Opinion: The annual ‘How the Browns screw up the draft’ column


Matt Poe

Matt Poe

It’s a tradition unlike any other, folks.

Yes, the Cleveland Browns were mired in another season of misery this past year that resulted in the team claiming a whopping one victory over the course of 16 games.

Of course, that lone victory had to come against the San Diego Chargers (now relocated to Los Angeles), and Phillip Rivers threw the damn game away when I needed him most in fantasy football.

What an ass.

Anyway, that’s neither here nor there.

The Browns own this year’s No. 1 overall draft pick and 10 other picks, marking the third straight year the franchise has owned at least 11 picks in the draft.

Any team would be ecstatic to own the No. 1 overall pick, let alone a plethora of other draft picks that could be utilized to reverse its dreadful fortunes.

But lest, I remind thee this is the Browns we’re talking about, and they are the model for turning situations that are seemingly impossible to screw up into hilarious whiffs that come at the expense of fan’s tears and my amusement.

Essentially, this team is to the draft as Charlie Brown is to Lucy holding the football, resulting in miss after miss. So it is with great pleasure that I pose the question again and likely not for the last time: How will the Browns screw things up this year?

Oh, the possibilities are endless!

They could do the level-headed thing (which would be uncharted territory for this team) and use that first pick on a surefire thing like Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett, a guy who will likely be able to be plugged into the system and contribute right away.

After all, whiffing on the first overall pick is a major no-no when it comes to all professional sports.

But remember, class, who are we talking about again? The Browns! So common sense be damned on undoubtedly taking Garrett.

They could draft North Carolina quarterback and Mentor boy Mitchell Trubisky, who started just 13 games in his college career. Nevertheless, he’s the prototypical NFL quarterback with a big arm that requires every general manager the need to change their underwear and draft him higher than they probably should.

This, my dear Browns fans, will likely be Tim Couch 2.0. They’ll jump the gun on Trubisky, take him at number one and throw him to the lion’s den (not the adult store) behind a crappy offensive line.

And why?

Because every team panics and thinks they have to get a quarterback at No. 1, which, aside from a handful of guys like Andrew Luck and Cam Newton, rarely ever works out. Go ask the Rams when they took Jared Goff at No. 1 last year and the Redskins (kick rocks, Dan Snyder) when they bet the farm on No. 2 overall pick and glass-for bones-quarterback Robert Griffin III a few years back.

Reports from NFL insiders have also stated the Browns may try to get Garrett at No. 1 and then trade up for Trubisky before a team like the New York Jets sweep in and poach him with the sixth overall pick.

But again, who are we talking about? Shout it from the heavens, altogether now: The Browns!

They can’t possibly pull off such a suave move and have it work out in their favor.

Now, as someone who couldn’t care less about mock drafts and all that other crap, I’ve got the perfect move the Browns could make to ensure they don’t screw this one up. No one else has this idea so it’s mine and mine alone — I want all the credit.

Take Garrett first. They’d be stupid not to.

Then, use the No. 12 overall pick that they own and take Deshaun Watson, the Clemson quarterback who’s a proven winner, leading his team to two national championship games (winning one of them) and finishing as a Heisman finalist two straight years.

It’s that simple. God, I could run an NFL team at this rate.

All things considered, the draft is filled with last day surprises, twists and turns and some unexpected picks, and trades will take place.

Still, this could finally be the year the “little engine that never could nor likely ever will” known as the Cleveland Browns finally steer this thing in the right direction.

Or, it could be like every other draft year for them.

Yeah, it’ll probably be like every other draft year for them. May as well start drinking for 2018!

Matt Poe is a columnist, contact him at [email protected].