Call it what you want, but I get more excited about draft day than opening up presents on Christmas morning. Most Cleveland Browns fans feel the same way. Considering the last time any of us saw a playoff appearance was eleven years ago, NFL Draft day is our “Super Bowl” (along with any matchup against the Pittsburgh Steelers). So what exactly are the orange and brown elves thinking with the sixth pick?
This team has failed over and over again in recent drafts. Despite grabbing stud center Alex Mack in 2009, the Browns had three second round picks that they blew. Brian Robiskie, David Veikune, and Mohamed Massaquoi. Two of the three are no longer on the team, and Massaquoi may not be on the team much longer.
The 2013 first round draft pick must be near perfect for Cleveland. He must be a significant starter right away. There is no doubt in my mind that the Browns will be going in the defensive direction. Whether it be a flashy defensive back or sack specialist defensive end/linebacker, the orange and brown cannot miss on this crucial pick.
This is new general anager Michael Lombardi‘s chance for redemption. Since Lombardi was hired, fans across Browns town have been clamoring for his head. The guy has yet to make one relevant personnel decision (sounds like all the recent free agent moves were made by Banner). Joe Banner has even stated recently that Lombardi is a “lightning rod” because of how the media and fans do not like him. Give him a chance.
A mistake that would screw up this entire draft would be wasting the sixth pick on one of this drafts’ mediocre quarterbacks. There will be other quarterbacks available later in the draft. Banner, Ray Farmer, and Lombardi need to put their egos aside and build on the talent already in place.
With the already smart moves done in free agency and a great draft, it is not unrealistic to see the Browns in the hunt in 2013. Laugh all you want, but with the right choices and better coaching, this team is ready to take off.
Ryan Ruiz – Cleveland Browns Writer
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