Tag Archives: NFL Draft

Cleveland Browns 2016 Offseason Media Schedule

Browns Helmet Sideways Photo

Date(s) Event

April 5  Offseason workouts

April 19-21 Voluntary veteran minicamp

April 22 Pre-draft availability

April 28-30 NFL Draft

May 13-15 Rookie minicamp

May 14 Fan Fest

May 18 OTA session #2

May 25 OTA session #5

June 1 OTA session #8

June 7-9 Mandatory veteran minicamp

TBD Training camp





If I’m Browns G.M. Ray Farmer and I believe that Marcus Mariota is indeed a franchise quarterback and is far better than any quarterback who will, or may be available in next year’s NFL Draft then I trade up to get him! Even if it means over paying for him.

I’m not saying I think Mariota is a franchise QB, because I don’t.

I’m saying if Farmer, head coach Mike Pettine and first year quarterback’s coach Kevin O’Connell, who was Mariota’s quarterback’s coach leading up to his pro day and the NFL Combine feel the 2014 Heisman Trophy winner is the real deal, then who cares what anybody else thinks, go get your QB!



Having said that, it I’m the Browns I’m keeping picks #12 and #19 and filling two HUGE needs on this football team.

At #12 the Browns, if any of these three wide receivers are left, should draft Amari Cooper, Kevin White or DeVante Parker. All three players would give the Browns passing game a much needed boost with size and speed on the outside and a nice target in the redzone! Any one of them would help whoever is playing quarterback for Cleveland in 2015.

At #19 the Browns need to find some help at stopping the run. If either of these defensive linemen are available then Ray Farmer shouldn’t waste any time in turning in one of their names to commissioner Roger Goodell at the podium – Danny Shelton or Malcom Brown. Neither is a sexy pick, but Shelton or Brown would help immediately in containing the opposition’s ground attack and from their dead last ranking out of all 32 teams last year, the Browns are in dire need of that run stopper!



If all three of the above mentioned wide outs are gone at #12, then the Browns should draft Danny Shelton or Malcom Brown there and then take the best available wide receiver at #19.

Possible candidates there could be: Breshad Perriman, Jaelen Strong, Sammie Coates or Devin Smith from the Ohio State University. Smith would be considered a reach at #19, but he probably won’t be around at #43 in the second round when the Browns pick. So if you’re looking for someone to take the top off of opposing defenses in the passing game and for a standout special team’s gunner, then reaching that high for Smith would be the way to go.


Dan Shonka from Ourlads.com, a scouting service that has been breaking down college player for the NFL Draft for 33 years, came away impressed with Browns G.M. Ray Farmer and his 2014 Draft!

Ourlads Photo


Johnny Manziel responds to the questions I wanted answers to at his first press conference at Browns headquarters in Berea on 5-9-14. (Roda Edit)

Johnny Manziel Browns SI Cover Photo


The Browns organization did a great job in the draft of maneuvering back up in the first round of the NFL Draft to select Johnny Manziel, but how they’ve handled some things since then off the field, lets just say, they need to learn from their mistakes already.

Manziel-Gilbert-Farmer-Pettine Jersey Photo


With “Manziel Mania” running rampant in Cleveland like “‘Johnny Football” across SEC fields over the last two years I started thinking about Manziel’s career in college and it led me to think about another heralded SEC quarterback named Tim Tebow.

Manziel vs Tebow Photo

Like Manziel, Tebow ran and threw the ball and brought excitement to the college football world both on and off the field.  Like Manziel, people questioned whether Tebow’s style of play could make it in the NFL. Was he a good enough passer? Could he play under center and read defenses? Could he understand to be successful in the league he would have to run less and throw more? Then I started wondering why will “Manziel Mania” be any different than “Tebow Mania”? What gives “TMZ Johnny” a better chance to make it over “Genuflecting Tim”? Will he last longer in the NFL than the three years that Tebow played? If so, why? Are these comparisons fair?

So I decided to go back and look at the first two years that both Tebow and Manziel started at quarterback at their respective colleges in the SEC. There are a lot of similar results that link these two together, and I think fairly raises the question, why will Manziel, drafted 22nd in the first round by the Browns in 2014  make it in the NFL, when Tebow, who was drafted 25th in the first round by the Broncos in 2010,  only lasted 3 years?


(Remember these are stats and facts from the first two years as a starting quarterback only)

TIM TEBOW                                                                          JOHNNY MANZIEL

6’3 – 236 pounds                                                                         5’11 – 205 pounds

Played in the SEC at Florida                                                   Played in the Sec at Texas A&M

Gesture – “Tebowing”                                                               Gesture – “Getting Paid”

1st sophomore to win the Heisman                                        1st freshman to win the Heisman

Won 1 National Title                                                                    Did not win a National Title

Won 1 SEC Title                                                                            Did not win an SEC Title

2-Time first team All-American                                                1-Time first team All-American

2-Time first team All-SEC                                                         2-Time first team All-SEC

1st year as a starter 32TD passes                                          1st year as a starter 26TD passes

1st year as a starter 23 rush TD’s                                         1st year as a starter 21 rush TD’s

Total TD’s in first year (53)                                                       Total TD’s in first year (47)

1st year as a starter 3,286yrds passing                       1st year as a starter 3,706yrds passing

1st year as a starter 895yrds  rushing                        1st year as a starter 1,410yrds rushing

1st year total yards 4,181 yards                                            1st year total yards 5,116 yards

First 2 years as a starter 62 TD passes                        First 2 years as a starter 63 TD passes

First 2 years as a starter 35 rushing TD’s              First 2 years as a starter 30 rushing TD’s

Total TD’s in first 2 years (97)                                              Total TD’s in first two years (93)

Total INT’s thrown first 2 years (10)                         Total INT’s thrown in first 2 years (22)

66% completion percentage first 2 years                  69% completion percentage first 2 years

Total passing yards first 2 years (6,033)             Total passing yards in first 2 years (7,820)

Total rush yards first 2 years (1,568)              Total rush yards in first 2 years (2,169 yards)

Total yards in first 2 years (7,601)                                Total yards in first 2 years (9,989)


Both played with heart, desire and passion at the college level. Both were great leaders on the field. But after looking at the numbers and information provided above, is there anything that really stands out as to why Johnny Manziel has a chance to be a better quarterback in the NFL than Tim Tim Tebow? I’m not saying Manziel will. I’m not saying he won’t. I’m just presenting you with comparable information and stats for the two players and would love to hear your reasons why you believe one way or another. Let me know here at www.KennyRoda.com or on Twitter @TheKennyRoda.


Here’s my team-by-team grade and breakdown of the picks made by all the AFC North GM’s.

AFC North Helmets Photo



Bleacher Report – (B+)

All the offseason tumult settled down for the Cleveland Browns, and Ray Farmer was left sitting in the general manager’s seat when the dust settled. He had plenty of work to do if he was going to turn the Browns from perennial pariah to contender anytime soon. He got off to a hot start in the first round.

The Browns made a great move to trade down, nabbing future first- and fourth-round picks from the Buffalo Bills to move down five spots. Then they pulled a bit of a head-scratcher to move up one spot and take cornerback Justin Gilbert out of Oklahoma State when it was unlikely the Minnesota Vikings would have selected him. Of course, the big news—at least out of the first day of the draft—was Farmer’s move to nab former Aggie Johnny Manziel, the most electrifying and polarizing quarterback in the draft.

The Browns announced season-ticket sales soared after the first round, which is proof positive that some players do sell tickets. The rest of the draft, however, was no picnic.

Just before the second round started, bombshell news broke that Josh Gordon is facing a yearlong suspension, per T.J. Quinn and Don Van Natta Jr. of ESPN.com. Speculation immediately sprung up that Cleveland would take a receiver or two. Instead, Farmer avoided the position altogether.

Outside of snagging talented small-school cornerback Pierre Desir out of Lindenwood, the rest of the draft was a letdown for Farmer and Browns fans.


SI.Com – (B+)

The first day of the draft may have been among the most exciting stretches in franchise history, what with a trade down and then two trades up, netting the Browns CB Justin Gilbert and QB Johnny Manziel. There was talent found after that, as well, namely versatile OL Joel Bitonio and CB Pierre Desir — the latter a remarkable value at No. 127 overall. RB Terrance West is a sleeper. But Desir was Cleveland’s final pick, and there was nary a receiver to be found among the previous five choices.


SBNation.com (B-)

The Browns were the story of the first day of the draft, trading three times in the first round. The Gilbert selection was the pick head coach Mike Pettine wanted. Manziel was likely the one general manager Ray Farmer and owner Jimmy Haslam wanted. Those picks give Cleveland some identity. But the Browns needed a wide receiver even before the news about Josh Gordon came out. To pass on the position was puzzling. There were some very good options when Kirksey was the pick in the third round. West is a perfect backup for Ben Tate. He wins with power running and vision. Desir has upside and will push Buster Skrine.

CBSSports.com (B-)

I loved the move to go up and get Johnny Manziel in the first, but why pass on receiver with the Josh Gordon situation? I don’t get that at all. They took a corner with their first first-round pick Justin Gilbert instead of a receiver. That drops the grade for me. They did get a 2015 first-round pick from Buffalo.


YahooSports.com (A)

Yahoo Sports Browns 2014 Draft


WalterFootball.com (C+)

Goals Entering the 2014 NFL Draft: The Browns haven’t made the playoffs since the 2002 season. They also haven’t had a franchise quarterback since their franchise reentered the NFL in 1999. It’s time for that to change. They have to find a signal-caller who can transform them into a perennial playoff contender. Otherwise, they need to find another offensive play-maker, upgrade the offensive line and bolster a couple of positions on the defense.

2014 NFL Draft Accomplishments: Cleveland’s draft is very difficult to grade. On one hand, the Johnny Manziel selection was excellent. No one would have been too upset if the team had taken him at No. 4, but being able to secure him with the second choice was brilliant. The Browns sold 2,000 season tickets within the first 48 hours, and their franchise was in the national discussion for the first time in more than a decade. Manziel is the play-making superstar Cleveland desperately needed.

On the other hand, what the hell are the Browns going to do at receiver in the wake of Josh Gordon’s impending suspension? They shouldn’t have taken Sammy Watkins at No. 4 because they were able to obtain a 2015 first-round choice in the process – another terrific move – but why not grab Marqise Lee at No. 35? How about moving up from No. 71 to obtain Allen Robinson, Davante Adams or Jordan Matthews? Or, what about Martavis Bryant, Donte Moncrief, Cody Latimer or Paul Richardson at other junctures? It’s impossible that the Browns didn’t like a single wideout in this loaded class. Other teams took receivers, so why didn’t Cleveland, considering the circumstances?

Again, this is a tough grade. I was ready to give the Browns an “A” after the first day, but they bombed the rest of the process. They found some nice players like Terrence West and Pierre Desir, but they’ve ensured that their rookie signal-caller will struggle because he won’t have anyone to throw to.


AFC North Helmets Photo


CLEVELAND BROWNS   –   GM – Ray Farmer   –   Overall Grade   ( B-)

Manziel & Gilbert Questions Photo 2

1st – 8th –  Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State

1st – 22nd – Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M

2nd – 35th –  Joel Bitonio, OG, Nevada

3rd – 71st –  Christian Kirksey, OLB, Iowa

3rd – 94th – Terrance West, RB, Towson

4th – 127th – Pierre Desir, CB, Lindenwood

*(Picked up Buffalo’s 1st Round pick in the 2015 NFL Draft)


PITTSBURGH STEELERS   –   GM  –  Kevin Colbert   –   Overall Grade   (B+)

Ryan Shazier OSU Photo

1st – 15th –  Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State

2nd – 46th –  Stephon Tuitt, DT, Notre Dame

3rd – 97th –  Dri Archer, WR, Kent State

4th – 118th – Martavis Bryant, WR, Clemson

5th – 157th –  Shaquille Richardson, CB, Arizona

5th – 173rd –  Wesley Johnson, C, Vanderbilt

6th – 192nd – Jordan Zumwalt, OLB, UCLA

6th – 215th – Daniel McCullers, DT, Tennessee

7th – 230th –  Rob Blanchflower, TE, Massachusetts


BALTIMORE RAVENS   –   GM  –  Ozzie Newsome   –   Overall Grade   (B+)

1ST – 17TH – C.J. Mosley, ILB, Alabama

2nd – 48th –  Timmy Jernigan, DT, Florida State

3rd – 79th – Terrence Brooks, FS, Florida State

3rd – 99th –  Crockett Gillmore, TE, Colorado State

4th – 134th –  Brent Urban, DE, Virginia

4th – 138th –  Lorenzo Taliaferro, RB, Coastal Carolina

5th – 175th –  John Urschel, OG, Penn State

6th – 194th – Keith Wenning, QB, Ball State

7th – 218th –  Michael Campanaro, WR, Wake Forest


CINCINNATI BENGALS   –   GM   –   Mike Brown   –   Overall Grade   (B)

1st – 24th – Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan State

2nd – 55th –  Jeremy Hill, RB, LSU

3rd – 88th –  Will Clarke, DE, West Virginia

4th – 111th –  Russell Bodine, C, North Carolina

5th – 164th – AJ McCarron, QB, Alabama

6th – 212th –  Marquis Flowers, OLB, Arizona

7th – 239th –  James Wright, WR, LSU

7th – 252nd –  Lavelle Westbrooks, CB, Georgia Southern




Manziel-Gilbert-Farmer-Pettine Jersey Photo

1st – 8th –  Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State

Gilbert fills a need at cornerback opposite Joe Haden. He gives the Browns potentially the best cornerback tandem in the AFC North. A cover corner with long arms, a good vertical jump who always seems to be in good position and around the ball. Not a good tackler and needs some work on his technique and getting closer to receivers at the line of scrimmage for a better jam.  BONUS- A great return man who can take it the distance as he did 6 times in college.  –  Should be a starter from day one.


1st – 22nd – Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M

Like “Johnny Football”, the Browns maneuvered their way around the first round to come back and get who they hope will be their franchise quarterback of the future. A mobile, accurate QB with big hands, who was highly successful against the toughest competition on a week-in, week-out basis in the country. Has great leadership and plays with a lot of heart, desire, passion and was a playmaker in college. The big question is will his short stature allow him to make those same plays at the NFL level and can his smaller frame withstand the physical punishment of faster, quicker, stronger, more violent defenders in the NFL? It would be best for him to not be thrown to the wolves, especially considering the first game of the regular season is on the road at Pittsburgh. Sitting and learning for AT LEAST a half a season would be extremely beneficial to him.  –  But I could see if the Browns start the season 0-3 and head into their bye week winless, you might see him start the 4th game of the season at Tennessee.


2nd – 35th –  Joel Bitonio, OG, Nevada

Played left tackle in college but is probably better suited as an inside guy at guard, however his versatility is a major plus. When Mike Pettine was talking about getting tougher he had Bitonio in mind. Has a nasty steak in him which the Browns need.  –  Should be a starter from day one.


3rd – 71st –  Christian Kirksey, OLB, Iowa

Not a very powerful linebacker but has good athleticism, is quick, agile and a motor that never stops. Also a good cover backer. Needs to separate from blockers better.  –  Should start on special teams, but is 2nd or 3rd on the depth chart at linebacker.


3rd – 94th – Terrance West, RB, Towson

A power back that will get you the tough yards in short yardage situations. Prefers to deliver the blow as opposed to taking it, but that was against smaller competition, we’ll see if he’s able to do the same in the NFL. Has a good stiff arm, catches the ball well and has good feet. Ball security must improve again against stronger competition and needs to work on his blocking.  –  Has a chance to be Ben Tate’s backup right away.


4th – 127th – Pierre Desir, CB, Lindenwood

Was the small college defensive player of the year at Lindenwood. 25 career interceptions. Has good size at 6’1, plus long arms at 33 inches and enjoys contact. But is raw and didn’t play against elite competition often and when he did in the East-West Shrine and Senior Bowl he was very inconsistent.  –  Should help on special teams and the Browns will try and develop him in to a starter down the road.