The estimable FreedomRide checks in with the first of Cleveland's two first-round picks (thanks, Indianapolis!) in the 2014 BRB Mock Draft.
With the 4th pick in the 2014 BRB Mock Draft, the Cleveland Browns select Teddy Bridgewater, QB from Louisville.
The Cleveland franchise is also known as The Factory of Sadness for good reason: it has been lodged in the deepest level of quarterback hell since it was re-born. That fact has doomed every GM/HC regime there since 1999. The ugly history of tragic QB fail in those years can be seen here.
It's enough to make you wonder why they should even keep trying, but try they must. All their efforts at team building will come to naught until The Man is found, so here they go again.
Teddy Bridgewater, once the consensus #1 QB in the 2014 draft, has taken a fall in recent months. Rumors from his Combine interviews portrayed him as "meek," surely the last word one would like to hear associated with one's prospective franchise QB...OK, maybe "dead" would be worse, but still...
Then there was his glove-less, disastrous pro day, where long passes fluttered wide, over and short of uncovered receivers. That REALLY did it, and the choir began to sing about his falling from the top to the bottom of the 1st round. Maybe even out of the first round altogether.
But Teddy still has one big thing on his side that is far more connected to the reality of how he plays football than the Combine or pro day: it's his game tape. On game video, he's a winner, a producer, a tough guy and a superbly accurate short-to-medium zone passer who takes great care of the ball. In 2013, he threw for almost 4,000 yards in 13 games, completing a sparkling 71% of his passes. Even better, he had an astonishing 31/4 TD/interception ratio. His signature highlight for me was the brutal hit he took from Florida's Jon Bostic in the 2013 Sugar Bowl, which he promptly shook off and then came back to beat the SEC power Gators in a major bowl game.
Teddy's a quiet, intense grinder. People talk about other "first in/last out" film junkies, but Teddy might set the new standard. The Browns will have zero worries about him setting an example for the rest of the team; in that respect at least, he will bring leadership. He will need a possession passing offense to thrive in, but thrive he will given the right circumstances. Perhaps, finally, the man will be found to close that factory.
As you probably guessed, I love this pick. What's your reaction?
OneManBlitz and the Oakland Raiders are now on the clock. That pick is due to me via e-mail by 7 p.m. CDT this evening.
1. Houston Texans--Sammy Watkins (WR--Clemson)
2. St. Louis Rams (from Washington)--Jadeveon Clowney (DE--South Carolina)
3. Jacksonville Jaguars--Johnny Manziel (QB--Texas A&M)
4. Cleveland Browns--Teddy Bridgewater (QB--Louisville)
5. Oakland Raiders--OneManBlitz
6. Atlanta Falcons--Three and Out
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers--theSpaceCityKid
8. Minnesota Vikings--bcaust
9. Buffalo Bills--NoSafetiesNeeded
10. Detroit Lions--UTBawse23
11. Tennessee Titans--BostonianToro
12. New York Giants--TooDarkMark
13. St. Louis Rams--grandmasteroz
14. Chicago Bears--JayTrain52
15. Pittsburgh Steelers--Steel Blue Crew
16. Dallas Cowboys--TonyOverTroy
17. Baltimore Ravens--TexanSam
18. New York Jets--Sugel Mendoza
19. Miami Dolphins--bt20
20. Arizona Cardinals--Lukayyy
21. Green Bay Packers--gyeager
22. Philadelphia Eagles--gm.in.waiting
23. Kansas City Chiefs--MrCatPants
24. Cincinnati Bengals--hlc1221
25. San Diego Chargers--f22a4bandit
26. Cleveland Browns--FreedomRide
27. New Orleans Saints--H&Hguy
28. Carolina Panthers--Nashmeister
29. New England Patriots--37bp
30. San Francisco 49ers--TexansDC
31. Denver Broncos--Capt. Ron
32. Seattle Seahawks--UprootedTexan
33. Houston Texans--bhsman