Browns should avoid conventional wisdom

Another day closer to April 26 ... another mock draft.

It's way too early for mock drafts, but that hasn't stopped anyone.

Here's my first for FOX Sports Ohio, with appropriate comments on the top five, the Browns and Bengals picks and on other players who might or might not be a Brown of a Bengal. One word of advice: Don't go to Vegas with it.

1 -- Indianapolis—Andrew Luck, QB, StanfordIgnore Jim Irsay's bluster. This is easily the biggest no-brainer in the draft in years. Luck far and away is best quarterback prospect and the best player in this draft.

2 – Washington – Robert Griffin III, QB, BaylorThe Redskins didn't trade up to take an offensive tackle.

3 – Minnesota – Matt Kalil, OT, USCThe easy thing to do here is go with chalk and place Kalil. But something tells me that a team that feels a running back will make a big difference will trade up to this spot to take Trent Richardson. That's just a hunch, though, and not based on any inside information.

4 – Cleveland – Michael Floyd, WR, Notre DameCall this the pick I think the Browns should make, as opposed to the one they absolutely will make. Perhaps it's a reach. Or perhaps it isn't. A few years back the Colts shocked the NFL world by taking Edgerrin James ahead of Ricky Williams. "How can they do that?" folks screamed. "Because he's better," the Colts said. And James was better. He was a better receiver, better all-around player. Same is true here. Floyd is bigger, stronger and as fast at the other top wideout , Justin Blackmon. Floyd had issues in college with drinking, but issues have never stopped Tom Heckert from taking the guy he thought was best (see Greg Little and DeSean Jackson). Floyd is a big, strong playmaker. He scores touchdowns, and he has the ability to run after the catch. The debate will rage forever whether the Browns are better off taking a running back over a receiver and that this pick should be Richardson if he's there. Both arguments have merit – as long as the guy picked comes through. But consider the names Ray Rice, Matt Forte, LeSean McCoy and Ben Tate. All are second-round picks. It's always risky to take a receiver in the first round because the diva possibilities are there. But the draft and experience have shown that a running back can be found in the second round. If the Browns think there is a back to be had in round two, then they need to lean receiver in round one. They need  to help Colt McCoy, and they need to take the best receiver they can find. The best one is Floyd. So take him.

5 – Tampa Bay – Trent Richardson, RB, AlabamaIt would not be at all surprising if the Bucs decided to trade up to three to take him.

6 – St. Louis – Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

7 – Jacksonville – Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina

8 – Miami – Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M

9 – Carolina – Morris Claiborne, CB, LSUIt would not be at all surprising if the Browns took Claiborne with the fourth pick. In fact, if the Browns had any kind of offense, they would take Claiborne because he's that good. But Cleveland's needs on offense are so glaring they have to pass up the best player available at four. And leave him for a the Panthers, who are very happy about it.

10 – Buffalo – Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa

11 – Kansas City – Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College

12 – Seattle – Melvin Ingram, DE, South Carolina

13 – Arizona – Cordy Glenn, OT, Arizona

14 – Dallas – Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama

15 – Philadelphia – Dontari Poe, DT, Memphis

16 – NY Jets – Stephen Hill, WR, Georgia Tech

17 – Cincinnati – David DeCastro, OG, StanfordThe Bengals offseason of being content continues, as the perfect guy sits there for them. DeCastro fits right in and starts for as long as Cincinnati wants him. He's big, strong, smart and he has the ability to pull. It's not an exciting pick, but the Steelers have a track record of success making picks that aren't exciting.

18 – San Diego – Stephen Gilmore, CB, South Carolina

19 – Chicago – Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor

20 – Tennessee – Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

21 – Cincinnati – Mark Barron, S, AlabamaThe Bengals would have preferred a cornerback, but with Gilmore, Jenkins and Kirkpatrick gone, the best defender left is Barron, a safety the team can pair with Reggie Nelson for a very strong secondary.\

22 – Cleveland – Jonathan Martin, OT, StanfordThis is a coin flip between Martin and Bobby Massie of Ole Miss. The Browns could take either.

23 – Detroit – Dont'a Hightower, LB, Alabama

24 – Pittsburgh – Bobby Massie, OT, Mississippi

25 – Denver – Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State

26 – Houston – Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois

27 – New England – Andre Branch, DE, Clemson

28 – Green Bay  -- Courtney Upshaw, DE/LB, Alabama

29 – Baltimore – Peter Konz, C, Wisconsin

30 – San Francisco – Chandler Jones, DE/LB, Syracuse

31 – New England – Michael Brockers, DT, LSU

32 – NY Giants – Coby Fleener, TE, NY Giants


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