Apr 27, 2023 - Sports

How the Browns fumbled the 2018 NFL Draft

He was no Johnny Manziel. Photo: Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The NFL Draft begins Thursday, but the Browns don’t have a first or second-round pick.

  • So, we decided to travel back to the 2018 draft when Cleveland had a chance to alter its future but fumbled.

Flashback: The Browns secured the No. 1 overall pick after going 0-16 during the 2017 season.

  • The team also held the fourth pick via a trade with the Houston Texans, who moved up to draft quarterback Deshaun Watson in 2017.

The intrigue: Most experts favored USC quarterback Sam Darnold to go first.

  • However, the Browns took reigning Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield.

Meanwhile, the Browns selected cornerback Denzel Ward with the fourth pick.

  • The team landed star running back Nick Chubb in the second round.

The big picture: The Browns could have had quarterback Josh Allen, who went No. 7 to Buffalo and turned the Bills into Super Bowl contenders.

  • Ward has been solid, but Cleveland could also have drafted pass rusher (and Nick's cousin) Bradley Chubb at No. 4, pairing him with 2017 No. 1 pick Myles Garrett.

The bottom line: Mayfield had one winning season before the Browns traded him in 2022 after acquiring Watson.

  • Thus, fans can only dream of a roster led by Allen, Garrett and the Chubb cousins.

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