Ranking the biggest draft steals in modern Cleveland Browns history

Who have the Browns stolen in the draft since returning to the NFL?
Cleveland Browns, Andra Davis
Cleveland Browns, Andra Davis / Wesley Hitt/GettyImages
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2. Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia (2002)

There were some hits and some misses for the Browns 2018 NFL Draft. With the first overall pick, the selected Baker Mayfield out of Oklahoma. The quarterback spent four years with the team and did well, but still didn’t turn the franchise around the way he had hoped. 

At No. 4 overall, they took Denzel Ward. The cornerback from Ohio State turned out to be a stud and has been one of the best defensive backs in the NFL. Then at No. 33, they took Austin Corbett from Nevada. The guard didn’t play well for the Browns and was traded during his second season. He turned it around with the Rams and later the Panthers, but it still felt like a waste of pic for Cleveland.

Then there was pick No. 35 which was used on Georgia running back Nick Chubb. Selected after his Georgia teammate, Sony Michel, Chubb turned out to be the best running back in the class. 

A knee injury suffered in 2015 while playing for the Bulldogs might’ve scared some teams off, but the Browns paid more attention to the fact that he was still running hard, and dominating after the surgery. Since coming to the Browns, he’s already climbed to No. 4 on the all-time franchise rushing list with 6, 511 yards and has 48 touchdowns.

Chubb suffered a torn ACL and MCL in Week 2 of the 2023 season, and might not be back to start the 2024 campaign as he recovers from the two surgeries required to repair the knee. 

Cleveland reworked his contract to lower his cap hit for this coming season and added a couple of players to help keep the ground game going until he’s ready to return. When he returns, Chubb will continue to climb that list and has a shot of becoming the No. 2 running back in franchise history behind the legendary Jim Brown. Not bad for the fourth running back that year.