After a pair of Day One trades, the Browns moved up to the 21st pick in the 2011 NFL Draft and selected former Baylor University defensive tackle Phil Taylor.
Taylor, who was introduced by Browns running back
“I stop the run, I’m a run-stuffing defensive tackle and I can get a pass-rush as well,” said Taylor. “Going to the next level is a tough task, but I’m going to take it all in. I’ll work hard and do what I need to do to get on the field.”
The Browns traded the 27th overall pick and a third round selection (No. 70 overall) to the Kansas City Chiefs in order to select Taylor.
During his time in college, Taylor gained experience as both a strong-side defensive tackle (nine starts) and nose guard (13 starts). While at Baylor, Taylor earned second-team All-Big 12 Conference honors as a senior.
Taylor transferred to Baylor after spending 2006 and 2007 at Penn State and brought a lot of raw athleticism with him. During his campus agility tests, he ran the 40-yard dash in 5.26 seconds, had a 22-inch vertical leap and recorded 35 repetitions on the 225-pound bench press, with a max of 455 pounds.
“We really like Phil Taylor and think he’s a good football player,” said Browns General Manager Tom Heckert. “He’s obviously a huge man and with him and (Ahtyba) Rubin inside, we’re going to be tough inside. It was too risky for us not to get him.”
“There’s absolutely no question he can,” Coach Pat Shurmur added about Taylor starting as a rookie. “He’s got size; he can play the run; he has pass-rush ability inside and when you’re putting together a four-three line, to have two big bodies inside like we now have is going to be good for us.”
The Browns started Thursday night with the No. 6 overall pick and elected to trade that selection to the Atlanta Falcons. In exchange for the sixth selection, the Browns received the 27th, 59th and 124th picks in the 2011 Draft, in addition to the first and fourth round choices in the 2012 Draft from the Falcons.
“We talked about it before, if we thought something was really, really intriguing to us where we could add more players, we were going to do it,” said Heckert. “We’re not saying we’re one player away. There were some good players, but we thought with what we got for the pick was too much to turn down and we felt really good about it.”
The Browns are scheduled to make to picks in the second round Friday evening. The 37th selection is based on the Browns’ 5-11 finish in 2010 and the 59th came from the Falcons.
Here is a recap of the first round picks of the 2010 NFL Draft:
2011 NFL Draft First Round
1. Carolina Panthers-Cam Newton (QB/Auburn)
2. Denver Broncos-Von Miller (LB/Texas A&M)
3. Buffalo Bills-Marcell Dareus (DT/Alabama)
4. Cincinnati Bengals-A.J. Green (WR/Georgia)
5. Arizona Cardinals-Patrick Peterson (CB/LSU)
6. Atlanta Falcons (from Cleveland Browns)-Julio Jones (WR/Alabama)
7. San Francisco 49ers-Aldon Smith (DE/Missouri)
8. Tennessee Titans-Jake Locker (QB/Washington)
9. Dallas Cowboys-Tyron Smith (OT/Southern California)
10. Jacksonville Jaguars (from Washington Redskins)-Blaine Gabbert (QB/Missouri)
11. Houston Texans-J.J. Watt (DE/Wisconsin)
12. Minnesota Vikings-Christian Ponder (QB/Florida State)
13. Detroit Lions-Nick Fairley (DT/Auburn)
14. St. Louis Rams-Robert Quinn (DE/North Carolina)
15. Miami Dolphins-Mike Pouncey (OL/Florida)
16. Washington Redskins (from Jacksonville Jaguars)-Ryan Kerrigan (DE/Purdue)
17. New England Patriots-Nate Solder (OT/Colorado)
18. San Diego Chargers-Corey Liuget (DT/Illinois)
19. New York Giants-Prince Amukamara (CB/Nebraska)
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers-Adrian Clayborn (DE/Iowa)
21. Cleveland Browns (from Kansas City Chiefs)-Phil Taylor (DT/Baylor)
22. Indianapolis Colts-Anthony Costanzo (OT/Boston College)
23. Philadelphia Eagles-Danny Watkins (G/Baylor)
24. New Orleans Saints-Cameron Jordan (DE/California)
25. Seattle Seahawks-James Carpenter (OT/Alabama)
26. Kansas City Chiefs (from Cleveland Browns)-Jonathan Baldwin (WR/Pittsburgh)
27. Baltimore Ravens-Jimmy Smith (CB/Colorado)
28. New Orleans Saints (from New England Patriots)-Mark Ingram (RB/Alabama)
29. Chicago Bears-Gabe Carimi (OL/Wisconsin)
30. New York Jets-Muhammad Wilkerson (DT/Temple)
31. Pittsburgh Steelers-Cameron Heyward (DE/Ohio State)
32. Green Bay Packers-Derek Sherrod (OT/Mississippi State)