Browns Rumors: CLE Was 'Drawn To' Grant Delpit's 'Intelligence and Ball Skills'

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 2, 2020

NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 13: Safety Grant Delpit #7 of the LSU Tigers during the College Football Playoff National Championship game against the Clemson Tigers at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 13, 2020 in New Orleans, Louisiana. LSU defeated Clemson 42 to 25. (Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)
Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns were reportedly drawn to LSU safety Grant Delpit, their second-round pick in the 2020 NFL draft, because of his "intelligence and ball skills" despite his struggles in 2019.

Zac Jackson of The Athletic reported Saturday the Browns view Delpit as an "immediate upgrade at deep safety" who can eventually develop into a "building block" for the team's defense.

The 21-year-old New Orleans native dealt with a high-ankle sprain during the 2019 season and was plagued with tackling issues throughout his final year with the Tigers.

He sounded confident about his ability to fix the problem at the scouting combine in February, telling reporters:

"I get a lot of hate and slander from the media and the experts. I just think that's going to make the glory so much better in the end. They say tackling, that's definitely a thing I can improve on from last year. Got it fixed toward the end of the season. It's all about the approach and not trying to do too much. Just get them on the ground. It's part of football. I know I can do it. I've been doing it my whole life."

The two-time All-American recorded 65 total tackles, seven passes defended, two interceptions and a forced fumble across 14 appearances during LSU's run to a national championship last season.

While he dropped to the second round after being projected as a potential top-10 pick before the 2019 season, he's still got the skill set necessary to become a Pro Bowler.

Delpit should immediately join the Browns' starting lineup as the team's free safety opposite Karl Joseph. Cleveland does have veteran Andrew Sendejo as an insurance policy should the LSU standout struggle initially.

If he bounces back and can build off his 2018 success, he could become one of the draft's best values.