Yesterday on NFL Network, the legend that is LaDainian Tomlinson made a very good case for what the Cleveland Browns should do with the #1 and #4 overall picks in the 2018 NFL draft.
I think he’s the best player in the draft, and if he is, and a lot of people feel that way, you draft him number one. If he’s good enough to go number 2, why not number 1?
He said this whilst they were accessing Daniel Jeremiah’s post-combine mock draft of the top-5 picks where Saquon Barkley goes to the New York Giants at #2. I absolutely agree with the point that if he’s good enough to go at #2 then why not #1? He absolutely should be the top overall pick, even to the Browns!
LT went on to say what many of us have been saying for ages, the Browns have so many needs still on their roster that you use these high picks to fill them. I’ve been saying for a while that I believe it’s too early to be using these uber high picks on a young QB just so the team can panic and throw him to the lions before he’s ready. This is what the Browns have done for years and it needs to stop!
I strongly believe that they need to get the pieces in place around the QB position before you get the guy who’s going to lead your franchise for years to come. Plug that young guy in last, or near to last.
They’ve already made a start by addressing the defensive and the offensive lines. The OL is good on the interior but still suspect at both tackle spots. The defence still needs more quality depth at LB and DB, but they appear to be building from the trenches out (on both sides of the ball), which is absolutely the right thing to do when building a winning franchise.
Even “Prime Time” Deion Sanders was saying it on the last day of the combine when they were talking about whether the Browns should draft Minkah Fitzpatrick rather than one of these QB’s. The Barkleys and Fitzpatricks will have a greater impact at this stage on pushing the franchise forward.
I’ve seen many people saying that you keep pulling the trigger on these QB’s until you find the right guy. Holy shit, are you serious!? Let’s keep wasting these high draft picks on kids that might become the leader of the franchise one day but probably won’t because they’re on a franchise that doesn’t have the talent around them to help them succeed in the NFL. I get the impression that it’s these same people who want the new kid to start straight away and are also the same ones calling the kid “garbage” because he doesn’t instantly lead your franchise to victories the way Tom Brady is doing these days.
Tomlinson then went on to say that they should get a QB in free agency and use the #4 pick in the draft on someone like Minkah Fitzpatrick.
This, again, is exactly what I want to have happen. I’ve been saying for a while, pre-combine, that I’d take Minkah Fitzpatrick first overall but after Saquon Barkley’s showing at the combine, he absolutely has to be number 1.
A reason for me now putting Minkah at #4 instead of #1 is simple — Derwin James. Way back in the season when I started having a casual look at what the Browns need and prospects coming through, Derwin James was the guy that stood out first. I think the Browns desperately need a free safety so that Jabrill Peppers can move to box/strong safety (whatever you want to call that position these days) and both James and Fitzpatrick can play there as well as the other DB positions, they’re that talented. If Minkah isn’t there at #4, go get Derwin James instead. I have more confidence that one of them will be there than I have that Barkley will be.
LaDainian Tomlinson also said that DeShone Kizer, the second round pick by the Cleveland Browns last year, could be better than any of the QB’s in this year’s draft class “over time”. I can’t believe I’m saying this but, I totally agree. He also might turn out to be a pile of shite but, then again, so might any/all of the QB’s in this class, right?
My reasoning for agreeing with LT is a simple one. Basically, as I’ve been studying this years crop of QB’s, I’ve come to the realisation that I believe Josh Allen could be the best long-term option for the Cleveland Browns this time around if they believe they have to go QB. He has the height, hand size and arm strength that it’s generally agreed that are needed to play up north in outdoor conditions and he’s also got one of the best 40-yard times in the class. His current downside is his accuracy, but this can be corrected as people who know what they’re talking about are saying it’s a case of getting the mechanics of his feet working correctly and his accuracy will improve.
Hang on a minute…height, hand size, arm strength, accuracy issues, can run…haven’t we already got that kid on the roster but he’s not called Josh Allen, he’s called DeShone Kizer.
Look, I know Kizer looked bad last season but he did flash some good stuff as well and, let’s be honest, he didn’t have much in the way of quality around him (on or off the field) to help him out, did he? He was put in an impossible position by a head coach who really isn’t the “quarterback whisperer” he has been called in the past. I think he deserves to stay in Cleveland and have this year, at least, sitting behind a veteran whether that be AJ McCarron, Sam Bradford, Case Keenum etc. before being given another chance. He’s still a kid of rookie age but with real NFL experience.
The Browns also got him at a much more realistic price of a 2nd round pick than they would any of the QB’s in this class.
I think what LaDainian Tomlinson said makes a lot of sense and I really do hope the Browns go down a route kinda like the one LT suggests instead of reaching, yet again, for a kid who will probably get thrown to the wolves again by Hue Jackson before he is ready and before the team has the supporting cast for the kid to survive.
Whether Kizer will be better over time than any of this years QB’s, nobody knows right now, but what I’m trying to say is that I don’t believe the Browns have to panic and draft one so high this year, especially not when they’ve already got a version of the best long-term QB in this class, in my opinion, already on their roster.
You’re really going to give up on a kid that you gave up a high draft pick for after just one season in which the crappy head coach threw him into an impossible situation? Each to their own, but I think that’s really bad management if they do.
Of course, what the Browns will probably do is draft Josh Rosen at #1 (I want absolutely nothing to do with that guy in Cleveland) and then trade out of #4 as well as trading DeShone Kizer to another team for peanuts, now that his reputation is damaged….nice one Hue.
Oh, how I love the soap opera that is the NFL!