Originally Posted by Carbine
Do you have confidence in Greg Little being a number 1 caliber wideout, RBA?
I only ask because while drafting a wideout in the first round is nice, and surely would be a welcomed route by Brown's fans....is it all that smart? Haven't there been enough examples of mid to later round wideouts becoming very good, even great players? More so than probably any other position?
No, I don't have any confidence in Greg Little ever becoming a viable WR1, which is why I'm so adament about us getting a true game-breaking receiver early in this draft.
You are right that there are plenty of examples of really great receivers being had after Round 1, but look at the absolute best WRs in the game, year-in and year-out... Calvin Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald and Andre Johnson. All of these guys were high first round picks.
I feel like we've tried to get one of those incredible bargains at WR later in the draft for the last few years and haven't been successful. This year, there are three guys that are pretty clearly above the rest... Blackmon, Jeffery and Floyd.
If we were able to get any of these three, I would be incredibly happy... However, even within this group, I feel there is a gap between Blackmon and the other two. He reminds me of a more rangy Greg Jennings. I've been enamored by this guy since the beginning of the 2010 season and now we may be in position to get him.
If we drafted Blackmon and took care of the right side of our line, I feel that THEN it would be fair to judge McCoy's performances as an indicator of whether or not he will succeed as a starting QB.
With the team that we had last year, I honestly think that you could put Tom Brady out there and he wouldn't have a ton more success. Our guys just cannot get separation. If your WRs literally cannot get open, what is a QB supposed to do? Of course, he is supposed to check-down, run, take the sack or throw it away... None of those choices are all that appealing.
No, I don't think that the QB was the problem this season. He may not be the answer, but I don't know that for sure yet... And I want to be sure before we spend the No. 4 overall pick on a risky replacement.
I do think that Greg Little could become a nice WR2 and MoMass could even be a viable WR3 if they had a guy across the field like Blackmon or Floyd or Jeffery. I think people would be shocked by the leaps that Browns offense would take with that kind of threat on the field.
I'd love to stumble into a Mike Wallace later on in the draft, but I sort of feel like, if that were going to happen, it would have already happened with Little, Robiskie or MoMass. Now, it is time to go after the clear stud.
Hey, I'm not opposed to taking WRs with BOTH of our first round picks.
That is how week our receiving corps are. I would be fired up about a Blackmon/Floyd tandem with Little moving to the WR3 slot.
I can't emphasize enough just how badly this team needs talent on the outside.
Originally Posted by SCY
Well I think the Top 10 finish is pretty misleading for the reasons I mentioned. I do agree that it is the best unit on the team by far and needs less attention than the O, but it's still an average D overall IMO.
Well, we can get away from the general statements about the defense and focus on the individuals that are actually out there...
Start with the defensive line...
LDE -Jabaal Sheard
DT - Phil Taylor
DT - Ahtyba Rubin
RDE - Jayme Mitchell
That is a very nice, very young defensive front. Taylor and Rubin are one of the best young inside tandems in the entire league. Jabaal Sheard just had a rookie season in which he led all rookie defensive linemen in sacks (8.5) and he is a complete and total stud... A possible future star in this league. Mitchell impressed me toward the end of last season. He has a nice motor and he is also relatively young (6th season). There is certainly no reason to address this unit early in the draft... It is stout.
SLB - Chris Gocong
MLB - D'Qwell Jackson
WLB - Kaluka Maiava
The weakest part of our defense is probably these outside linebackers. But, that said, Gocong showed some things in the second half of the season and Maiava is still young enough to become something in this league. D'Qwell, meanwhile, truly is amongst the best MLBs in the NFL and he should have gotten serious consideration for the Pro Bowl after the year he had. He led the NFL in solo tackles and led all MLBs in tackles for loss.
Could we use an explosive WLB and use Maiava as a backup? Sure. But, that isn't exactly a dire need at the moment.
LCB - Joe Haden
RCB - Sheldon Brown
SS - TJ Ward
FS - Mike Adams
Haden, Ward and Adams make up a very young, very good core in the secondary. Haden is as good as it gets for young CBs and Ward, while injured this past season, has shown that he can be the kind of dynamite SS that the AFC North is known for. Mike Adams really impressed me this past season, as did young Usama Young, who filled in admirably for Ward for the majority of the season. The weak link is Sheldon Brown, only because he is probably a bit too long in the tooth to be a full-time corner in the NFL.
Yeah, we could use another excellent young CB to put across from Haden, but it isn't exactly a necessity. The reason that this unit excelled in coverage wasn't because teams were having "too much success running the ball to bother throwing." It is because this unit was really, really good, especially Haden, who was going against the other team's best WRs all season and, more often than not, closing the door on them.
So, in summation, the two areas on the defense where we could use some help in the draft is RCB and OLB. However, when you have this much young talent on a defense, they can make up for a couple of deficiencies in a couple of spots.
The Browns were the youngest team in the entire NFL last year, with 1/3 of the roster being in either their first or second year. This defensive unit is the main reason why... And, they performed well under difficult circumstances. They will continue to get better, too.
A similar breakdown of the offense would yield much more troubling results.