The Cleveland Browns were one of the more active teams in the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft as the team completed two separate trades before finally drafting Phil Taylor from Baylor University.
The Browns came into this draft looking to build on the defensive side of the ball while also looking to acquire an offensive weapon to help the development of Colt McCoy.
Taylor will surely help anchor Cleveland's defensive line, as the former nose tackle will line up next to Athyba Rubin and create piles in the middle on a regular basis.
The Browns originally owned the sixth overall pick before trading all the way down to 27th in a deal with the Atlanta Falcons. The entire trade is as follows:
Cleveland Browns Trade:
2011 First Round Selection, Sixth Overall (Julio Jones)
Cleveland Browns Receive From Atlanta:
27th, 59th (second round) and 124th (fourth round) in 2011, as well as the Falcons’ first and fourth round picks in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Many Browns fans found themselves rejoicing after this selection as the team acquired multiple picks over the course of the next several years. However, Cleveland was not done in the first round and would later exchange their first round selection and a fourth round selection to the Kansas City Chiefs in order to move up six spots and claim Phil Taylor.
Taylor was a typical nose tackle at Baylor and did not compile very impressive statistics as the anchor of the defensive line. Experts around the nation like Taylor because of his motor and his ability to be relentless as well as his overall size.
Taylor will likely be a starter immediately on the Browns defensive line and will likely give Cleveland more options to move Titus Adams or Travis Ivey to defensive end.
Overall Cleveland Browns Draft Grade For Round 1: B
The Browns managed to gain a stockpile of picks for the next two seasons but may have been a little hasty in their decision to trade back up for a 3-4 nose tackle. Taylor should be a successful defensive tackle in the Browns' 4-3 system but will require a significant amount of coaching and development. The Browns also failed to land any sort of wide receiver in Round 1 but have two selections at their disposal in Round 2.