It’s been a few weeks, but it’s another Mock Draft Wednesday here at WFNY. The NFL Draft will no longer be in Las Vegas and there will no longer be fans in attendance due to the current coronavirus pandemic, so while the draft will be quite different this year, it still just as meaningful to each of the 32 teams in the NFL. For the Cleveland Browns, it’s yet another opportunity to improve their roster, patching as many holes as they can that they have not filled in free agency yet and adding depth to the roster overall.
The NFL Scouting Combine — when some NFL Draft analysts and teams alike overreact to the numbers and measurements — may be over, there’s still plenty that can change. Unfortunately, it looks as though there won’t be any Pro Days at any colleges prior to the draft, which certainly hurts the late-round picks and fringe prospects. Changes to mock drafts are inevitable given that the actual NFL Draft is still just under one month away, but let’s take a look at the direction some mock drafts have the Browns going with the No. 10 pick in the first round. In case you don’t see some big-name analysts’ mocks, it’s due to them not have an updated one in the past week or so.
ESPN’s Mel Kiper: OT Mekhi Becton, Louisville
I really liked Cleveland paying up in free agency for Jack Conklin, who will upgrade the right tackle spot. But this team could still use a new starter at left tackle, which is why I like Becton here. A mountain of a man at 6-foot-7, 364 pounds, Becton also has excellent feet and agility — he is the heaviest player to run a sub-5.2 40-yard dash at the combine since 2006. Chris Hubbard, signed in 2018 to replace Joe Thomas, hasn’t worked out; it’s time to get Baker Mayfield better protection.
CBS’ Ryan Wilson: OT Andrew Thomas, Georgia
The team signed RT Jack Conklin in free agency. Chris Hubbard could move from RT to RG and Andrew Thomas would be the Browns starting LT on Day 1. Maybe this is the year it all comes together for Cleveland.
CBS’ Will Brinson: OT Andrew Thomas, Georgia
The Browns have had a very impressive offseason so far — adding more protection for Baker Mayfield should be paramount.
CBS’ Josh Edwards: Jedrick Wills, Alabama
Cleveland added Jack Conklin in free agency, which solved some issues on the right side. However, they still have to fill a need at left tackle. At No. 10 overall, they have their choice of Wills, Thomas or trading down and potentially selecting one of the other top options.
CBS’ Chris Trapasso: OT Andrew Thomas, Georgia
After signing right tackle Jack Conklin to a big deal in free agency, this may seem like an overreaction up front, but it’s not. The line was pretty bad in 2019, and Thomas is a road-grader in the run game with mostly solid pass-protection chops.
CBS’ Tom Fornelli: OT Tristan Wirfs, Iowa
Picking up Jack Conklin to play right tackle is a good start, but it doesn’t fix the Browns offensive line. Wirfs could turn a weakness into a strength almost immediately.
Walter Football’s Charlie Campbell: OT Mekhi Becton, Louisville
Cleveland owner Jimmy Haslam enjoyed going 1-31 so much that he brought back Andrew Berry to help reproduce that magic with holdover fraud Paul Depodesta. Thus, Cleveland will shy away from drafting good football players like Denzel Ward or Nick Chubb in favor of prospects who score well in analytics. Fortunately for their fans, the Browns may not be able to screw up their first-round pick if they draft one of the top offensive tackles, as Andrew Thomas, Mekhi Becton and Jedrick Wills are all safe picks to be good pros.
Becton (6-7, 364) is a massive blocker who is a good athlete for his size. For the next level, it would help him to trim some weight and get in better condition. Becton has weight issues, and some teams have medical concerns with him relating to his back. However, some team sources have said he is extremely talented with a ton of upside. They say Becton has freak show athletic ability for a player of his size, calling him a more athletic version of Trent Brown. They think Becton could be a franchise left tackle, and some sources believe he could end up going as top-16 selection in the 2020 NFL Draft.
NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein: OT Tristan Wirfs, Iowa
Athletic tackle who has experience on both the left and right sides. With Jack Conklin in the fold now, Wirfs gives the Browns a chance to protect Baker Mayfield with a pair of quality bookends.
Sports Illustrated’s Corey Parson: OT Jedrick Wills, Alabama
It doesn’t matter how many big-name weapons you have on offense; if you can’t protect the quarterback, you won’t be able to move the ball. The Browns need to upgrade their offensive line. Wills is a 6-foot-5, 320-pound tackle who can play on day one.
Sports Illustrated’s Kevin Hanson: OT Mekhi Becton, Louisville
Even though the Browns have agreed to a three-year deal with free-agent right tackle Jack Conklin, the team could be in the market to upgrade both tackle spots. Not only is left tackle Greg Robinson a free agent, but right tackle Chris Hubbard graded out as PFF’s 76th-best offensive tackle (among 81 qualifiers) last season. A mountain of a man at 6′ 7″ and 364 pounds with vines for arms (35 5/8″), the 20-year-old Becton has work to do on technique, but he has unique movement skills for a man his size.
SB Nation’s Dan Kadar: OT Mekhi Becton, Louisville
The loser of the Hopkins trade, besides Houston, was Cleveland. It all but assures the Cardinals taking one of the offensive tackles off the board. After handing out a huge deal to right tackle Jack Conklin, the Browns will be after the best left tackle available with the No. 10 pick. That could be Becton or Georgia’s Andrew Thomas.
Pro Football Network’s Neal Driscoll: OT Jedrick Wills, Alabama
The Browns did a solid job of addressing their offensive line in free agency by acquiring right tackle Jack Conklin. With that said, they still have a major hole at left tackle. Problem solved.
Sporting News’ Vinnie Iyer: OT Tristan Wirfs, Iowa
The Browns took care of right tackle in free agency with Jack Conklin signed to replace Chris Hubbard. Here they can get a massive upgrade from Greg Robinson on Baker Mayfield’s blindside. Wirfs has the athleticism at 6-5, 320 pounds to hold down left tackle for a long time. He combines his pass-blocking skills with power and physicality in the running game.
Draftwire’s Luke Easterling: OT Jedrick Wills, Alabama
The Browns are in a perfect spot to address their biggest need and get ideal value at this spot. Any of the top four offensive tackle prospects would be a fantastic pick for Cleveland, and it’s Wills in this scenario, a player who could easily be a top-five pick. Even with the addition of Jack Conklin, adding another bookend like Wills is necessary to keep Baker Mayfield protected.
Fox Sports’ Jason McIntyre: OT Mekhi Becton, Louisville
The perennial offseason winners scored on the offensive line (Jack Conklin) and tight end (Austin Hooper) and took my advice to pick up a QB to push Baker Mayfield (Case Keenum). Becton probably starts on the right side and moves to left in Year 2.
USA Today’s Michael Middlehurst-Schwartz: OT Mekhi Becton, Louisville
With right tackle Jack Conklin coming aboard, Cleveland has completed a significant part of its protection plan for Baker Mayfield. While the 6-7, 364-pound Becton isn’t the kind of blocker one would typically peg for a zone-blocking scheme, he’s astoundingly athletic and would help GM Andrew Berry and coach Kevin Stefanski finish the job up front.
Drafttek: OT Jedrick Wills, Alabama
The Browns have left no doubt that they plan to feature the run moving forward. That’s why I think Wills is such a great fit here. He may not have the long-term upside of Mekhi Becton, but has enough athleticism to combine with his significantly-improved technique to play on the left side. Wills is also a people-mover in the run game.
~Austin Smith, DraftTek Senior Analyst
To make it easier on you here are all of the players that were predicted to go to the Browns (and how many times they were):
Here are the totals from all of the NFL Mock Draft Roundups combined:1
What say you, Browns fans? Do you have a certain position(s) that you want the Browns to focus on early in the draft, specifically in the first round? Do you have a can’t-miss guy(s) that if they drop to No. 10, you want Cleveland to take and it would be considered a steal? Which position do you think they should focus on? If you had a perfect plan for the draft, specifically the first round, what would it consist of?
That said, if there is a certain mock draft(s) that you feel as though we should include in these, please let us know. The more mock drafts and predictions, the better.
Cody Suek’s mock drafts:
Mock Draft Roundups: