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Bold Draft Plans – What Are The Needs?

December 20, 2011

Steven left one heck of a comment on a recent post, suggesting his ideal off-season plan for the Browns:

What everyone seems to forget is that the Browns biggest problem is at Right Tackle, Running Back and Wide Receiver. We have 3 quality Tight Ends on our roster and do not need to draft another one. If they draft a TE before a Right Tackle, I will be convinced that the Front Office has no clue. Here is what they must do:
Draft:
1. Trent Richardson
2. Michael Floyd
3. Mike Adams and move him to Right Tackle
4. LeMichael James if he is still on the board.
5. Draft Defensive End
6. Draft an outside Line Backer
7. Draft a Safety to develop.

Free Agents:
1. Pick up a Guard (starter)
2. Pickup an Outside Linebacker (Starter)
3. Pickup Defensive Tackle (Backup)
4. Pickup a Defensive End (Starter)
5. Pickup an Outside Linebacker for depth.

Cut the following:
Tony Pashos
Montario Mondesty
Jaime Mitchell
Scott Fugita

Fire the Offensive Line and Special Teams Coaches, and replace them with quality coaches. Also they must hire an offensive coordinator who is well versed in the West Coast Offense.

Steven’s plan is logical and I like a lot of the names on it, but I think it’s also a good way to start the conversation about the Browns’ actual needs.

Terry Pluto brought up some interesting advanced metrics to talk about the offensive line this week. Pluto notes, “Profootballfocus.com ranks Joe Thomas No. 1 and Tony Pashos No. 6 among all offensive tackles in their “pass blocking efficiency” ratings.” Pluto goes on to explain:

The website ranks guard Shawn Lauvao at No. 55 and guard Jason Pinkston at No. 69 in terms of pass blocking. Center Alex Mack ranks 12th, so the guards have been the trouble spots, as was right tackle when Pashos was hurt as Artis Hicks and Oniel Cousins filled in.

While bouncing some ideas around earlier this week, I told Sam that I would love to see Matt Kalil or Riley Reiff  land in Cleveland to play RT. I decided this week that I would pay close attention to Pashos against the Cardinals. He looked… good.

Now I wonder if it would be very smart to spend big money on ANOTHER tackle, when we have an affordable and effective one in place. Of course, that’t if he can stay healthy…

Pinkston is pretty good. I don’t think many would disagree with saying his play has gotten better as the season progressed. Heck, imagine him with a whole camp under his belt!

Letting him back-up Pashos when Eric Steinbach comes back might be the right move. Steinbach, Thomas, and Mack play well together and make a formidable left side. Pashos can block and in the event he goes down, Pinkston can step it. That still leaves a hole at RG though.

So let’s riff off of Steven’s plan…

The Browns should go out and get Carl Nicks. He is the best OG on the market by a lot… and that’s a market with Ben Grubbs available. NO probably can’t keep Nicks as they paid Jahri Evans big time last year and would be hard pressed to pay two guards top salaries (a predicament the Browns could be in at OT if they spent a top pick on one…). I like Nicks to come in at either guard spot and immediately upgrade the line. He is also young and would be a nice, next marquee lineman to step in as Steinbach starts to fade away.

I can’t get behind drafting Trent Richardson that high, or spending a pick on Mike Adams, but I think Steven also identifies the most pressing holes in the Browns: WR, LB, DE, and S.

The Browns need another safety to compete in the AFC North and I don’t think they have a single worthy linebacker. Meanwhile, someone opposite Sheard on the line would give the Browns quite a front 4. Names I like: Burfict (LB), Ingram (DE), Baron (S). All three guys could be available with that top of the second round pick and I think any one of the three could come in and make an immediate impact.

The other move to make, and I have said this before on TCB, is sign Stephen Tulloch to come play LB as well. The man is a tank.

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