Fan View: Playing Chess Instead Of Checkers

GoErie.com's Jeff Biletnikoff offers his perspective on the Browns 2007 draft...

As I look back at this year's draft, I don't care about day 2. 
 
I really don't.
 
The Browns get a solid A due to what could be one of the greatest day 1's in NFL history.  Even if all their day 2 picks get cut before the first preseason game, the Browns achieved a perfect 10 in 2007's draft.
 
At #3 overall, Joe Thomas was the only pick to make.  The trenches, especially those on the offensive side of the ball, have been the Browns achilles heel since they came back into the league.
 
Now, it seems as if it's a strength.
 
If a miracle happens, can you imagine an offensive line in 2008 that features LT Joe Thomas, LG Eric Steinbach, C LeCharles Bentley, RG Kevin Shaffer (if they move him to G and if he stays----ok, the one semi black cloud right now), RT Ryan Tucker and depth featuring Hank Fraley, Issac Sowells and Seth McKinney?
 
Even substituting C Hank Fraley into that fantasy if LeCharles Bentley's career is over does little to stem the excitement and it's a reality for 2007.  Put McKinney at the RG slot and leave Tucker at RT with a Shaffer trade and it's still tough to dampen your enthusiasm.
 
The Browns have a real offensive line. 
 
Add QB Brady Quinn in that dream sequence taking snaps from Fraley and/or Bentley, throwing to Jurevicius, Edwards, Winslow, Heiden, Wilson, and Cribbs plus handing off to Lewis, Harrison, Wright and maybe Moss.
 
Wake yourself up from the "dream sequence" and realize it's a reality.  The team just might have it's first legitimate offense since the rebirth.
 
I applaud what the Browns front office did.  Essentially they traded a #36 pick this year to get their franchise QB a year early and who knows if a signal caller of Brady Quinn's caliber would have been available when they picked in 2008?
 
The Browns calculated that Quinn is a franchise QB so they aggressively moved up to get him.  They didn't sit back and just mindlessley hold onto their picks.  Cleveland targeted what they thought were cornerstone pieces of the rebuilding process and moved to get them in bold fashion. 
 
The fact that they moved back into round 2 to snatch UNLV CB Eric Wright only reinforced to me that the whole organization finally has a plan that they're willing to take calculated risks with.
 
Is Quinn a franchise QB?  Is Joe Thomas a 10-15 year fixture at LT and a perennial pro bowler?  Can Eric Wright be a lockdown CB?  Only time will tell. 
 
Phil Savage and company must have believed the answers to the above questions were yes, based on how they orchestrated day 1 of the NFL draft.
 
You never know what's going to happen but it looks as if the Browns might have identified their future QB, LT and CB in the 2007 selection party.
 
A for effort.
 
Let's hope it turns into a real A in the next 3-5 years because if that's the case, the Browns will probably start drafting later and later.
 
Wouldn't that be nice?

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