The Browns gathered a lot of 8 players from the draft this year. Yesterday I graded the first half of the picks. Today I will wrap up the final 4 and give the Browns an overall draft grade. There are a few criteria by which I handed out my grades: did the player fill a need, what type of impact will they have on the team (both immediate and in the future), and when they were drafted (reach? value?).
Round 3 pick 92 Shawn Lauvao (guard/tackle, Arizona State) - B
Lauvao played both a little bit of guard and tackle in college. In the NFL, he project to be a guard. While not an immediate position of great need on the Browns, I will never bash added depth to either the offensive or defensive line (well, unless they had spent their entire draft on these positions). Lauvao was well worth a late third round pick.
Round 5 pick 160 Larry Asante (safety, Nebraska) - B
Another secondary pick? Considering the poor play of the Browns' secondary last season, especially the safeties (this was also due in part to injuries), I do not mind stockpiling a lot of young talent. Asante is another hard-hitting safety that will be able to help stop the run and rush the quarterback when called upon to do so. I think that he could see a lot of playing time this year. Not bad for a fifth round pick.
Round 6 pick 177 Carlton Mitchell (wide receiver, South Florida) A-
Despite using two picks in the second draft last year on the wide receiver position, many experts listed the position as a need for the Browns. The team waited until the sixth round to address this need. What they got was a potential beast. Mitchell is just under 6'3" and ran just under a 4.5 forty yard dash at the combine. He had some breakout moments at South Florida during his senior season. With his size, he should not have any trouble making an impact in the Browns' shaky receiver corp.
Round 6 pick 186 Clifton Geathers (defensive end, South Carolina) A+
The Browns hit a home run in the sixth round. Their final pick of the draft is a potential stud at the defensive end position in the 3/4 defense. Geathers is 6'8" and tips the scales at nearly 300 pounds. He is considered a little bit raw having come out of school early, but he has played the end position in college and could easily start on the Browns line at the end of the season. Not to mention he has great genes. His uncle was a stud defensive lineman and his brother plays for the Bengals. This was a great way to wrap up the draft.
Overall draft grade B+
There were some picks that were reaches, but there were also some picks of great value. Except for Colt McCoy, whom Holmgren promised would not see the playing field this year, every single pick has the potential to be a starter. I think that the Browns finally have a front office that I am willing to trust. This draft solidified the trust that I have.