BEREA, Ohio--When all the dust from the trades had settled, the Browns 10 drafted players.
In all, they made four trades--three to go up and one to move down. All totaled, the Browns drafted five defensive players, four offensive players and a specialist. They selected three defensive linemen and two defensive backs on defense. On offense, they took a quarterback, tight end, running back and an offensive lineman. They also added a specialist in a place-kicker.
"We are excited about what we were able to accomplish this weekend," Sashi Brown said. " Obviously, Day 1 was huge for us with three first rounds and being able to add a couple more players on Day 2 and come back today with a number of guys we had targeted. We moved around quite a bit, but we were able to come away with still 10 picks of guys who we really had high on our board going into today. Great team effort from our coaches to our scouts, to our scouts, support staff, ownership. We are really proud of our ability to execute our plan to come away with a real successful weekend."
Brown thinks the draft will help the team take a big step forward.
“Yes, we think this is a big class for us, but again, (OL) Kevin (Zeitler) and JC (Tretter), the guys we added, (WR) Kenny (Britt) in free agency – there is no ‘one brick,’ " Brown said. "This is obviously a good group. We set ourselves up next year for another good group to come in. We want to perpetually be getting better. We are not going to rest now. We ultimately will go out and start having conversations with people based on opportunities that will come out of the draft over the next week or two and watch some guys around the league and what falls out that can potentially can continue to help us. It is a continual process.”
Strategy officer Paul DePodesta said the draft fell the way theBrowns wanted it to.
"We felt like we were able to take players where we wanted to take them," DePodesta said.
After taking Myles Garrett with the first pick in the draft, the Browns traded down in the first round from 12 to 25 and selected Jabril Peppers. Just four picks later, they traded back up into get tight end David Njoku with the 29th overall pick.
On the second day, the Browns selected quarterback DeShone Kizer with the 52nd overall pick, a pick obtained from the Titans last season. In the third round, the Browns took defensive lineman Larry Ogunjobi from North Carolina-Charlotte with the 65th overall pick.
The Browns started the third day without a fourth-round pick, but traded back into the round and selected defensive back Howard Wilson from Houston with the 126th overall pick.
In the fifth-round, the Browns selected offensive tackle Roderick Johnson with the 160th overall pick after trading up.
The Browns drafted defensive tackle Caleb Brantley with the first pick in the sixth-round (185th overall).
They finished the draft in the seventh round by taking kicker Zane Gonzalez from Arizona State with the 224th overall pick and running back Matthew Dayes with the 252nd overall pick.
Hue Jackson was asked his feelings now as the roster he'll take to training camp for the most part is set.
“I will know more about them when I can get them on the field," Jackson said. "I feel more comfortable. It is the second year in this opportunity for me with our coaches, with a new defensive staff and obviously with this group here. I think we are better. Now, how much better we are? We will find that out as we go, but I feel more comfortable and confident in our guys that are in the locker room and that they know what to expect and how we want to play. I think we did a great job of drafting to our identity and what we want to become here at the Cleveland Browns.”
Jackson feels good about the players they've brought in.
“I do, but again, until we have an opportunity to practice and compete against someone else do you know," he said. "We drafted these guys because we think they are talented and able to fit into our scheme. We feel very comfortable about the guys that we brought in here that they are going to have the chance to compete for our team right away.”
Brown said it's still about winning games and no matter how good they might feel about the moves they've made, it all comes down to wins and losses.
“Hue said it – we will find out come September," Brown said. "That is what matters. We go out to win, and we are not judging how good we are based on a draft class or a free agency class or anything on paper. For us, it is out there between the lines. That is where the buck stops, period. We are here to win games. We will know when we are hoisting that trophy that we have a little bit more to do the next offseason, but that is the goal and anything short of that is not acceptable.”
Rd 1-DE Myles Garrett (6-5, 262) Texas A & M (1st overall)
Rd 1-S Jabril Peppers (6-1, 205) Michigan (25th overall)
Rd 1-TE David Njoku (6-4, 245) Miami (Fla,) (29th overall)
Rd 2-QB DeShone Kizer (6-4, 230) Notre Dame (52nd overall)
Rd 3-DL Larry Ogunjobi (6-3, 305) UNC-Charlotte (65th overall)
Rd. 4-DB Howard Wilson (6-1, 185) Houston (126th overall)
Rd. 5-OL Roderick Johnson (6-7, 311) Florida State (160th overall)
Rd. 6-DL Caleb Brantley (6-2, 314) Florida (185th overall)
Rd. 7-K Zane Gonzalez (6-1, 160) Arizona State (224th overall)
Rd. 7- RB Matthew Dayes (5-8 5/8, 207) North Carolina State (252nd overall)