Can Anyone Save the Cleveland Browns? NFL Draft 2017 First Round Review

The first round of the 2017 NFL Draft was Thursday night, and with the 1st overall pick, the Cleveland Browns are looking to find the player that can finally turn the franchise around. For a team coming off of a 1-15 season, the only place to go is up right? With picks at 1st and 12th, the Browns are hoping they have found the players that can bring this team back to the playoffs for the first time since 2002.

With the First Overall Pick, The Cleveland Browns Select…

garrett-mid-thamel

There was a lot of debate leading up to this, when to most people on the outside it seemed like there was one very obvious choice. Yeah, Cleveland needs a QB. But, they also need better players all over the field, and Myles Garrett is the best player in this draft. When looking at the stats from his three seasons with Texas A&M, it’s easy to see why the defensive end was widely expected to have his name called first on Thursday night, and why that ultimately came true.

Screen Shot 2017-04-27 at 5.40.36 PM

Myles Garrett College Stats (via http://www.footballdb.com/college-football/players/myles-garrett-garre0040)

In addition to Garrett, the Browns added Jabrill Peppers, who plays pretty much every position but is listed as a safety. While Peppers was a star on a Michigan team that finished 10-3, we’ve seen many times where this style of play does not translate well from college to the NFL. He is a player who is good at a lot of things, but not great at anything. Having a utility player like that would benefit a lot of teams, but I won’t be surprised at all if Cleveland finds a way to mess this up (see Terrelle Pryor).

One major problem the Browns didn’t solve in the first round was their need for a starting quarterback. After the Bears traded up to draft Trubisky at 2nd, the Browns were left without a solution (even though Deshaun Watson is probably the most talented QB in this draft class). With Watson now taken by Houston, the Browns must be hoping that Cody Kessler can make some noise after being drafted in the 3rd round last year or (if he even hangs around) see if Brock Osweiler can earn a penny of that 4-year, $72 million contract. Both of these seem nearly impossible, so unless they can make a trade (Jimmy G?) it looks like the Browns and their fans could be in for another long season.

Draft Impressions

1. The Bears got desperate. Without Cutler and no young quarterback waiting to take over the team, the Bears gave up too much for a player who had 1 win versus ranked opponents in his college career.

2. Browns actually made the right choices. Garrett will provide a boost to the defensive side of the ball immediately. Peppers brings special teams skill to the table as a returner, but may also turn into a capable safety in the league.

3. The 49ers got a steal when they selected Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster 31st overall, a player many thought would be taken early in the round.

4. Hot Take: The best QB from this draft will be DeShone Kizer (I’m also a Notre Dame fan and slightly biased, but he’s the only reason why they even won 4 games last year).

5. Not-So-Hot Take: Mitchell Trubisky will be another quarterback taken early in the first round who ends up being a bust (see Jared Goff, RGIII, Ryan Leaf).

Also, not draft related, but I’m really excited to see Marshawn Lynch in a Raiders uniform. He’s been almost unstoppable throughout his career, and even at 31, I think he’ll be able to come back from a year of retirement and pick up where he left off. If the key players stay healthy, the Raiders will win the AFC West and have a real shot at making it to the Super Bowl.

Twitter Reactions

There was one tweet that really blew up though…

What’s the lesson here? When you’re about to become a professional athlete, maybe you should delete some of your old tweets from high school, no matter how much you love something.

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