As I sat here and watched the first half of the NFC Championship between the Atlanta Falcons and San Francisco 49ers, I can’t help but wonder why Julio Jones is not in Cleveland. The Cleveland Browns had a chance to grab Jones with the sixth pick in the 2011 NFL Draft. Instead, they traded that pick for five Falcons’ draft picks.
Watching today’s game has made me realize just how much of a beast Jones is. If not already this year, then for sure next season, Jones is a top five receiver in the NFL. As the first quarter came to a close, Jones already has 100 yards receiving and a touchdown.
So what does Jones equate to for the Browns? First round pick Phil Taylor (DT), second round pick Greg Little (WR), fourth round pick Owen Marecic (FB), 2012 first round pick Brandon Weeden (QB), and the 2012 fourth round pick was traded to help the Browns move up one spot to grab Trent Richardson.
Taylor missed half of this season with a weight lifting injury before training camp started. Despite picking up by the end of the season and leading the Browns in catches, Little has had a terrible case of stone hands. Marecic was the Browns’ starting fullback and lost his job due to horrendous play. The 29 year old Weeden had a decent season by throwing for over 3,300 yards and 14 touchdowns. And finally, Richardson should be the in the backfield for years to come. However, Richardson had a very small portion to do with the draft day trade.
Looking back, maybe it wouldn’t have been a bad idea to hold on to the pick and select Jones. In the end, the reality is Jones is one game away from the Super Bowl and the Browns are still dead last in their division. Sometimes it is very difficult to be a Browns fan, isn’t it?
Ryan Ruiz – Cleveland Browns Writer
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