2022 Cleveland Browns Draft Preview


Oliver Thomas, Staff Writer

Coming off a disappointing season, finishing third place in the AFC North with an 8-9 record, the Browns need major changes. The draft will not be able to answer all of the question marks and holes in next year’s lineup, but a good draft will be crucial in the future of the Browns. Bringing in a quarterback over trade is a possibility, but would require the Browns to sacrifice multiple high-end draft picks. However, this possibility is unlikely after the news broke that Baker will most likely be the quarterback for the Browns next year. The Browns are a “win now” team next season. Guys like Myles Garrett, Nick Chubb, Denzel Ward, and Wyatt Teller are in or coming up on their prime years. The Browns do still have a great group of young talent with Greg Newsome, Donovan Peoples-Jones, and Jedrick Wills all having great amounts of potential at such a young age. 

Regardless of if the Browns trade any picks in search of a quarterback, there are problems that need to be addressed. The Browns hold the 13th pick in this year’s draft. Two of the main positions that the Browns should look into drafting are Receiver and Defensive end. Takk Mckinley and Jadeveon Clowney’s contracts come to an end this year, and with a solid group of edge rushers in this year’s draft, the Browns should be in a good position to select multiple players to fill the hole. With the point that both of these guys are in their career, it’s probably best that the Browns move on and fill the hole using the draft. This year’s receiver class is deep, leaving the Browns with many different choices to improve the offense. Another position the Browns most likely will end up drafting is a Defensive tackle. It’s not as big of a hole as DE or WR, but Malik McDowell and Malik Jackson didn’t have very standout years, and the Browns could find a DT who is a step up from these two. 


Major Holes to be Filled:




Jameson Williams – Alabama

Picking at 13th, the Browns will have a variety of different receivers to pick from. Jameson Williams could be taken before the Brown’s pick, but if he falls he would be a great pick for the Browns. Williams proved himself to be an elite and explosive deep threat in his one year at Alabama. Williams also proved to be an elite kick returner, taking back two kicks for touchdowns in his 2021 season. Williams stats were nothing short of fantastic, putting up 1572 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns. Williams would be a huge weapon for the Browns if selected, giving the offense a playmaker that it has been lacking. 


Garrett Wilson – Ohio State

The Browns could be looking into selecting a former Ohio State teammate of Williams, Garrett Willson. Putting up 1,259 yards and 13 touchdowns with a 20.6 yards per catch average, Wilson’s combination of athleticism and speed puts him at the top of draft boards this year. Wilson played a huge role in Ohio States’ historic offense, helping them put up 45.7 points per game, which was first in the FBS. Arguably being the best receiver in this draft, his stats speak for themself. 


Drake London – USC

The USC product has one thing that the other receivers on this list don’t have- size. At 6-5 210, London towers over cornerbacks creating mismatches allowing a large advantage in 50/50 balls. London still maintains speed and shocking athleticism with a tight end build. The Browns probably will stick to a more conventional receiver like Wilson or Williams, but London has shown his endless potential in his 8 games this season before suffering an ankle break. 


Day 2 Receivers


George Pickens – Georgia

If the Browns end up using the 13th pick on a different position, there are plenty of receivers to be taken in round 2 or  3. Georgia receiver, George Pickens, is a receiver who had first-round talent cemented  on his name after his freshman year. After battling injuries, Pickens could fall anywhere between late 2nd to somewhere in the 4th round. Standing at 6’3 200lbs, Pickens has a great frame and size that allows him to be a dominant force when on the field. If Pickens can stay healthy, he could be a great asset to Brown’s offense.


John Metchie – Alabama

 Metchie’s stats don’t compare to a lot of the first-round guys but don’t let that take away from his skill. He isn’t a deep threat like other guys in this draft, but he has other traits that the Browns could use. Like his teammate Williams, Metchie suffered a torn ACL towards the end of the season. Though the injury does bring concern and risk to taking Metchie, he has proven to have great upside. Metchie finished 9th in all of college football with 7.3 receptions per game, being one of Bryce Young’s main targets. His yard after catch skills are elite, and as a great red zone threat, Metchie would be a great weapon for the Browns as a 2nd or 3rd round selection. 

Jahan Dotson – Penn State

There is plenty of other big names that should be available at this point in the draft, one of them being Jahan Dotson By his senior year, Dotson was putting up 12 touchdowns his senior year, having arguably one of the best seasons as a receiver this year. Dotson showed his excellent deep threat ability, as well as very solid route running, a combo that could benefit the Browns offense greatly. 

With this group of receivers being available on days 1 and 2, the Browns will have plenty of options. Names like Wandayle Robinson, David Bell, and Romeo Dubbs all should be available for the Browns on day 2. Chris Olave and Treylon burks are most likely going to go after the Browns select towards the end of day 1, but if Andrew Berry makes any trades moving the Browns down in the draft, these two could be good options. The Browns have many different ways to go down the path of finding weapons for Baker in his final contract year, and it should be interesting how Andrew Berry decides to go down it. 


Defensive End


 The hole of edge rusher will most likely need to be filled on day 2. With many of the elite rushers (Hutchinson, Thibodeaux, and possibly Karlaftis) most likely to be selected within the top 10, there are not many options unless the Browns would trade up for a defensive end, which would be extremely unlikely. The options in the 2nd and 3rd round, and even later in the draft on day 3 are deep, giving the Browns plenty of options. Giving Myles Garrett a young talent to fill in the other defensive edge position would be huge, allowing Myles to get fewer double teams and attention from offensive lines.


George Karlaftis – Purdue 

Karlaftis could go before the Browns selection, but if he is available for the Browns he would be a must draft. His potential is through the roof, as he constantly was able to pressure the quarterback while having to deal with double teams constantly. Karlaftis has shown he can wreak havoc in the pocket as a pass rusher. Karlaftis’ size alone shows how dominant he can be, standing at 6’4 275. With his size and strength, Karlaftis is an NFL-ready player who can make an impact the moment he steps on the field. 


2nd-3rd Round Defensive Ends 


Myjai Sanders – Cincinnati

Sanders isn’t as the standout of a rusher as a guy like Karlaftis, but his speed and athleticism help his case for being a projected second-rounder. Sanders is a very balanced and solid rusher, doing things from batting down passes to stopping the run. As powerful as he is, Sanders may need to bulk up some more, as he only weighs in at 256lb, which for some edge rushers could be an issue going against heavier linemen. With this in mind, Sanders would be a solid section for the Browns on day 2.


Jermaine Johnson – Florida State

Johnson could go in the late first but is projected to go somewhere in the second on many draft boards. His frame and stature are there, standing at 6’5-260. Johnson took huge leaps in his Junior season at Florida State, tallying 11.0 sacks. Johnson has elite strength, as he has shown the ability to blow up blocks, allowing him to tally pressures and sacks effectively. A defensive line anchored by Jermaine Johnson and Myles Garrett would allow the Browns to have one of the best defensive lines in the league.

At this point in the draft, the Browns have some more positions that need to be filled. On the O-Line, JC Tretter’s time with the Browns might be coming to an end. Donavan Johnson and John Michael Schmitz would be a good replacement, but leaning on a mid round pick to be the center on this offensive line might end up being a problem.. The interior defensive line also is a place that could use an upgrade or improved depth after Takk Mckinley and Malik Jackson are coming off of lackluster seasons. Perrion Winfrey, a DT from Oklahoma should be available in the 3rd round, which would be a great time to take a solid pass rusher. 


What to Expect in Rounds 4-7


At this point in the draft the Browns will be drafting for depth. Another receiver certainly wouldn’t be a bad choice, as the Browns WR1, Donovan Peoples-Jones was selected in the 6 round. Andrew Berry  could end up taking some people to add depth to the secondary after how injury-prone guys like Denzel Ward and Greedy Williams have been. The late draft is never that crucial, but it could be big if the Browns can walk away from this draft with a couple of steals from day 3. 

The draft won’t be able to fix everything going into next season, but it can be used as a start to helping the Browns reach the team we all thought they could be.