Andrew Berry discusses Browns draft strategy

New York Jets v Cleveland Browns
New York Jets v Cleveland Browns / Nick Cammett/GettyImages

Andrew Berry is a rather tight-lipped general manager but he still does give out some good information when discussing his plans for the Cleveland Browns. That was the case this weekend when he met with the media for his annual pre-draft session.

Berry spoke on several topics, including his expectations for rookies as well as his thinking behind the move to bring in Elijah Moore.

As for the incoming class of rookies, Berry said you have to be thinking about the present as well as the future when making selections. He then added that he doesn't believe they'll be counting on anyone from this class to contribute right away.

"Ideally, you want to be in a position as a roster where you’re not relying on rookies to have major roles... We really want to make sure that as we’re in this lifecycle of the team, we’re in a position where younger players can maybe intergrade into the NFL and develop in the NFL at maybe more of an appropriate pace."


In the past, this hasn't truly been the case. Jedrick Wills was the first player Berry ever drafted and he had to be a day-one starter — which was the same for Greg Newsome II in 2021. However, since making the decision to trade for Deshaun Watson, the Browns have had to switch up their strategy — not having a pick in Round 1 will do that.

Fortunately, they've done a great job building their roster and shouldn't have to rely on any rookies right away.

Having said that, injuries do happen and that was the case in 2022. Cleveland had to turn to Martin Emerson, who was their first pick at No. 68 overall, but thankfully he was up to the task. Still, Berry seems to prefer bringing their younger players along slowly.

Why the Browns went adfter Elijah Moore

Without a pick in Round 1, the Browns decided to get creative this offseason. They used their first pick, which was originally No. 42 overall, in a trade to land Elijah Moore. They wound up with Moore and the No. 74 pick in the draft, essentially dropping back 32 picks for a two-year pro with a ton of potential.

In addition to the sheer speed he plays with as well as his experience, Moore gives them a very young player. Berry touched on that, saying his age and skill set fit perfectly with what Cleveland needed.

"We saw a guy who was 22-year-old receiver that could separate, had speed, good hands. His skillset would fit a need that we thought we had on the roster. "


Berry added that Moore is still on his rookie deal, which is also huge considering their current cap situation.

Now with the 2023 NFL Draft just days away, it's nearly time to see the rest of this offseason unfold. It's been a solid one so far, and can get better with the right selections this coming weekend.

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