Browns, NFL Draft

The Athletic Freak Show: WFNY Mock Draft Strategies

Derik Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Workout warriors see their draft stock rise during the 2017 NFL Combine. No further games are being played on the field, but no player can hide behind shady team programs when the measurements are taken. Height, weight, hand size, 40 time, bench, shuttles, and more allow team front offices to see what types of athletes are behind the players they see on film. While the film weighs heavier in most grades, there are certain indicators that can hurt a players stock.

Additionally, medical reports and interviews make up a significant portion of the combine. The Alabama Crimson Tide continue to have more than their fair share of damaged players coming out of Nick Saban’s grindhouse as Jonathan Allen (shoulder, arthritis) and Cam Robinson (shoulder, labrum) have been tagged with worse than expected diagnosis.

The Rules

  • No trades unless the strategy is specifically geared around trades.
  • Demonstrate multiple options at each pick within the confines of the strategy.
  • Use a MSM Big Board to demonstrate feasibility of picks.
  • Select picks at the Browns four picks in Round 1 and Round 2.

The Draft Strategy

There is something to be said for just taking the best athlete available. Athletic ability, after all, is a precursor to being able to compete at the highest level of football. The best athletes in college often are used all over the field precisely for their ability to create mismatches regardless of where they line up on the field. It is why you will see defenders run the ball or play some receiver. And, why receivers might return kicks and even play some deep safety when a Hail Mary is expected.

The Picks

No. 1 Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
The best player in this draft happens to be the best athlete. Garrett’s ability to bend around the corner is ridiculous and can cause an offense to game plan specifically to attempt to reduce his impact. Despite the Mary Kay Cabot report that the Browns are seriously considering Mitch Trubisky with the first overall pick, Garrett is the answer. Write it on the card in ink. Today.

No. 12 Jabrill Peppers, LB-S, Michigan
While some question the position he will play in the NFL, none question his athletic ability. His strength, speed, and quickness are all elite. His movements on tape make the players around him appear to be moving in slow motion. He pops.

Other options:
Malik Hooker, S, the Ohio State
O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama

No. 33 Haason Reddick, LB, Temple
Reddick has been a running back, defensive back, linebacker, and edge rusher. When his coaches state he did it all for them, they are being truthful. He also has an incredible motor; never giving up on a play. Coupled with his speed and explosiveness, he is the perfect style of linebacker for today’s hybrid defenses. Pairing both Reddick and Peppers together could allow Gregg Williams to adjust the defense to the offensive formations without exchanging personnel on the field.

Other options:
David Njoku, TE, Miami

No. 52 Adoree Jackson, CB, USC
Jackson finally learned how to leverage his athleticism into creating turnovers and touchdowns. His ridiculous speed and quickness had allowed him to be a good player in years past, but he became a key defender for the Trojans once he utilized those for game-breaking plays. He did have a propensity to trust his makeup speed too much at times, but there Jackson has the potential to be a special corner.

Other options:
Derek Rivers, DE, YSU

Last Word

  • No. 1 Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
  • No. 12 Jabrill Peppers, LB-S, Michigan
  • No. 33 Haason Reddick, LB, Temple
  • No. 52 Adoree Jackson, CB, USC

Each of these players would cause headaches for opposing coaches to try to match up with them on the field. Their speed, quickness, and ability would leave Gregg Williams giddy on draft day. The more the 2017 NFL Draft comes into focus, the easier the realization is that the defensive side has a stronger group of players. That is evident when looking directly at the most athletic players.

Who do you got?

Other mock draft strategy sessions from WFNY

  • tigersbrowns2

    1 – Garrett
    12 – D.Cook
    33 – Peppers
    52 – A.Jackson

  • Saggy

    I’m coming around….


    Is it strange that, as a UM and Browns fan, I kinda don’t want them to take Peppers?

    It’s not even about his skill. I’ve said many times that I think his athleticism and instincts are second to none at the college level, even if he’s not really the right size. I’ve also said his coverage is a concern.

    But what it is is this: I have Braylon syndrome. I got sooooo tired of feeling like I had to defend that kid because so many (generalizing) equated his crappiness as a Brown with being from Michigan. The last thing I want is for the Browns to take a Michigan guy who busts because then it becomes some kind of OSU superiority crap thing. Better to just avoid the whole thing altogether.

    No one ever accused me of being rational.

  • RGB

    FYI: Peppers is working out with the LBs, not the DBs.

  • Jaker
  • Jaker

    4 athletic freaks, all helping our defense and would start immediately. Not to mention two possible return men in there. Hard not to like given the rules (although I have Malik Hooker as one of the top three in the draft, so him at 12 would be ideal)

  • mgbode

    Hooker has been mentioned several times and I agree that I would have him as one of the uber athletes (as he is listed as an option there).

    He lost out to Peppers mostly due to his hip labrum issues. I am worried he won’t have the same explosive athleticism right away. I’ll go with the healthy guy who is so much of a gym rat that he is working out with the LBers today, then sticking around so that he can workout with the DBs on Monday.

  • mgbode

    My current car. A silver Honda Odyssey.

    (what are we doing)

  • mgbode

    not as fast as Garrett comes around that corner, but we’ll take it!

  • mgbode

    You know what is weird; looking at it purely athletically, most running backs aren’t at the same level. They need to add too much trunk strength to have the overall athleticism of other positions.

  • mgbode

    Sure. He busts and there will be some to harp on the Wolverine thing. He hits and we’ll all love him like Everitt and Hoard.

    I want Peppers though because he is so much fun to watch and I don’t want to have mixed feelings when doing so anymore.

  • Garry_Owen

    Try to keep up.

  • mgbode

    Cuz he’s the man.

  • mgbode

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  • RGB

    Supposedly, he ran a 4.34 last summer.
    I’m skeptical.

  • RGB

    Did we love Derrick Alexander, or no?

  • tigersbrowns2

    hi MG … i’d like to see defense at #1 & #12 … but i won’t come unglued if they take D.Cook or Ramczyk at #12.

  • tigersbrowns2

    … heck , i even think i’ll survive if they take one of the big-4 QB’s at #12.

  • tigersbrowns2

    … and lastly , i’d say Zeke Elliott was one of the very best athletes in the last draft.

  • mgbode

    Here he makes a case against Garrett by laying out a perfect case for why Garrett is the No. 1 overall pick. Weird.

  • paulbip

    I’ll bet that you loved Mingo then.

  • mgbode

    Best overall athlete, not pure speed.

    Garrett bull rushes, has a spin move, inside moves. Uses leverage and hands well. Et cetera.

  • mgbode

    not sure Alexander fell on either side of the love/hate, he just was

    everybody liked Shea

  • RGB

    Did any of us like Mingo?

  • mgbode

    Pre-draft, we didn’t really even talk about him because we all figured he was outside the Top 10 and we had the No. 6 pick.

    I liked his speed & his name once it was noted we picked him.

  • maxfnmloans

    I agree completely. By the time Braylon left he had blood on his hands as well but even Johnny got more rope than Braylon ever did

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  • mgbode

    Running back is a weird spot. They have to build themselves up to take such a pounding that they are not the best athletes when considered on a whole. They are obviously tremendous but compared to linebacker, safety, edge rusher, and even quarterback – there are better overall athletes.