After countless mock drafts, smoke screens, and speculation, the best players in college football have found their landing spots. The Cleveland Browns were the talk of the draft, holding the number one and four overall pick after going 0-16 last season. The Browns were obviously taking a QB with one of their picks, but the question was which one.
That question was answered Thursday night, as Cleveland surprised some and took the former Oklahoma walk-on Baker Mayfield as the first person off the board. Cleveland had not been tied to Mayfield until the morning of the draft, after Wyoming QB Josh Allen had some old controversial tweets. Mayfield was the best QB in college football last season, taking OU all the way into the college football playoff and capturing the Heisman trophy.
Browns fans attending the draft had mixed reactions to this pick, but shouldn’t. Mayfield has drawn plenty of comparisons to former Browns first-round pick Johnny Manziel. Manziel took the college world by storm with his “Money Manziel” mantra back at Texas A&M. Manziel took over for Cleveland in his rookie year but didn’t live up to the hype and left the Browns after one season.
Mayfield ran into similar off the field issues that Manziel had in his college years, making NFL teams worry about if he can play in the league. I believe the comparisons are true but in the slightest. Mayfield has better arm strength than Johnny Manziel was way more trigger happy throwing the ball and a lot less disciplined with scrambling out of the pocket when pressured.
Baker Mayfield will also have more weapons than Manziel ever had. With the return of Josh Gordon, the new acquisition of Jarvis Landry from Miami, and Carlos Hyde in the backfield, the Browns look to make major improvements this upcoming season. Cleveland has nowhere to go but up after last season, they didn’t win a single game, posting a 0-16 record.