After selecting Louisiana State outside linebacker/defensive end Barkevious Mingo sixth overall Thursday night in the first round of the NFL Draft, the Browns aren’t scheduled to pick again until early in the third round.
The second and third rounds will be held today with the draft resuming at 6:30 p.m. Teams will have seven minutes per selection in round two and five minutes per choice in round three.
The Browns don’t have a second-round pick this year because former General Manager Tom Heckert exercised it by nabbing wide receiver Josh Gordon last summer in the supplemental draft. In March at the NFL owners meeting, Browns coach Rob Chudzinski said he believes Gordon has the tools needed to evolve into a legitimate No. 1 wide receiver. In other words, the new regime should be grateful for Heckert's gamble, provided Gordon continues to develop.
Regardless, CEO Joe Banner said the Browns had a trade in place Thursday night but chose not to execute it because Mingo was available at No. 6. Banner would not divulge the details of the deal, but there’s certainly a chance it could have yielded a second-round selection for the Browns.
Still, they went with Mingo.
“This was the outcome we were hoping for,” Banner said.
The Browns also chose Mingo over Alabama cornerback Dee Milliner, who went ninth overall to the New York Jets, and they still have a glaring need for a starting cornerback who can line up opposite Joe Haden.
“We’re really not going to force filling a need on a short-term basis as opposed to building the team we want to have to get really good and sustain it,” Banner said. “We’ll certainly, at corner, as well as at other positions, be looking for somebody we feel can fill the spot and do so for a while and do it at championship level. If that situation presents itself, that would be great, but if not, we’re not going to force it.
“We’re not going to fill all the needs of the team this year. It’s just not going to happen -- I’ll tell you right now. If there’s a guy there we think can be a long-term solution and quality player, we’ll pick him. If it’s just somebody that upgrades us for this year and then we’ll need to replace again, we won’t.”
In addition to cornerback, free safety is a huge need. The Browns could also use help at tight end, guard, inside linebacker, wide receiver and fullback. They might have their eyes on a developmental quarterback, too.
But, again, the Browns aren’t slated to pick tonight until No. 68 overall. Without the second round unfolding first, it’s difficult to predict who will be available for the Browns in the third round, but there obviously should be countless possibilities for them in that slot.
For what it’s worth, the following prospects either had pre-draft visits or private workouts with the Browns and are projected to be picked in the third-round range: San Diego State tight end Gavin Escobar, Louisiana State cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, South Carolina safety D.J. Swearinger, Florida inside linebacker Jon Bostic, Arizona quarterback Matt Scott and Rutgers cornerback Logan Ryan.
Here are some notes from the Browns about the first round: