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Team needs: Cleveland Browns

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Our twice-per-day look at the draft needs for the 32 teams continues with a team that has been to the playoffs only one time since returning to the NFL in 1999.  The fact that their division sent three teams to the playoffs in 2011 will make it even harder to break a streak of nine years without a postseason appearance, and counting.

Quarterback:  Before free agency, when looking at the needs of every team on PFT Live, I said (I think) that the Browns need to make a decision at quarterback.  Either Colt McCoy is the guy, or he isn’t.  Make a decision, and implement it.

The Browns decided to try to get Robert Griffin III.  And they failed.

So now, with McCoy fully undermined, the Browns need to decide whether to try to get someone else or stick with the guy who is, at most, their second choice.  The best move, if they believe in Ryan Tannehill, would be to get him — and to get rid of McCoy.  The wrong move would be to use a second-round or third-round pick on a rookie quarterback, keep McCoy as the starter, and continue to do the dog paddle by the Dawg Pound until the new quarterback is ready to help the team strive for consistent mediocrity.

Our point?  Get a franchise quarterback, or stick with the journeyman you have.  Drafting another quarterback of Christmas-without-the-playoffs-future won’t break the cycle of one journeyman after another.

Tackle:  With Joe Thomas in 2007, the Browns nailed down the most important position on the offensive line for a decade, or longer.  But the other side of the line continues to be a problem.  That’s why it’s no surprise that the Browns have taken a look at Matt Kalil.  With Thomas and Kalil as the bookends, the skill-position players could suddenly look a lot better.

It’s more likely that the Browns will look later in the draft for help on the right side, especially since it’s looking likely that the Vikings will take Kalil at No. 3.

Running back:  Peyton Hillis is gone, and 2010 second-rounder Montarrio Hardesty has been a major disappointment, missing all of his rookie season and rushing for only 266 yards in 2011, with an average of 3.0 yards per carry.  That doesn’t mean the Browns should pounce on Trent Richardson, given that competent running backs can be found in later rounds, or even after the draft ends.

But keep this in mind — new offensive coordinator Brad Childress saw the value of a top-10 workhorse running back in Minnesota, with Adrian Peterson opening up an otherwise subpar offense.  Childress may be lobbying heavily for another high-end tailback like Richardson, who then could make it easier for McCoy (or whichever journeyman quarterback is taking the snaps) to find open receivers.

Receiver:  A pair of second-round picks were devoted to the receiver position three years ago.  One guy, Brian Robiskie, is long gone.  The other, Mohamed Massaquoi, has seen reduced production in each of his three NFL seasons.  Justin Blackmon could be tempting with the fourth overall pick, if the Browns aren’t still haunted by the memories of their third overall pick in 2005.  A mid-round field-stretcher could be a nice complement to promising 2011 draft pick Greg Little, or maybe a high-level guy who is available when the Browns use the Julio Jones first-rounder at No. 22.

Cornerback:  Speaking of No. 22, the Browns could take a chance on Janoris Jenkins with that second first-round pick.  Corey Chavous of DraftNasty.com recently pointed out that Jenkins’ best performances came when he was paired with Joe Haden at Florida.  Pairing him with Haden now could help the Browns defend suddenly pumped-up passing games in Cincinnati, Baltimore, and Pittsburgh.

The Browns laid the foundation for a successful 2012 draft when trading out of the No. 6 spot in 2011.  They have a chance to get the kind of impact players that can help close the gap between the bottom of the AFC North and the three franchises who continue to keep them there.  The biggest question is whether the Browns will try to get a franchise quarterback now, or later.

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58 Responses to “Team needs: Cleveland Browns”
  1. brownsalwaysrebuilding says: Apr 11, 2012 9:38 PM

    They’ll probably trade down again.

  2. fitzmagic1212 says: Apr 11, 2012 9:41 PM

    im a bills fan in college who has never seen his team play a playoff game. and even i feel bad for you cleveland…..

  3. darthvader89 says: Apr 11, 2012 9:45 PM

    Still don’t understand why they hired Childress. Though the Diabol guy seemed like an ass. Oh well, whatever they do at 4 it won’t stop the Ravens and Steelers from crushing them like the recycled junk Cleveland is.

  4. truthserum4u says: Apr 11, 2012 9:50 PM

    No way they take Kalil at 4 if he’s available. He doesn’t carry the same value as a RT as he does a LT. Only two RT have been selected in the top 10 of the last dozen drafts, and one of those carried more than the traditional RT value because he was selected to protect the blinside of a left-handed QB. Both RTs selected didn’t prove to be worthy of the spots they were picked. Besides, Kalil doesn’t have the desired power teams want at RT.

    Look for the Browns to add talent around McCoy with their first round picks to help him out (RB & WR). Then go for a RT and defenders with their mid-round picks.

  5. chazzmichaelmichaels says: Apr 11, 2012 9:53 PM

    Not usually one for sarcasm, but… Go get a franchise quarterback! Cause it’s just that easy, check ur local convenience store.

  6. habsfanatic says: Apr 11, 2012 9:54 PM

    With what Colt had to work with last season, few QBs would have had much success. Geez the guy’s so young, put some weapons around him and give him a chance.

  7. hisandherpes says: Apr 11, 2012 9:56 PM

    1. Quarterback

    2. See number 1

  8. getsome99 says: Apr 11, 2012 9:58 PM

    Trade the #22 pick and a 2nd RD pick to the Dolphins for Miami’s #8 overall and take Richardson or Blackmon at #4 and Tannehill at #8. Browns have plenty of picks at their disposal to make the necessary moves to get the guy they want.

  9. 6ball says: Apr 11, 2012 10:04 PM

    .

    If available, take Kalil. It’s possible to get a quality RB later in the draft. With the offensive tackles usually the pickings get slim beyond the first round.

    .

  10. kidcleveland77 says: Apr 11, 2012 10:10 PM

    Richardson is the safe pick…Tannehill may be the right pick. What really sucks is the fan base is so used to seeing so many QB busts, they’ll probably riot if he’s the pick.

  11. pavelfitzgerald says: Apr 11, 2012 10:12 PM

    You do not understand the term “journeyman”!! The guy’s played on the same team his whole career. Bush league

  12. clw1906 says: Apr 11, 2012 10:14 PM

    I am not a Browns fan but as a fan of the NFL I would love to see them as contenders again. I’m glad my team landed the #2 pick but Cleveland has the ammo to make gains this off season and next.

  13. bensstinkyfingers says: Apr 11, 2012 10:18 PM

    Colt will be the starter in 2012, they will surround him with the weapons and he will have no excuses if he doesn’t produce with someone to hand off to and throw to. If he still flounders they will look to get the franchise QB first round next year.My Ideal draft – Richardson at#4 , Stephen Hill at #22, or trade up to snatch Floyd. Mike Adams 2nd round, Chase Minnefield, Devier Posey 4th or 5th round, take a chance on Burzfict with one of the compesetory picks if he’s still around so the browns have an angry bonehead enforcer at LB. like the ravens and steelers. etc. The Browns will close the gap this year. within 3 years the browns and bengals will be dominating the AFC North.

  14. marjax says: Apr 11, 2012 10:24 PM

    How else are they going to generate ammunition to trade up for Matt Barkley next year?

  15. pacificnw7722 says: Apr 11, 2012 10:28 PM

    Team needs: Cleveland Browns…………QB!

  16. talkintrashallday says: Apr 11, 2012 10:30 PM

    Team Needs: EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE

  17. kronix7 says: Apr 11, 2012 10:40 PM

    The Browns should be banned from ever drafting a QB. Any QB drafted by the Browns should refuse if they want to have a real career.

  18. northsidesteel says: Apr 11, 2012 10:42 PM

    Bottom line… they need a front office… me and the drunkest members of my high school class could do shots during the draft and do better than these idiots will. It is a shame the proud history of the Browns is left in the hands of these idiots

  19. bigtrav425 says: Apr 11, 2012 10:47 PM

    I would perfer to get Kalil at 4 but would not be pissed at Richardson or Blackmon either..as long as its 1 of the 3.Kalil wouldnt be sexy but he sure as hell would help the offense and Colt who wont get killed as much as he did last yr.i cant believe he lasted as long as he did.Plus he would get more time to throw etc etc.BUT if Kalil is our 4 pick then WR HAS to be our 22 pick…..our WR have to be the worst in the league

  20. ispysomething7 says: Apr 11, 2012 10:50 PM

    They’ll probably trade down again…….as they should

  21. ericf70 says: Apr 11, 2012 10:52 PM

    What do they NOT need?

  22. MichaelEdits says: Apr 11, 2012 10:53 PM

    What this team really needs is a clue. They’ve been a joke since they left town.

  23. couldntthinkofaname says: Apr 11, 2012 11:00 PM

    Bottom line… they need a front office… me and the drunkest members of my high school class could do shots during the draft and do better than these idiots will. It is a shame the proud history of the Browns is left in the hands of these idiots
    _______________________

    You and 99 percent of the Browns fan base are the idiots. All you do is scream and whine and demand that every coach, GM and QB be run out of town. You’re a joke.

    Shut up, quit playing the victims, and let somebody have more than ten minutes to actually build something there, you crybabies.

  24. silvernblak says: Apr 11, 2012 11:04 PM

    Hey I hear Kyle Boller is looking for a job now that wee have cut him from the pie…..Anything will work here wont it? I loved Kosar!!!!!!!! come on Browns, make a move!!!! Just win Babay!!!

  25. hailskins4life says: Apr 11, 2012 11:14 PM

    It was so close. I was hoping to not see any comments about ‘Team needs…owner’. ‘Team needs…everything’. ‘Team needs GM’. You know, the same comments that have been on EVERY teams comments so far. NO team needs everything. Cleveland has the best (or top 3) LT in the game. They need one of those? You can’t draft or sign owners so that comment is just lame. Stick to what the can actually do and actually need.

  26. hikohadon says: Apr 11, 2012 11:47 PM

    “You and 99 percent of the Browns fan base are the idiots. All you do is scream and whine and demand that every coach, GM and QB be run out of town. You’re a joke.

    Shut up, quit playing the victims, and let somebody have more than ten minutes to actually build something there, you crybabies.”
    _________________

    As a member of the Browns fan base, couldn’t agree more. Way too many of us are drowning in our own self-pity.

  27. bigzant82 says: Apr 11, 2012 11:53 PM

    browns get tannehill and richardson trade da #22 pick to miami with some extra picks and roll the dice

  28. shadylamp says: Apr 11, 2012 11:56 PM

    Again Mike F thinking he has the power to sabotage the Browns. Everything you post in this article is exactly the opposite of what the Browns should do. They DO NOT need a quarterback. They need a superstar running back at # 4. Move up from 22 to 18 to get the WR Michael FLoyd (btw another super star). Get a right tackle/guard in the second round and then load up the team with a bunch of sleeper picks. You see how this front office completely turned the Browns defense around with only 4 picks.

  29. truthassassin says: Apr 11, 2012 11:59 PM

    Browns should take Trent Richardson (AKA – the next Adrian Peterson) and the best stud WR available with that second pick and the best OLinemen available with the 2nd round pick… These team’s defense isn’t bad, it’s the offense that needs major help and they’re never going to know what they have in Colt McCoy if they don’t give the damn kid some help on the offensive side of the ball… Worst case scenario, Colt can’t get it done and they take a top flight QB next year who will actually have pieces to play with… DONE!

  30. gerard33 says: Apr 12, 2012 12:04 AM

    Richardson with the early pick
    Janoris Jenkins with the 22nd pick
    Best available WR (deep group) in the 2nd round

    boom! better

  31. doggpound4ever says: Apr 12, 2012 12:06 AM

    The Browns are on the way up. Haters keep hating. We are building a solid foundation. Go Browns

  32. superbowlseahawks says: Apr 12, 2012 12:15 AM

    Team needs: Cleveland Browns: Every position

  33. ranksarot says: Apr 12, 2012 12:45 AM

    If it’s brown, flush it down.

  34. kodakinvegas says: Apr 12, 2012 1:06 AM

    I grew up I’n Cleveland I’n the 50′s-60′s and I can still remember Jim Brown, Paul Brown, Leroy Kelly, Gregg Pruitt, Paul WRfield, Ozzie Newsome, Bob Babich, Clay Matthews, Brian Sipe, Bernie Kosat, and many others. The Browns were long known as the WINNINGEST TEAM IN PRO FOOTBALL. Left there I’n there I’n the mid 70′s. Such a shame what Modell did to them and now this new team/ management has just continued to disgrace a once great and proud organization. Model was CHEAP as dirt. These new guys, ?? I don’t know know. I wish them the best, but what a disgrace they have become. I’d like to let other NGL fans know one thing, the old Cleveland stadium had 80,000 seats, and even when they were losing, the HOUSE WAS PACKED to the gills for 95% of home games. It’s SAD for Cleveland fans and wrong for the Cleveland Browns Management to do a team like that. Thank you for your tolerance, but perhaps now you can understand why Cleveland fans are SO FRUSTRATED. It shouldn’t take 50 years plus to build a team.

  35. borisbulldog says: Apr 12, 2012 1:07 AM

    MichelleEdits wrote:

    What this team really needs is a clue. They’ve been a joke since they left town.

    __________________________________

    Until the Browns win again, D-Bags like you are correct to be a Browns hater!

    On the flip side, I’d rather be a Browns fan then a fan of the team du Jour like you!!!!!!!!!!

  36. cowboysallday says: Apr 12, 2012 1:07 AM

    Team needs: everything on offense

  37. borisbulldog says: Apr 12, 2012 1:13 AM

    PS- Mssr Florio?

    Your hero,Big Jen would have been a journeyman in ’04 if the Browns would have picked him instead of Winslow and McCoy would have won a SB with PIT’s team in ’05!

    26 QB rating in the ’05 SB with LeBeau’s defense doesn’t say much for Big Jen’s talent, no?

  38. jluns275 says: Apr 12, 2012 1:18 AM

    I really feel for you Browns fans. Fight the good fight.

  39. roamingabriel says: Apr 12, 2012 1:20 AM

    Wouldn’t the article be shorter is you listed what they didn’t need?

  40. blanchonegro says: Apr 12, 2012 1:58 AM

    I think they’d be better off disbanding and starting a new expansion team next season. They need an entire new team.

  41. fmwarner says: Apr 12, 2012 3:21 AM

    getsome99 says: Apr 11, 2012 9:58 PM

    Trade the #22 pick and a 2nd RD pick to the Dolphins for Miami’s #8 overall and take Richardson or Blackmon at #4 and Tannehill at #8. Browns have plenty of picks at their disposal to make the necessary moves to get the guy they want.
    ===================================

    That would be great, but even the clowns running Miami’s front office aren’t dumb enough to make such a lopsided trade.

  42. muckfodell says: Apr 12, 2012 4:17 AM

    @darthvader89

    Like your recycled screen name from the ’80s, eh?

  43. bartpkelly says: Apr 12, 2012 4:21 AM

    I don’t see how going after a franchise QB in RGlll is saying that they need to move on from Colt McCoy.
    Even if they get Tannehill they should NOT get rid of McCoy. Tannehill, even if a franchise QB is only a POTENTIAL franchise qb and everyone thinks he needs grooming, so why get rid of someone to groom him?

  44. bleed4philly says: Apr 12, 2012 5:41 AM

    Do what the Seahawks are doing, build the rest of your team first, then strike for a qb when the iron heats up. Let the steelers and ravens get another year older too, their windows are starting to close. Take solid players with those two first round picks and don’t worry about getting a qb, he will come. And… This probably sounds like the dumbest idea ever, but re-uniting McNabb with Chilly might not be so bad. He’s a system qb and chilly was his old OC in Philly. They both have that unlikable personality that makes them gel.

  45. lionsfan415 says: Apr 12, 2012 6:18 AM

    brb I gotta take the Browns to the superbowl

  46. bcjim says: Apr 12, 2012 7:04 AM

    New unis and a new name would be a good start.

  47. coop16 says: Apr 12, 2012 7:38 AM

    I fully agree that the Browns’ primary need is a franchise QB. I also fully agree with the comment that finding one isn’t exactly as easy as heading down to the Seven-Eleven to pick one up. Franchise QBs are hard to find. The Browns haven’t had one since Bernie Kosar, despite devoting two first-round picks to the position, including Tim Couch as the #1 pick in the entire draft.

    The current regime TRIED to get a franchise QB (RG3), but with that having failed, they seem to be in slow-build mode, stockpiling picks and building the foundation of a good team brick by brick, with the idea of adding a franchise QB whenever the opportunity presents itself. It’s EXTREMELY hard for us Browns fans to be patient, since the team has done nothing but lose for 20+ years, but apparently that’s the only option we’ve got. At least maybe this slow-but-steady process has a chance to succeed eventually … IF the team drafts well. And that’s a big IF, as all of us long-suffering Browns fans can attest.

  48. thereisalwaysnextyear says: Apr 12, 2012 7:41 AM

    Our point? Get a franchise quarterback, or stick with the journeyman you have.

    A little early to call him a journeyman isn’t it? That’s not quite fair or accurate. Colt did more his rookie year than Drew Brees and almost as much in his second year. Geez, where has all the patience gone???

  49. sezzu says: Apr 12, 2012 8:08 AM

    Yeah-Kyle Boller. Remember when he came out. His “measurables..?” were off the chart; more hype than RGlll. How’d he work out. Tannehill at #4-is anyone really serious? McCoy will be fine if the front office gets some help (RT and vet WR in free agency would have been sweet)-oh well. People forget McCoys college stats when playing w/ some talent. Richardson at 4-a must. WR or Bobbie Massey at 22. I like the idea of selecting crazy Bufect in the later rounds. Let D’Quell show him the ropes. DON’T trade up or down. Browns need some 1st tier talent. Go Browns!!

  50. brownsfan5505 says: Apr 12, 2012 8:09 AM

    @coulntthinkofaname
    You could not of said it better. So tired of browns fans dissing our front office Heckert is doing a damn good job at drafting starters thus far. If mangina and our other gm from the ravens didnt f$uck up in n2009 when the missed on all 3 second rounders we probably be a lot closerthan we are ie maybe drafted mike wallace before robiske. I say we draftbest available player as longas it makes us better and dont reach for players. We arent going to win a superbowl this yearso it dont matter so justmake the team better this year through the 13 picks we have. I hope we staysomewhere between 4 and 6 on draftdatbecause i like mo richardson and blackmon so any 3 of those picks are solid.

  51. unitedstateoftexas says: Apr 12, 2012 9:08 AM

    If the Browns front office was smart they would be looking for a trade down. Pick up Floyd, Fleener, and LaMichael James and give Colt a damn chance to succeed.

  52. bingocostello says: Apr 12, 2012 9:22 AM

    Burfict be perfect!

  53. hikohadon says: Apr 12, 2012 11:49 AM

    “If it’s brown, flush it down.”
    ____________________

    I remember that being funny… when I was 4.

  54. donjuan1906 says: Apr 12, 2012 1:51 PM

    So basically Florio is saying draft Tannahill, who’s barely played the quarterback in college – to take over the quarterback position for a very under-talented team with no offensive weapons, or better yest bench him for two years and then draft some more sub-par offensive weapons throughout the draft? REALLY!?

  55. dawgtown86 says: Apr 12, 2012 2:33 PM

    Bottom line… they need a front office… me and the drunkest members of my high school class could do shots during the draft and do better than these idiots will. It is a shame the proud history of the Browns is left in the hands of these idiots

    You and 99 percent of the Browns fan base are the idiots. All you do is scream and whine and demand that every coach, GM and QB be run out of town. You’re a joke.

    Shut up, quit playing the victims, and let somebody have more than ten minutes to actually build something there, you crybabies.

    I guess if your definition of a Browns fan is someone who goes by ‘northsidesteel’ you could get your 99% but real Browns fans are not ‘playing the victims’ we’re buying tickets and filling up the stadium year after year. We’re optimistic every season and have been loyal through everything including losing the franchise. There are Browns Backers clubs all over the world. Tell me, what team fanbase has had to endure more than lose their team and then watch that team, now a division rival, win the Superbowl? Who has Red Right 88? The Drive? The Fumble?

    Browns fans can be counted among the best fans in the NFL.

    Go Browns!

  56. mrfrostyj says: Apr 12, 2012 4:54 PM

    Am I the only one who realizes that the Browns haven’t undermined McCoy at all. Both QB’s the Browns have reportedly gone after were the top guys in their draft class. The team is basically saying, it’s either McCoy or the 1st QB off the board that year. It would be different if the Browns were trading picks for a QB who accomplished absolutely nothing like the Jets did going after Tebow when they already had a 1st and 2nd string QB on the roster.

    If they were really that desperate to replace McCoy. Matt Flynn would have a Browns jersey right now.

  57. mrklutch1011 says: Apr 12, 2012 5:34 PM

    If they stay at #4 Richardson is the pick if you want to build on the west coast. Formidable moves and quickness, excellent blocker, can catch out of the backfield with break away speed in the open field. #22 is a wild card. Perfect place to gamble on a receiver that could stretch the field (g techs Stephen Hill) or snag a bookend tackle that slid past the top (stanfords j. martin). Love the idea of pairing jenkins with haden if character conserns hurt his stock. depth on interior defense and linebacker will be a focus in the middle of the draft along with a high upside tackle if they fail to get one earlier.

    Gotta give heckert a chance though. Has an eye for talent and foresight to pick them where he gets the most value. Browns fans are way too loyal to have the recycled garbage they put on the field each season. problem is their expectations to win each year aren’t realistic. But then again rational thought is not in a fans vocabulary

    - Shurmers offensive play calling was just as bad as the personnel running them
    - The walrus likes mccoy but knew fans would be upset not offering more for griffen based on “need for a franchise qb”
    - Childress hire was wierd but could help mccoys progress
    - Locked up best players on each side of the ball instead of losing them to South Beach…
    Could be 2 good drafts away from longterm standing power in a tough grindout division

  58. bigtime1957 says: Apr 17, 2012 12:53 AM

    Look all this QB talk is crazy, There were only 2 QS IN THIS draft, the REST ARE PROSPECTS WHO MAY ONE DAY DO GOOD, BUT ODDS ARE THEY ALL WILL BE BACK UPS AT BEST, you HAVE TO DRAFT Richardson, fact IS THIS DIVISION IS RUNNING BACK STRONG, they WERE STUPID TO LET hILLIS LEAVE, now THEY HAVE TO take THE RUNNING BACK, iF THEY KEEP HILLIS THEY COULD TAKE black Man AND WITH THAT ONE PICK COULD OF HAD THE RUNNING BACK AND THE WIDE OUT, but OF COURSE Cleveland NEVER WANTS TO WORK FROM STRENGTH, so NOW THEY HAVE TO REPLACE THE RUNNING BACK POSITION ALSO. and THAT MEANS Richardson AT 4.

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