May 9, 2014; Berea, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns first round draft picks Justin Gilbert (Oklahoma State) and Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M) are introduced to the media with head coach Mike Pettine (left) and general Manager Ray Farmer (left) at the Cleveland Browns Headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Cleveland Browns 2014 NFL Draft Review

Their 2014 NFL draft only lasted four rounds but did the Cleveland Browns make their picks count?

Round 1 – #8 – Justin Gilbert – CB – Oklahoma State

The only thing better than a shutdown corner is two shutdown corners.  Joe Haden now has a wingman in Justin Gilbert, whose freakish speed, length and athleticism given him higher ceiling at corner than anybody else in the 2014 NFL draft.

Round 1 – #22 – Johnny Manziel – QB – Texas A&M

A lot of people were surprised that Johnny Manziel fell all the way to the 22nd pick and the Cleveland Browns were wisely the ones who went and got him.  For all his doubters and question marks the kid is a playmaker with a ridiculous competitive streak that can galvanize a franchise long bereft of anything like him.

Round 2 – #35 – Joel Bitonio – OT – Nevada

One of the more versatile offensive lineman in the draft.  Joel Bitonio played left tackle at Nevade, has the length and power for right tackle and the size to kick inside to guard.  There are few faults to his game and he can start right away.

Round 3 – #71 – Christian Kirksey – OLB – Iowa

Mike Pettine likes athletes at linebacker and Christian Kirksey is most definitely an athlete.  He thrives in space chasing down ball carriers with experience in coverage.  A team leader with upside.

Round 3 – #94 – Terrance West – RB – Towson

He carried an entire program on his back in 2013 and Terrance West didn’t even flinch.  Plenty of size for the position but great feet to keep his balance when making cuts or getting hit.  A great insurance policy for Ben Tate.

Round 4 – #127 – Pierre Desir – CB – Lindenwood

More development will be required of him but Pierre Desir is another long cornerback with very intriguing athletic potential.  He flashed it constantly at the Senior Bowl and isn’t in awe of NFL competition.  Given enough time he’s another solid piece added to that secondary.

Grade:  A

The only reason this isn’t an A+ is because the Cleveland Browns did not address the receiver position even in spite of the Josh Gordon news.  Otherwise every pick they made landed on a potential impact player for now and in the future.

Dick's Sporting Goods presents "Hell Week":

Tags: 2014 Nfl Draft Christian Kirksey Cleveland Browns Joel Bitonio Johnny Manziel Justin Gilbert Pierre Desir Terrance West

  • TheSportologist

    Homer maybe?

    • Erik Lambert

      Not at all.

      • John Duquette

        Definitely not Homer Simpson but wildly optimistic I too loved the creativity but the heck we are all Browns fanatics and homers so we can all be wildly optimistic..

  • Josh Hart

    Love what they did with the 1st pick in trading back and gaining a 1st next year. Hate that they wasted a 5th this year to move up one spot then. After that the draft was meh for me. I like most of the players, but question some of the trades to get them. I also don’t understand the complete neglect of a WR, which was needed before the Gordon news, in one of the best WR classes in history. I guess the defense should at least be better this year.

  • paulbip

    I agree with you Erik. Though I’m a big Mack fan, getting a 1 and 4 was a great trade. You also figure that the Browns would not have been able to get a top corner without the trade. I’m not a Manziel guy, but now you could consider him a free pick since you have the 1 next year to back him up. So if he busts, it was a nice try but not devastating The OL guy was the last of the very top linemen and you had to take him at 2. So you have two big holes filled with premium players and a possible very good QB in the first two rounds. The cover LB will allow Mingo to rush the passer now and we will see if he is a bust or not this year. Running back was another big need also. Remember that I graded last years draft F with Mingo and McFadden as busts so you can see that I’m not a homer also.

    • Erik Lambert

      It’s a good draft. It really is. They took quality over quantity though I still wonder what they plan to do at receiver. Maybe a trade? Otherwise their roster got a lot better.