As relayed to theOBR, the Browns are willing to take less than a first-round selection -- a second- and fifth-round pick along with WR Steve Smith. On the New York side of the ledger, the Giants have been unwilling to part with DE/OLB Mathias Kiwanuka, a player the Browns have coveted. Additionally, the Giants have not been receptive to dealing Smith, especially in a deal which requires a second rounder as additional compensation.
As both teams explore other options, I would never say never as the Browns and Giants have invested significant time in attempting to complete a deal.
- Whether Edwards is dealt or not, the Browns have an issue of overall quality and depth at the WR position. Dealing Edwards only magnifies the deficiency at the position and the Browns have been active in scouting and meeting WR candidates from this draft class. One reason for the Browns wanting to secure the #29 selection in a deal with the Giants is the opportunity to be in position to select one of the handful of viable prospects in this draft players who should be available, players such as Kenny Britt and Hakeem Nicks.
- While unable to confirm, speculation has it the Browns have spoken with the Philadelphia Eagles and an undisclosed AFC team about Edwards recently. Additionally, theOBR has been told the Browns have spoken with the Kansas City Chiefs regarding the third-overall selection in the draft; again we have not been able to gain sufficient confirmation to gain a true perspective of the situation.
- The Buffalo Bills could be a wildcard come Saturday. Upon trading starting LT Jason Peters to the Eagles, the Bills have a void to fill. Starting RT Langston Walker could be moved to the LT spot vacated by Peters and a OT selected in the draft, which leads us to this: Buffalo is believed to have contacted teams within the 2-10 range to gauge draft trade interest. With two first-round selections (#11 and #27), the Bills have the goods to move-up and make a splash.
- Speculation is mounting that the Browns could be trading QB Brady Quinn. Quinn, a 2007 first-round selection of the Browns, has garnered some interest around the league, but talk of Quinn being on the move was quiet until the past 24-hours. As teams interested in a QB are either unwilling to trade up into the top four or five in the draft to make a run at USC prospect Mark Sanchez, players such as Quinn and Derek Anderson are expected to receive additional interest.
- QB Josh Freeman has garnered significant interest from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, as well as some subtle interest from the New York Jets. TheOBR has been told that the Jets are very interested in the QB and could look at him at #17, while the Buccaneers hold the #19 selection in the first round. Outside of possible interest from the Broncos, either team could show interest in the Cleveland QB tandem.
- Sanchez, is a player of interest, but is not expected to be on the board when the Browns are on the clock. As theOBR has noted, if Sanchez is available when the Browns are on the clock at #5, interest in the pick will be intensified by teams looking to trade up, which would be the likely if this scenario falls into place.
- The offensive tackle position is top-heavy in this draft. With Joe Thomas anchoring the ever-important left side of the line, the Browns like the quality of players available to potentially anchor the right tackle position. Despite the quality, the Browns are highly unlikely to look at the RT position with the #5 selection.
- Interestingly, within the past 24 hours, theOBR has learned the Browns are believed to rate OSU CB Malcolm Jenkins and RB Chris Wells higher than any draft publication or prognosticator.
- As the hours tick away until the college player draft, four names keep coming to the forefront in discussions at #5, those being DT B.J. Raji, DE Tyson Jackson, LB Aaron Curry and DE/OLB Brian Orakpo.
- If Raji were to be the selection, the Browns would have an interesting match of interior defensive linemen teaming him with Shaun Rogers. The DE position is not one which Raji projects as a top-level prospect and moving Rogers to DE takes him away from his strength -- quickness and strength off the center/guard. Unless the Browns have something in mind regarding Rogers' status, I question the Raji selection.
- If the pick is Jackson, the Browns would be picking a prototypical 3-4 DE in the mode of a Ty Warren. Looking for a player who can not only stand-up an offensive lineman, Jackson has the burst you like to see in a 3-4 DE to get into the backfield and disrupt. Jackson also has displayed the versatility head coach Eric Mangini likes in his defensive line as he can play inside or out.
- If the selection is Curry, the Browns would move the LB to the strong-side OLB spot. Possibly the most consistent and polished defensive player at this point in time, Curry plays the run very well -- a Browns weakness -- and is not a liability in drops. Curry has not been required to rush the passer in his collegiate career, thus making his value somewhat questionable in this role, though the belief from a Cleveland perspective is the LB is talented, athletic and aggressive. This make-up of physical and mental ability would prove to be beneficial in becoming a viable pass-rushing option in this type of defensive scheme at the professional level.
- If Orakpo is the selection, the Browns slide him into the pass-rushing OLB role and turn him loose. Orakpo has displayed the ability to penetrate and beat the opposition off the spot and gaining ground in the offensive backfield -- a definite weakness of this Browns team. But, Orakpo has shown to have issues getting off blockers and can be moved out of position, especially in the run game. Of the four players garnering attention in this writing, Orakpo has the largest BOOM or BUST ratio... the question is will the Browns take the gamble.