So the Browns filled a couple of needs and grabbed the headlines with their second to last pick. Here are some quick thoughts…
- It’s funny how big of a low –> high this day went for most Browns fans.
- The day started with the Browns sitting pretty at #38… several big names still available when we picked: Sergio Kindle, Daryl Washington, Jimmy Clausen, Colt McCoy, etc. etc. They even had Jim Brown come out to announce the pick! This had to be a big deal right? And the Browns select… T.J. Ward? Umm… let me check my draft book.
- Now I had heard the name before — him and Nate Allen were two names at safety that I had read about being rated ahead of Taylor Mays by most teams. But I really didn’t have that great of a clue of who he was. I knew he went to Oregon, and that might have been the biggest reason I wasn’t overly excited about the pick. Not that I have anything against Oregon or anything, they seem to have a great program, very loud jerseys, running backs that throw mean left hooks, and a QB that’s just OK at stealing laptops.
- Seriously though, I have nothing against Oregon. The only reason that fact didn’t bode well with me is that I went to the Ohio State-Oregon Rose Bowl game this past January — and I remember just about everything from that night. I just don’t remember an Oregon safety making any impact plays. Not a good sign.
- Also not a good sign: history of knee injuries and sitting out 6 games last year due to a bum ankle. Although I think he deserves major props for battling through his one major knee injury. The dude tore his patella tendon! That’s what knocked former Browns Gary Baxter and LeCharles Bentley into retirement. This guy not only recovered from it, he returned to form and played some damn good football in the Pac-10 for three seasons. That’s pretty tough.
- So as I grew increasingly frustrated about the fact the Browns drafted someone I had to look up while I watch the Baltimore Ravens select collegiate studs Sergio Kindle and Terrence Cody, there seemed to be a glimmer of hope with the Browns trading back up into the 2nd round. Everyone I watched the draft with stood up from their chairs in excitement because it had to be a big name right?! And the Browns select Montario Hardesty? … Where’d I put that draft book again?
- I will say this about Hardesty: he had a pretty impressive 15 second highlight reel on ESPN’s draft coverage – for whatever that’s worth. Seems big, powerful, shifty enough to shed some tacklers. Rushed for over 1,300 yards last year, so I’m sure the guy is no slouch. But again, a history with knee injuries? I started getting the sense that Holmgren and Heckert were getting cocky by ignoring the horrible luck we’ve had with injuries.
- But then again, Courtney Brown didn’t miss a game when he was at Penn State, so maybe Holmgren and Heckert felt these guys already had their turn of bad luck. Sort of like the reasoning behind not getting struck by lightning twice. Yeah. That’s the way I’ll spin it.
- Before moving on, I’ve got one more gripe to rant aimlessly about: I’m sick and tired of the new Browns regimes getting tooled on draft day by the organizations they came from. Allow me to elaborate:
- Phil Savage came from the Ravens. In 2006, the Browns had the 12th overall pick while the Baltimore Ravens held the 13th selection. We needed help along the defensive line badly. My dream guy was Haloti Ngata – but him falling to the Browns seemed to be nothing more than an ill conceived dream of mine. Yet lo and behold, he falls right into our laps. I do a little jig around my dorm room, excited to grab this stud. Then to my utter dismay, I see that beautiful orange helmet at the bottom of the screen switch to a ravens logo. The Ravens took Ngata and he looks like he’s well on his way to becoming a perennial pro-bowl player. We took Wimbley, and he is now an Oakland Raider. What did we get for this little swap? A 6th round pick — which turned out to be DT Babatunde Oshinowo, who I’m sure is at some sort of Ponderosa Steakhouse as I type this. We got tooled.
- Eric Mangini came from the Jets. In the 2009 Draft, we held a coveted 5th overall selection. The NY Jets had the 17th overall pick. The Browns struck a deal to move down for something like a third along with Brett Rhatliff, Kenyon Coleman and Abe Elam. Now, I was all for the idea of trading down – but you’re telling me we couldn’t do better than the NY Jets pu pu platter they offered? Tooled.
- Tom Heckert came from the Eagles. In order to move up 12 spots into the end of the second round, the Browns give the Eagles their highest third, along with two of their fifth round picks. Now I know it followed the draft value chart fairly well, but just earlier in this draft the 49ers moved up two spots in the first round and only gave up one 4th. And does anyone else thing Hardesty would have been gone within those twelve picks? I don’t know, it just seemed like Andy Reid got the better of Heckert in that situation. Savage was the worst example, but its still a former team getting the upper hand on a new Browns regime.
- Back to the draft. After the Browns made their trade to get back into the second, I thought for sure it was for Colt McCoy. They didn’t. This is when I came to accept that the Browns just weren’t taking America’s hero today. And I wouldn’t get to see his girlfriend on a regular basis — truly the most disheartening subplot when you get down to it.
- So when draft rolled around to the 85th overall pick, I really expected to hear Roger Goodell to read some other name that would make me bust out my draft book. What’s that? Is that Mack Brown? No way. Way! Browns take Colt McCoy – and the heavy favorite in the lebrontourage poll finally lands on the Browns!
- My take on Colt:
- He’s a leader. In the “SportsCenter Special: John Gruden’s QB Camp”, Gruden asks him what he’s going to do when he takes over a huddle with veteran lineman who don’t care what some rookie has to say. McCoy’s responds in a dead serious tone: “Same thing I did when I was a freshman at Texas with five senior offensive linemen… Earn their respect.” Gave me chills.
- He’s a winner. In fact, the winningest QB in college football history.
- He’s accurate. In fact, the second most accurate QB in college football history – completing just over 70% of his passes over his 4 year career. In his junior year, he completed 77%! That’s absurd. I can’t even do that on Madden.
- He’s accurate. I know I already said this. Don’t care. I’ve seen Derek Anderson or Brady Quinn misfire on far too many easy slant routs to not mention this twice.
- He’s got a smoking hot girlfriend.
- If you’re not completely sold on the Colt McCoy pick, I get it. But the bottom line is that we didn’t “reach” for him. He was the 85th overall pick, so there is no real pressure here. I mean hell, when the Browns drafted Charlie Frye, he was the 67th overall pick! This has got to be an upgrade over that, right?
- With the last pick on the day, the Browns try to upgrade the offensive line by selecting Shawn Lauvao, an offensive tackle from Arizona State that projects to play guard in the NFL. Apparently he’s gotten poor reviews among the draft websites out there, but the guy was second team All Pac-10 so he can’t be a scrub.
- An interesting note about this guy is that he is Hawaiian. Hopefully he fares better than former Hawaiian Browns draft picks in David Veikune and Melila Purcell.
So what grade do you give the Browns day 2?