Now that the collegiate all-star games are complete the Browns can begin to build their big board. It wont be completed until after free agency and the scouting combine, but make no mistake that a preliminary list is being built.
Good teams build their big boards based on talent and not need. If the Browns follow suit, then they will build player rankings on statistics, video and interviews.
For our purposes, we will stick to the needs of the Browns and the direction that would most help the roster. There are also positions repeated throughout the seven rounds. This is to reflect the different options available if they do not select that position earlier.
Normally, teams have players on their big board that they have no chance of drafting but the Browns are in a unique position. They can literally draft anyone available because there is no clear cut first overall pick.
The board does not stop in the first round, however. Teams have boards that span through all seven rounds and well into the undrafted free agent pool.
Here is my seven-round big board for the Browns with different options. Each round presents different opportunities and the Browns need to make the most of them.
Let’s dive in.
Teddy Bridgewater (QB, Louisville) 6’2”, 205 lbs
If the Houston Texans decide that they want to keep Johnny Manziel in the state of Texas then the Browns need to jump on quarterback Teddy Bridgewater.
Bridgewater’s stock is suffering from everyone on earth over-analyzing him. He has been the best quarterback available in this draft for a full year and that has not changed.
Johnny Manziel (QB, Texas A&M) 6’0”, 210 lbs
If the Texans do what everyone on earth thinks they will do and draft Bridgewater, Manziel should be the fall back option.
Despite his lack of ideal height, his playmaking ability is undeniable. He is the ultimate boom or bust player in this draft.
Jadeveon Clowney (DE, South Carolina) 6’5”, 274 lbs
Sammy Watkins (WR, South Clemson) 6’1”, 205 lbs
C.J. Mosley (LB, Alabama) 6’2”, 232 lbs
Mike Evans (WR, Texas A&M) 6’5”, 225 lbs
Zack Martin (OT/G, Notre Dame) 6’4”, 305 lbs
Marqise Lee (WR, USC) 6’0”, 195 lbs
David Yankey (G, Stanford) 6’5”, 314 lbs
Kelvin Benjamin (WR, Florida State) 6’5”, 235 lbs
Allen Robinson (WR, Penn State) 6’3”, 210 lbs
If the Browns do not snag a playmaker to put opposite Josh Gordon in the first round of the draft they need to get one here. Robinson has first round potential and if he slips to this spot he is an easy pick.
Chris Borland (ILB, Wisconsin) 6’0”, 245 lbs
Borland wowed scouts at the Senior Bowl with his nose for the ball and big play potential. When you watch Wisconsin film he jumps out on every defensive play. The Browns could plug him in for the next five to seven years.
Carlos Hyde (RB, Ohio State) 6’0”, 235 lbs
Jimmy Garoppolo (QB, EIU) 6’2”, 219 lbs
Shayne Skov (ILB, Stanford) 6’2”, 245 lbs
Stanley Jean-Baptiste (CB, Nebraska) 6’3”, 215 lbs
The Browns need to draft a cornerback who can slip into the second cornerback role. This would move Buster Skrine back inside to nickelback. Jean-Baptiste was another player who wowed at the Senior Bowl and looks like one of the best corners in the draft.
Bishop Sankey (RB, Washington) 5’10”, 203 lbs
Dakota Dozier (G, Furman) 6’4”, 312 lbs
Terrance Mitchell (CB, Oregon) 6’0”, 190 lbs
Jack Mewhort (G/T, Ohio State) 6’6”, 306 lbs
Terrence Brooks (FS, Florida State) 5’11”, 197 lbs
Even if the Browns do not let safety T.J. Ward walk away, they will still need to add some depth at the position. Depending on whom you ask, Brooks is a top 100 pick and the Browns might be able to snag him just outside that mark.
Keith McGill (CB, Utah) 6’3”, 214 lbs
Lamin Barrow (ILB, LSU) 6’1”, 229 lbs
Jaylen Watkins (CB, Florida) 6’0”, 194 lbs
Mike Davis (WR, Texas) 6’0”, 193 lbs
Dri Archer (RB/WR, Kent State) 5’8”, 175 lbs
This is the spot the Browns can take a gamble and try to snag some interesting playmakers. Not only is Archer a kid who played in northeast Ohio but also he’s a scary weapon with game-breaking speed. A creative offensive mind can find a spot to use this young man.
Bryan Stork (C, Florida State) 6’4”, 306 lbs
James Wilder Jr. (RB, Florida State) 6’1”, 229 lbs
Rashaad Reynolds (CB, Oregon State) 5’11”, 187 lbs
Jon Halapio (G, UCLA) 6’4”, 320 lbs
Antonio Andrews (RB, Western Kentucky) 5’10”, 225 lbs
One of the biggest winners from the Senior Bowl was Antonio Andrews. He showed speed, burst and the vision needed to break big plays from the backfield. He has high top end speed and could be a late-round steal.
Max Bullough (ILB, Michigan State) 6’3”, 265 lbs
Andrew Jackson (ILB, Western Kentucky) 6’1”, 259 lbs
Trey Millard (FB, Oklahoma) 6’2”, 253 lbs
Matt Hazel (WR, Coastal Carolina) 6’1”, 196 lbs
Hazel is a project wide receiver who could have really helped his draft stock in the East-West Shrine game but failed to do so. Now he will have to try and make a squad from the seventh round. He has the raw potential to do it.
James Gayle (DE, Virginia Tech) 6’4”, 255 lbs
Corey Linsley (C, Ohio State) 6’3”, 297 lbs
Anthony Fera (K, Texas) 6’1”, 218 lbs