The 2017 NFL Combine is officially over. A full weekend of player workouts has passed and free agency is coming up on March 9th. But while the Combine itself might be over, team front offices never stop working. Now, teams must focus on their draft boards, taking Combine results into the equation. Out of all the teams in the NFL, these results were perhaps most important for the Cleveland Browns. First of all, the Browns hold the top pick in this draft. Furthermore, they hold that pick because they were the worst team in the league last year. The Browns need the most help of anyone, and this draft could be a turning point in their franchise.
First of all, the Browns hold the top pick in this draft. Furthermore, they hold that pick because they were the worst team in the league last year. The Browns need the most help of anyone, and this draft could be a turning point in their franchise. Though the Combine does not mean everything, it certainly warrants that teams take it into full account. So, who are the top three 2017 NFL Draft prospects for the Browns now that the Combine is over?
Cleveland Browns Post-NFL Combine Outlook
Alright, let’s address the elephant in the room. During the 2017 NFL Combine, Washington receiver John Ross ran a 4.22 40-yard dash. That is simply unbelievable. That is to say that it is the fastest time ever.
Now, by no means should the Browns take the Al Davis approach. For a while, Davis drafted every player with the fastest 40 of the Combine. Every single year. And no, the Browns should not do that. But John Ross is not just the fastest player of this year’s Combine. He is the fastest player (judging by 40-yard dash times) ever. And that is just incredible. He should not be Cleveland’s number-one priority, but he is definitely a prospect to look into.
Scouts have started to bill UConn’s Obi Melifonwu as “the most athletic prospect that you’ve never heard of.” That could not be any truer. Melifonwu is as athletic as they come. And before last weekend, many fans had never even heard his name before. Let’s take a look at what he did in the 2017 NFL Combine.
Melifonwu seems like a normal safety when looking at his numbers. That is until you get to the broad jump. Obi Melifonwu’s standing broad jump was eleven feet, nine inches. Let that sink in. Melifonwu almost outjumped the measuring lines on the ground. The Combine’s measurements only go up to twelve feet. That’s crazy athleticism. The Cleveland Browns need a playmaker in their secondary. If they want “bang for their buck,” they should look to Obi Melifonwu. Again, not Cleveland’s top pick, but could be a very good second rounder.
Myles Garrett is going to be the first overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. If the Cleveland Browns do not already have his name on the card, they had better be getting there. This past weekend at the NFL Combine, Garrett showed scouts that he could be beyond just “good.” Myles Garrett could be a generational player.
Sports fans often claim that “defense wins championships.” Well, if that is true, the Browns cannot pass on Garrett. In a draft stacked with defensive talent, Garrett is the best of the bunch. Let’s look at his Combine results.
During his Combine workout, Myles Garrett ran a 4.64 40-yard dash. To put that in perspective, Garrett outran the top three quarterbacks in this draft class. And he outweighs all of them by about forty pounds. Oh, and he outran some of the class’s running backs too. Additionally, Garrett bench pressed the 225-pound weights 33 times. Again, pretty good. His vertical jump was 41 inches, which is basketball player levels. Garrett’s NFL Combine workout was ridiculous, and the Browns cannot afford to pass on him.
Conclusion: How Do the Browns Get All of Them?
So, if the Browns want all three of these players, bad news abounds. There is virtually no viable situation for Cleveland to snag all three players in one draft. Surely, Myles Garrett will be the first overall pick. But things get a little bit sketchy from there.
With the number twelve pick, the Browns would be reaching if they wanted to grab Ross or Melifonwu. Although Melifonwu’s stock continues to reach new heights, he is still a second round pick. Additionally, scouts are projecting John Ross to be a late first-round pick. The Browns would need to trade down in the draft to justify picking Ross. However, they really need another high pick in the first round to improve their team. Hue Jackson‘s best situation might be to go for two out of these three prospects. After all, “two out of three ain’t bad.” And “ain’t bad” is a moniker that the Cleveland Browns would love to have during the 2017 NFL season.