When did the Cleveland Browns get good at the draft?

The Cleveland Browns have quite a history of bad draft decisions, but that trend seems to be headed in the opposite direction and this years 2021 NFL Draft for the Browns is further evidence of this fact.

Greg Newsome II

With their first round pick coming in at 26 the Cleveland Browns selected a day one starter in Greg Newsome II, which should offer an immediate boost in one of the biggest areas on need.

The back-end of the Browns secondary struggled to slow down opposing wide receivers in 2020, but the addition of Newsome combined with a healthy Denzel Ward and Grant Delpit should lead to much better results in 2021.

Everyone knows how important speed and agility are at the cornerback position, but one often undervalued trait is size. Seems simple enough, though many teams find themselves with a skilled but undersized secondary.

Most of the dominant NFL receivers are above six feet tall:
Michael Thomas: 6’3″ 212 lbs
Julio Jones: 6’3″ 220 lbs
DeAndre Hopkins: 6’1″ 212 lbs
Chris Godwin: 6’1″ 209 lbs
Davante Adams: 6’1″ 215 lbs
Mike Evans: 6’5″ 231 lbs

Honorable Mention due to Division Rivals:
Chase Claypool: 6’4″ 238 lbs
Ja’Marr Chase: 6’0″ 208 lbs

The Browns are now equipped with a defensive secondary that truly sizes up to the competition, as Newsome enters the league measuring 6’0″ and 192 lbs. He is likely to be a day one starter opposite the 5’11” Denzel Ward. The starting safeties for the Browns include John Johnson III coming in at 6’0″ tall, and Grant Delpit who measures in at 6’2″ tall.

Concerned about depth? Apparently, so are the Browns as back up corners Greedy Williams (6’2″) and MJ Stewart (5’11”) seem to align perfectly with the strategy of being able to match size with some of the leagues best wide outs.

Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah

In the 2nd Round the Browns selected Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah with the 52nd overall pick, which was incredible value when considering there was talk that this was who Cleveland was targeting with the 26th overall pick. The Browns seem to have successfully acquired two of their top targets, and this pick aligns perfectly with the first.

While many NFL experts will say Owusu-Koramoah is undersized for the linebacker position, it seems as though these so-called experts are not watching the game evolve in front of their eyes. Teams like the Chiefs and Buccaneers have been collecting offensive weapons across multiple skill positions, which leads to defenses needing to figure out how to stop, or at least slow down these explosive offenses. Players like Owusu-Koramoah give the Browns defense the flexibility required to accomplish such a seemingly impossible task.

Anthony Schwartz

Theres speed, and then there is REAL SPEED! And the latter tends to be associated with anyone running a sub 4.3 40 yard dash. At 4.26 seconds Anthony Schwartz ran the fasted recorded 40 since John Ross ran 4.22 seconds, but let’s hope that is the last John Ross comparison he sees in the NFL.

Standing at 6’0″ tall and weighing in at 180 pounds, this straight line speedster is sure to help take the top off opposing defenses benefitting both the run game and the underneath passing attack. This should also be helpful for other receivers such as Odell Beckham Jr and Jarvis Landry, who should see less focus from the defense when the speedster is on the field.

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