Latest NFL mock draft has Browns taking Ohio State EDGE in Round 1

Could the Cleveland Browns go back to the Ohio State pipeline for their first pick in 2025?
JT Tuimoloau
JT Tuimoloau / Kyle Robertson/Columbus Dispatch / USA

For the first time since 2021, the Cleveland Browns will be making a selection in Round 1 of the 2025 NFL Draft. Or at least, they're expected to since they no longer owe any draft compensation to the Houston Texans from the Deshaun Watson trade.

Despite not having a pick in Round 1 over the past three seasons, the Browns have done well building its roster. General manager Andrew Berry has found talent in the mid-rounds and filled holes with free-agency additions.

It’s been impressive to see how the roster was built despite a premium pick but it will be even more enjoyable to discuss the team’s Round 1 pick again. That's what we’re about to do now thanks to a recent mock draft from Sayre Bedinger of NFL Spin Zone, who has Cleveland taking Ohio State defensive end JT Tuimoloau.

“A team like the Browns prioritizes bringing waves of pass rush and they need guys to continually take pressure off of Myles Garrett on the other side by taking advantage of favorable matchups. Tuimoloau could be a fun fit.” — Bedinger, NFL Spin Zone

Tuimoloau stands 6-foot-4 and 277 pounds. He has 11 sacks in three seasons and seems to be on the verge of breaking out. If that's the case, he could be in line for a leap into Round 1, and might draw some interest from the Browns.

After years of neglecting the Buckeyes, Cleveland is finally showing them some love. They even used their top pick, a Round 2 selection in 2024, on defensive tackle Michael Hall, Jr. Hall didn't fill a major need for 2024 but could be a starter down the road.

The idea would be the same for Tuimoloau if he were selected in 2025. While the end goal would be for him and Garrett to be the long-term starters at defensive end, Cleveland isn't hurting there just yet.

Za’Darius Smith, Alex Wright, and Ogbo Okoronkwo are all under contract through the 2025 season. Perhaps Andrew Berry would be willing to groom Tuimoloau for a year, the way he's set to with Hall.

If so, it could be a great long-term solution even if it doesn't so much to add a first-round splash in 2025.

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