Analyst claims Browns landed 'major value' with late-round pick

Field Yates is a believer in Myles Harden, who the Browns landed in Round 7
Myles Harden, Browns
Myles Harden, Browns / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Even without a pick in Round 1, the Cleveland Browns found value throughout the 2024 NFL Draft. From Rounds 2 through 7, they added some necessary depth with players who could develop into long-term starters.

Most of the attention fell on second-round pick Michael Hall, Jr. and third-round selection Zak Zinter but the late rounds also deserve praise. First, it was Steve Smith, Sr. banging the drum for fifth-round receiver Jamari Thrash from Louisville. Smith called him a "chain-mover" and "deep threat." 

Now, Field Yates from ESPN is heaping some praise on a Day 3 pick. Yates recently discussed the draft's top selections and called Harden a "major value," since he went much later than anticipated.

According to Jared Mueller of Dawgs by Nature, Harden the 227th overall selection, was No. 191 on the consensus big board. However, Yates had him even higher than this, ranking him in the top 150 in the class.

"Harden was the 147th player on the board for me, so an 80-spot difference makes this a major value for Cleveland. He had a nose for the football in college, forcing four fumbles and picking off four passes over the past two seasons as a consistent disruptor." — Yates, ESPN

Browns have a logjam at cornerback

Harden isn't known for his top-end speed but the 5-foot-11, 198-pounder is fearless in run support. He didn't spend much time in the slot during his collegiate career but has the tools to be effective in this role.

The only concern for him is the amount of talent surrounding him in the secondary. Cleveland already has Denzel Ward and Martin Emerson who have the boundary positions locked down and Greg Newsome II has excelled in the slot under Jim Schwartz. He also just had the fifth-year option in his rookie deal picked up, keeping him under contract through 2025.

Behind them is Cam Mitchell, a fifth-round pick from 2023 who played well when given the chance as a rookie. Harden also has to contend with Justin Hardee and Tony Brown who are special team's studs.

The path won't be easy but Harden has the talent to succeed — and those who study the game agree.

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