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2020 NFL Draft

What the Browns do at No. 32 depends on Day One

CHICAGO — A bevy of NFL Network analysts previewed the draft Wednesday afternoon at the network's luncheon in Chicago.

One of the more popular questions?

"Just talking to friends around the league, they're like 'what's Cleveland going to do? What's Cleveland going to do?'" Daniel Jeremiah said.

"Nobody knows what Cleveland's going to do and everybody's fascinated by it. I think they're in the position, though, to get a big time player."

Here's what Jeremiah, Mike Mayock, Bucky Brooks and others had to say about what the Browns could do starting Thursday night.

What happens at No. 32?

With 12 draft picks, the Browns are in what Mayock called a position of strength.

"The whole thing about all the picks they have, it gives them a freedom that not every team has. They have a ton of picks and they have a ton of needs," he said.

"So you don't have to sit there and say we have to get this guy at No. 8 and this guy at No. 32. You can sit there and say, 'How does the board fall, and how does that match up with our priorities as an organization' and then pull the trigger."

Against that backdrop, Cleveland also has something of a dealing power when it comes to what it wants to do with the No. 32 pick.

"That pick has a lot of currency, that pick means a lot of things," Brooks said.

"I think it depends on who's on the board. What typically happens in a front office is, after that first night, you reset and look at the players who are available. Is there a first-round talent that we want to get? Or is it more valuable to pawn it off? We've seen at the top of the draft on the second day, a lot of people trade because it's very valuable."

Jeremiah echoed a similar sentiment.

"The way it works is you finish up Day 1 and the scouts stay after and you go, 'OK who's our highest rated player' and you get all ready for the next day, and a lot of times, there's a player that sticks out like a sore thumb, you may have the 16th-best player in the draft and he's still there," he said.

"And you get a night to sleep on it and then go make it happen."

Of course, the Browns have a plethora of options at No. 32 and executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown last week wouldn't rule out another trade as Cleveland continues to build up its roster through the draft.

Lots to like about Myles Jack, so long as his knee is healthy

Considered one of the most versatile players in this year's draft class, Jack is something of a "jack of all trades." The UCLA linebacker can do it all on defense and even played some running back here and there for the Bruins.

But questions remain over whether Jack will face issues down the line following surgery to repair a torn meniscus that forced him to miss most of last season.

Still, Brooks and others were high on what Jack brings to the table.

"If his medical was clean, he'd be one of the top two picks in the draft. He has an alpha dog personality, he's a natural leader and he's a big-time playmaker who can make plays sideline to sideline," Brooks said. "He's everything you look for in the position."

Wait on the WRs

That's at least what Brooks thinks.

"I don't think there's a receiver worthy of taking in the top 10 because when we're saying top 10, this guy has to be a perennial Pro Bowler, a guy that within the first two or three years, he's one of the best at the position," Brooks said.

"And I don't know if there's a guy in this draft that does that."

While Ole Miss' Laquon Treadwell, TCU's Josh Doctson and Baylor's Corey Coleman have emerged as potential first-round draft picks, there lacks a consensus on whether or not they're elite talent worthy of the top 10.

"I believe at No. 8 you can take another position, and at No. 32, you can come back and get one of those guys. Maybe one of those receivers we expect to come off in the first round is there. See what the board does, and then just follow the board."

The Browns could conceivably take someone like Ohio State's Michael Thomas, Notre Dame's Will Fuller or Pittsburgh's Tyler Boyd, who are expected to be around on Day Two in Chicago.

'Defenses win championships'

Former Chicago Bears receiver and NFL Network analyst Curtis Conway made his way through the league by becoming a go-to offensive weapon. So he gets why you might think it's strange he thinks the Browns should take a defensive player in the first round.

"I know I'm a receiver, but I believe defenses win championships and I think that you can't have enough defensive front four guys, whether that be one-techniques, three-techniques, defensive ends," Conway said.

"Because if you look at Denver and Seattle, they've won up front on the defensive side of the ball. So I think if they went defense — especially on the line — I think that's a big bet you'll look down the future and you won't regret it in the long run."

With the No. 8 pick, the Browns could have several options to take a defensive lineman, be it Ohio State's Joey Bosa or Oregon's DeForest Buckner. There's also a handful of talented linemen projected to go later in the first round and on Day Two, including Clemson's Shaq Lawson, Ole Miss' Robert Nkemdiche, Eastern Kentucky's Noah Spence and Michigan State's Shilique Calhoun.

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