I’ve always said mock drafts, while fun, are stupid. They are. Anyone come across one that had the Browns selecting Phil Taylor? Didn’t think so.
It’s fun to get a general idea of what players could potentially be available when your team goes on the clock, but no one really knows. Draft speculation and the mock drafts have dramatically increased over the years, evidenced by the fact ESPN’s Todd McShay already has a 2012 mock draft available.
The top overall selection? Your Cleveland Browns selecting Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck.
Now I’ve heard people say Luck is the next “can’t miss” prospect and I know he’s already drawing (ridiculous/unfair) comparisons to Peyton Manning. On that front, I’d like to have him on my team.
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I know we have two first round picks in next April’s NFL Draft, but I’m telling you right now there is NO way the Browns hold the first pick in the 2012 NFL Draft.
Unless there is a lockout for the entire 2011 season and the draft order is randomly drawn, the Browns will not hold the top overall pick. They are far from the worst team in the NFL.
I don’t buy the argument that putting Cam Newton on the Carolina Panthers – playing two games a year against division foes Atlanta, New Orleans and Tampa Bay, all of whom won 10 games in 2010 – is a better team than the Browns. I know we narrowly edged them back in November when they came to Cleveland Browns Stadium, but we’re better than the Carolina Panthers.
We’re not the worst team in our own division, let alone the National Football League. Does Cincinnati scare anybody? The Browns and Bengals split in 2010, but the good guys are up and coming and the Bengals are old and leaving. Who knows if Carson Palmer or Chad Ochocinco will be back next season. Does it matter? A.J. Green can play, and we all know that, but is anybody scared about playing Andy Dalton twice a year? I’ll take Colt McCoy over Dalton every day of the week and twice on Sunday, regardless of where they were drafted.
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Are we worse than Buffalo? Arizona? What about the teams that drafted quarterbacks like Tennessee, Jacksonville and San Francisco? I like the 49ers and I understand the other two teams have running backs that are fantasy football studs, but hey, we have the feature back who will appear on the cover of Madden 2012.
Mock drafts are supposed to be exciting, and I guess by looking at McShay’s and reacting with a sense of anger about how dumb it is, I’m being a bit hypocritical. I just don’t see the Cleveland Browns, barring a blockbuster trade or a random drawing, ending up with the first pick next April.
Maybe Andrew Luck is the next big thing and will take teams to the Super Bowl. It won’t be the team in Cleveland.
The Browns aren’t there yet, but they’re headed in the right direction to the Super Bowl. My bet is 2011 shows an improved product that edges closer to the playoffs. Next April we can grab two more pieces and keep the train rolling. Without Andrew Luck.
This article originally appeared on LandLoyalty.com