The Browns' overall outlook for the 2022 NFL Draft has changed, but the list of needs they could attempt to fill with their seven picks has not.
Cleveland no longer holds a first-round pick. The Browns shipped their 13th overall pick to the Texans and five other picks — including first rounders in 2023 and 2024 — for three-time Pro Bowl QB Deshaun Watson. That means their first pick of the 2022 draft will be made in the second round at 44th overall.
The Browns entered the offseason with their biggest needs at wide receiver, defensive tackle and defensive end, and those positions are still spots the team could target early in the draft even after they acquired four-time Pro Bowl WR Amari Cooper, WR Jakeem Grant, DT Taven Bryan and DE Chase Winovich.
We're looking at some players who could be of interest when Day 2 begins and could be available to the Browns when they're finally on the clock.
DT Perrion Winfrey, Oklahoma
Winfrey could be one of the best players available on Day 2 and has steadily bumped his draft stock in recent months. He was the MVP of the Reese's Senior Bowl in February with two sacks and three tackles for a loss and finished his senior year with 23 tackles, 5.5 sacks and 11 tackles for a loss. NFL Network's Daniel Jeremiah said Winfrey “isn't a finished product but he has Pro Bowl potential” when he ranked him 49th on his most recent Top 50 draft prospects list from March 28.
DT DeMarvin Leal, Texas A&M
Leal posted big numbers with the Aggies last season (58 tackles, 12.5 tackles for a loss, 8.5 sacks) and has received some first-round grades by draft analysts. He could be a great value pick for the Browns if he's still available at 44th overall and is projected to fit best in a 4-3 scheme, which the Browns deploy with their defensive line.
The Browns have already made numerous additions this offseason, adding WR Amari Cooper, QB Deshaun Watson, WR Jakeem Grant, DE Chase Winovich and DT Taven Bryan.
DT Travis Jones, UConn
Jones has generated some first-round hype but could still be available at pick No. 44. He totaled 48 tackles with the Huskies last season and, at 6-foot-4 and 325 pounds, projects primarily as a big, reliable run-stuffer.
DT Logan Hall, Houston
Hall compiled six sacks in his final college season and could make sense for the Browns in the second or even third round, if he's still available. Jeremiah ranked Hall 50th on his prospect list and said he "is a long, rangy defensive tackle with room to add weight" — Hall is 6-foot-6 and 275 pounds. Jeremiah also said Hall could benefit from a move to defensive end, where he could still plug one of the Browns' needs.
WR John Metchie III, Alabama
Metchie totaled 1,142 receiving yards and eight touchdowns in his final college season and is projected to be a quality slot receiver with his 6-foot, 200-pound frame. His target shares were limited in his earlier years with the Crimson Tide since he shared a room with Jaylen Waddle, DeVonta Smith and Henry Ruggs III, but he proved last season that he can produce in a bigger role.
WR David Bell, Purdue
Bell's draft stock took a bit of a hit at the Combine when he ran a slower-than-expected 4.65 at the 40-yard dash and scored poorly in some of the other agility drills. His college stats, however, still speak well to his game — he compiled 1,286 receiving yards and six touchdowns last season and scored 21 touchdowns across three college seasons.
DE Boye Mafe, Minnesota
Mafe cashed in seven sacks and 10 tackles for a loss last season and flashed speed at the Combine with a 4.53 40-yard dash. He isn't currently projected to go in the first round but still has the high ceiling the Browns would covet in the second round.
DE Arnold Ebiketie, Penn State
Ebiketie transferred from Temple to Penn State for his senior season and made the most of the move by posting a career-best 9.5 sacks last season. NFL.com's Lance Zierlein said Ebiketie “is quiet to the edge with accurate, active hands and a pressure percentage worthy of projection.”
TE Trey McBride, Colorado State
Tight end could be of interest for the Browns after the departure of TE Austin Hooper, and McBride is considered the best TE of the draft class after he won the John Mackey Award — given to the best TE in the nation — in 2021. The Browns already have one Mackey Award winner on their roster in Harrison Bryant, but tight ends play a big role in their offense, and they could be intrigued at the idea of adding another.
LB Christian Harris, Alabama
Harris was projected to the Browns in
Ryan Wilson’s most recent mock draft. He recorded 80 tackles and 5.5 sacks last season as a linebacker and made most of his plays from the perimeter, which could mean a switch to defensive end in the NFL.