If Robert Griffin III had been coming out last year with the same perceived value as he has entering this year’s draft, and the price would have been the Browns’ 2011 first-rounder (the sixth overall pick) plus the next year’s first-round pick, the trade would have been a no-brainer. Yet when accounting for last year’s draft day trade with the Atlanta Falcons, that’s essentially the exact price at which the Browns balked in losing the chance to land the quarterback out of Baylor whom the NFL Network’s Mike Mayock calls “the best throwing athlete [that's] come out in a while … far better than Michael Vick … far better than Cam Newton.”
It took the Washington Redskins two extra first-rounders and an extra second-rounder to move up from #6 to #2 in last weekend’s blockbuster trade that will land them RG3. Last year, the Browns received an extra first-rounder and an extra second-rounder to move down from #6 in the draft day trade with Atlanta, so all Cleveland would have had to add to that haul was an additional first-rounder, basically, the same price the franchise paid for the right to move up to draft Bernie Kosar (and the same price the Giants paid to move up to select Eli Manning).
Had it been the Browns and not the Redskins that traded two first-rounders and a second-rounder to move up to select RG3, folks wouldn’t have been writing all weekend about how the Rams’ trading partner took a desperate shot, or about how so much pressure has been transferred to the young quarterback from a coaching staff on the hot seat. Instead they’d have been writing (they’d still be writing) about how the Browns had set themselves up perfectly for this trade by way of last year’s trade with the Falcons, and finally landed a franchise quarterback. They’d be calling Tom Heckert and Mike Holmgren geniuses. A measly one draft without a first-rounder would have been nothing. It would be full blown Code Orange RG3 mania with no end in sight. Even another 4-12 season wouldn’t have slowed it down as long as Griffin looked like 25% of what folks say he’s going to look like.
The Browns had a loaded gun, as loaded as a gun could be for a situation like this, and they didn’t shoot. Maybe it works out? Anyway, in Holmgren we trust, derp derp derp derp derp.
Also, please pass us some of what Mary Kay is having:
Hey, Mary Kay: I read enough mock drafts that it gives me heartburn to think about it anymore. So who do you think the Browns will get? — Jeremy Cohen, Dallas, Texas
Hey, Jeremy: With RG3 set to go to Washington at No. 2, I’d explore a trade down from No. 4 and perhaps pick up Texas A&M quarterback Ryan Tannehill with a later pick. Some teams might love Justin Blackmon enough to make the Browns a blockbuster offer like the Falcons did last year. They can still come back at No. 22 and grab a receiver such as a Michael Floyd or Stephen Hill.
Since it worked out so well for the Falcons? Um, nobody’s trading up for Blackmon, especially not with Floyd and Hill on the board. Don’t think anyone has ever traded up to draft a cornerback either. We’ll be surprised if the Browns are able to move out of #4. Threading the needle to trade down and land Tannehill is even more unlikely. Um, Tannehill.
Frowns NCAA tournament bracket pool details will be posted tomorrow. $20 to enter. Hope everyone’s week gets off to a decent start.