In the middle of the week, the rumbles started to grow of Mayfield being the pick for the Browns. I heard from some staff at other teams, but wasn't sure if Mayfield/Browns was legit or a smokescreen. As we get closer to the 2018 NFL Draft, it sounds like Mayfield is Cleveland's choice. I can see where Mayfield is similar to Tyrod Taylor, so the Browns wouldn't have to change their offense when they turn it over to Mayfield. Mayfield's mobility, accuracy, ball security, and leadership/passion for the game I think are what could have won Cleveland over. <br> <br>
Team sources told me that Mayfield did well in his interviews at the combine and that they liked how he threw the ball in his field work there. His teammates raved about him as well. Mayfield (6-0, 216) is a gritty gunslinger who has an "it factor" to his game. He doesn't have elite arm strength, but his arm is good enough to make the throws required in the NFL. One of Mayfield's most impressive strengths as a passer is being able to locate the ball well and throw receivers open. He is very good with his timing and trajectory on passes to hit receivers on the run and set them up for lots of yards after the catch. Mayfield is very skilled to loft in touch passes downfield and throws a very catchable ball. He has excellent mobility to dodge sacks, escape pressure and extend plays with his feet, plus he throws well on the run.<br> <br>
Sources say Mayfield can have issues reading defenses, and his field vision needs to improve. He can struggle to throw the ball in tight windows when being forced to operate out of the pocket. One big area of focus for Mayfield is his footwork as he gets happy feet in the pocket. <br> <br>
Mayfield completed 71 percent of his passes in 2017 for 4,627 yards with 43 touchdowns and six interceptions. He also had five rushing touchdowns and one receiving. In 2016, Mayfield completed 71 percent of his passes for 3,965 yards with 40 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He picked up six rushing touchdowns as well.
The Eagles could use a more young talent at offensive tackle given the age of Jason Peters. Philadelphia could draft a right tackle like Brown, which would let the team move Lane Johnson to the left side. <br> <br>
Brown (6-8, 345) is a massive blocker who was a physical blocker for the Sooners. He opened a lot of holes for Joe Mixon and Samaje Perine in 2016. Brown did the same for others as a starter over the past few seasons. Brown can use his strength and physicality to toss a lot of defenders to the ground as he can be a flat-out bully on the field. However, he needs to improve his pass protection for the NFL. <br> <br>
Some team sources say they don't see Brown as a first-rounder; they think he will be a second-round pick and a starting right tackle at the next level. He also could be a big guard, but his height is less than ideal for throwing lanes on the inside. Brown ran slowly at the combine and put up a meager total on the bench press, but given the weak offensive tackle class, I think he still has a shot at being a late first-round pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.
<i> 2017 NFL Mock Draft Pick (as of 3/27): Jordan Willis, DE (Round 3) </i>
The Patriots could lose Malcolm Butler after giving a huge contract to Stephon Gilmore. <br> <br>
Thomas broke out in 2015 with five interceptions, four passes broken up and 46 tackles on the season. The 6-foot, 192-pounder has good size and cover skills. Thomas played pretty well overall in 2016, although he was beaten badly by Ohio State's Noah Brown. In 2016, Thomas had 49 tackles with 17 passes broken up and two interceptions. <br><br>
<u> <i> Pick change; previously James Washington, WR </i> </u>