Shocking news: First time in 58 years Cleveland Browns draft two Buckeyes

Rutgers v Ohio State
Rutgers v Ohio State / Ben Jackson/GettyImages

The driving distance between Ohio State University and Cleveland Browns Stadium is just over 140 miles, a two-hour drive. Despite the close proximity of the two locations, the Browns had only drafted a handful of Buckeyes over the past several decades.

On Saturday, they selected two Buckeyes, which hadn't been done since 1965. Cleveland drafted offensive tackle Dawand Jones and later center Luke Wypler on Day 3 of the NFL Draft.

Ohio State has been a traditional powerhouse in college football for years, and some other NFL franchises, like the Pittsburgh Steelers, have been drafting Buckeyes far more often. Considering the success of the Steelers franchise over many years, you'd think a team like the Browns would have read the memo a long time ago.

This whole history of not drafting Buckeyes by the Browns has baffled many Cleveland fans. With these latest two draft picks, maybe this is a sign that the current front office in Berea understands that Ohio State players are pretty good and do well in the NFL.

For the record, the Buckeyes have had nearly 500 players drafted in NFL history. Between 1952 and 1965, the late Paul Brown and founder of the Browns was part of drafting 22 Ohio State players.

It should be noted that Brown had coached Ohio State previously in his career. However, the fact that since then the team only drafted 11 players from the football powerhouse just a hop, skip and a jump down the road is just strange.

In this current draft, at the 111th pick Cleveland took Jones, who is a beast of an offensive lineman weighing in at 385 pounds, and standing at 6-foot-7. The team has needed to draft bigger and stronger athletes in the trenches, and Jones certainly fits that bill.

Later in the day, the Browns selected another offensive lineman in Wypler, a steady and consistent player at the center position. His ability to play well in zone schemes on the offensive line will only make him a more valuable asset for the unit.

To top off the team's selection of two Ohio State players, they went on to sign two more undrafted Buckeyes in free agency, including safety Ronnie Hickman, and cornerback/safety Tanner McCallister. Both players were a big part of the Buckeyes' success this past year.

In a bit of a surprise, Hickman's stock slid and he went undrafted. He was projected, going into the season, to be drafted in the middle rounds.

McCallister led Ohio State with three interceptions this past season after transferring from Oklahoma State. Both he and Hickman will have their work cut out to make the Browns team as most undrafted players don't make the final roster, but they'll at least get a shot.

The last Buckeyes the Browns drafted in the past were defensive tackle Tommy Togiai, who they took in 2021 in the fourth round, and Denzel Ward in Round 1 of the 2018 NFL Draft. Prior to those moves, Cleveland hadn’t drafted a Buckeye player since 2009 when they drafted wide receiver Brian Robiskie. Before that, it was in 2002 when they took tight end, Darnell Sanders.

With these moves over the weekend, Browns fans are likely rejoicing now that they have multiple Buckeyes that are now on the roster. That group includes cornerback Denzel Ward, who has had a solid career in Cleveland.

To think that it’s been 58 years since Cleveland drafted more than one Ohio State player is really just shocking because of how many great Buckeye players have been drafted over the history of the NFL.  Hopefully, this will be the start of something great between the two and the Browns keep drafting Buckeyes.

Next. Browns knock it out of the park with Dawand Jones pick. dark