis

Cleveland Browns top first-round draft picks All-Time No. 18: Doug Atkins, DE, Tennessee

The next player we look at will be a controversial one for sure. Doug Atkins was the No. 11 overall pick in 1953 out of Tennessee and ended up being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. The problem is, Atkins only played 20 career games with the Browns, so he was a great pick by them but spent more time with the Bears.

After just two seasons, Cleveland shipped him off to Chicago where he became part of a dominant Bears team.

Atkins joined the Bears in 1955 and played there until 1966. He finished his career by playing three seasons with the New Orleans Saints and even had his number 81 retired by them. But his best seasons came in Chicago where he made the Pro Bowl eight times and was a First-Team All-Pro in 1963. He made the Second-Team All-Pro six times, including once for New Orleans.

If that wasn’t enough, he was a member of the NFL 1960s All-Decade-Team and made the NFL 100th Anniversary All-Time Team. Cleveland surely lost the trade when they moved on from Atkins, but this still was a great pick by them as they chose a stud. If he had been kept by the Browns, he would have been a top-10 pick, but they kind of messed things up by moving on too quickly.

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