They say at least two or three years must pass before one can really assess or grade an NFL Draft. Cleveland Browns head coach Paul Shurmur doesn’t think that kind of prolonged evaluation period is necessary for the Cleveland’s first round mega-trade with the Atlanta Falcons.
“I think we did great. I don’t care what anybody says. But we obviously started off the draft by making a historic trade, probably one of the greatest trades in draft history.”
Bold claim by the first-year head coach. To refresh your memory of the trade’s particulars, Atlanta traded away their second and fourth round picks, as well as their first and fourth round selections in the 2012 Draft, in order to move all the way up from No. 27 to Cleveland’s spot at No. 6.
An incrediblly solid haul, no doubt. For a team like the Browns who showed promising progress last season but still have quite a bit of core building left to do with their roster, the trade provided the high volume of picks Mike Holmgren needed. Of course, they surrendered one of those picks to move up from No. 27 to No. 21 in order to draft Phil Taylor. So if the behemoth defensive tackle out of Baylor doesn’t pan out the way the Browns expect him to, the trade suddenly looks a bit less glamorous, particularly because there were still several blue-chip talents on the board at No. 6 that carried fewer risks than did the selection of Taylor.
Which brings us back to where we began — needing time to assess if the trade really was in fact one of the greatest trades in draft history. Nevertheless, I sure don’t blame him for being excited. If all goes according to plan, the Browns will have successfully stockpiled quality, young talent this year and next to help restore the once-proud franchise back to prominence.
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