Cleveland Browns 2019 NFL Draft Recap
The Cleveland Browns made 7 draft picks in the 2019 NFL Draft. With no first round picks after trading for WR Odell Beckham Jr. The Browns draft wasn't nearly as exciting as years past, but I believe they still came out and drafted some talented players.
Round 2 Pick 14 - Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
With the Browns first selection they traded up from the 49th pick to the 46th pick to acquire the talented young cornerback Greedy Williams (6-2, 185 lbs., LSU) Williams was projected in many mock drafts as a top 10 selection, the fact that he fell all the way to the 46th gave the Browns tremendous value. Not wanting him to get selected by the Seahawks or the Saints before they picked at 49, the Browns traded away a 5th round pick to move up 3 spots to grab him.
Here's what Dane Brugler from The Athletic says about Greedy Williams:
A two-year starter at LSU, Williams played both left and right cornerback in Dave Aranda’s 3-4 base scheme, primarily playing press-man and off-man coverages with some zone concepts worked in — he also played on punt return coverage, slowing down gunners. He was rarely out of position in college with the length and sink-and-flow athleticism to mirror receivers’ movements. While competitive and tough on some tapes, he appeared to shut things down later in the season and his struggles shedding blocks or consistently finishing in the run game were a season-long issue. Overall, Williams lacks ideal bulk and play strength for the next level, but his athleticism and length allow him to blanket receivers in man coverage, projecting as a high upside NFL cornerback if his play personality is consistently competitive.
Greedy Williams Highlights
Round 3 Pick 16 - Sione Takitaki, LB, BYU
With their 3rd round pick, the Browns drafted linebacker Sione Takitaki (6'2, 238 lbs., BYU). Many had Takitaki falling later in the draft, but the Browns were intrigued by his physicality and motor and took him in the third round. Takitaki was projected to fall to the later rounds due to being suspended by BYU 3 separate times, but he later rejoined the team and was the team captain.
NFL.com's Lance Zierlein says this about Sione Takitaki:
From wild and immature to a married man and team captain, Takitaki's career at BYU has been filled with several downs and one, big upswing that started in 2017 after he sat out 2016 to "get his head right." He covers up for a lack of speed and instincts with a hard-charging style that leads to feast or famine tape at times. He has deficiencies that muddy his fit at all three linebacker spots, but his playing style is tailor-made for special teams which could be his ticket into a backup linebacker spot at the back-end of a roster.
Sione Takitaki Highlights
Round 4 Pick 17 - Sheldrick Redwine, DB, Miami
In the 4th round, the Browns selected defensive back Sheldrick Redwine (6'0, 196 lbs., Miami). Redwine played his freshman and sophmore years at cornerback and then moved to safety for his junior and senior seasons. ACC coaches voted Redwine honorable mention all-conference after his senior season. Redwine projects as a safety and big-nickel corner for the Browns.
NFL.com's Lance Zierlein says this about Sheldrick Redwine
Aggressive, versatile safety who lacks consistency in coverage, but who possesses the ball skills and run support ability to challenge for a starter's role in time. Redwine's lapses in coverage stem more from a lack of urgency than talent and that might be correctable. In run support and as a tackler in general, he plays behind heavy pad and handles his work with an NFL level physicality. He's better suited in split-zone or down in the box and could become a key cog of the special teams until he gets his shot to start.
Sheldrick Redwine Highlights
Round 5 Pick 17 - Mack Wilson, LB, AL
With their first 5th round selection, the Browns draft linebacker Mack Wilson (6'1, 240 lbs., AL). Wilson was projected as a 2nd round pick, but was taken by the Browns in the 5th round. Wilson didn't show as much growth as many expected in his 3 years at Alabama and that may have contributed to his slide. Wilson played a lot of coverage as linebacker, and probably projects as more of a coverage linebacker than a dominant pass rusher. Overall, a good value pick for the Browns in the 5th round.
The Athletic's Dane Brugler says this abou SMack WIlson
A one-year starter at Alabama, Wilson took over as the full-time MIKE linebacker in Nick Saban’s 3-4 scheme as a junior and produced mixed results. He was pegged early on as the next first-round linebacker in the Alabama pipeline, but his development appeared stagnant throughout the 2018 season, not taking the expected steps in his growth as a player. Wilson is a good-sized athlete with the fluid movements, field range and ball awareness to make plays against the pass and the run. However, he needs to become more refined to be a reliable playmaker, projecting similarly to an inconsistent version of Colts’ linebacker Darius Leonard. Overall, Wilson’s wild play, undisciplined approach and lack of anticipation are holding him back, but he is an impressive size/speed/strength athlete with the versatile skill-set to develop into a true three-down NFL player.
Mack Wilson Highlights
Round 5 Pick 32 - Austin Seibert K, OK
With their 5th round selection from the Patriots for the Josh Gordon trade, the Browns draft kicker Austin Seibert (5'9, 213 lbs., OK). I was a bit disappointed that the Browns drafted a kicker with the pick they received for Josh Gordon, but I think it was smart to bring in some competition for current Browns kicker Greg Joseph. Seibert made 17 of 19 field goals attempted last season with a long of only 42 yards in 2018. His longest of his collegiate career was a 51 yarder. Additionally, he handled some punting duties for the Sooners.
NFL.com's Lance Zierlien says this about Austin Seibert:
Seibert's ability to offer value in three kicking departments will certainly factor into how teams view him, but he's not a fulltime punter and he lacks the consistency and 50-plus totals that teams expect from draftable kickers.
Austin Seibert Training for the Combine
Round 6 Pick 16 - Drew Forbes OT, SE Missouri St.
With the Browns 6th round picks, they selected offensive tackle Drew Forbes (6'5, 303 lbs., SE Missouri St.). Forbes projects to compete for a back-up offensives line position at tackle, but could move inside and compete at guard as well.
The Athletic's Dane Brugler says this about Drew Forbes:
A three-year starter at Southeast Missouri State, Forbes earned the starting left tackle job as a sophomore and started 35 consecutive games in the Redhawks’ up-tempo, zone-read offense. After seven straight losing seasons, he was a key part in helping SEMO reach the playoffs in 2018, earning FCS All-American honors. Forbes pays close attention to his technique but needs to streamline his hands and compact his punch to handle NFL speed. Core power like his is imperative, dropping his hips to anchor and adjust well to moving targets. Overall, Forbes’ lack of length and punch timing could make him vulnerable vs. quick defensive tackles, but all the mental and physical ingredients are there for him to develop into a quality NFL guard.
Draw Forbes Highlights
Round 7 Pick 7 - Donnie Lewis Jr. CB, Tulane
With the Browns 7th and final selection, they picked cornerback Donnie Lewis Jr. (6'0, 190 lbs., Tulane). Lewis started all 13 games his senior year at Tulane and was a second-team All-AAC pick. He posted 56 tackles, three interceptions and 18 pass break-ups.
The Athletic's Dane Brugler says this about Drew Forbes:
A two-star recruit out of high school, Donald “Donnie” Lewis Jr. lettered in basketball, football and track at Central, earning All-State honors with six interceptions as a senior. At only 150 pounds, he wasn’t highly recruited and committed to Tulane over Louisiana-Lafayette. He started 44 games for the Green Wave, tallying double-digit passes defended each of the last three years (often following the opponent’s top receiver). Lewis loves to compete in press-man, showing nimble feet to mirror-and-match and decent length to challenge receivers. A former receiver in high school, he is quick to locate and plays the ball with timing and savvy to consistently crowd the catch point. While he plays quick, he isn’t explosive and his finishing strength is a concern, often getting muscled off the top of routes. Overall, Lewis’ play strength will be an issue (in coverage and run support) at the NFL level, but his competitive demeanor and ball radar are appealing traits.