The former Washington wide receiver is among the elite prospects at his position for the 2017 NFL Draft. Between a breakout season on the field (1,150 yards, 17 touchdowns) last year, and a NFL Scouting Combine-record 4.22 40-yard dash set a few weeks ago, Ross is positioned well for the draft among top receivers, along with Clemson’s Mike Williams and Western Michigan’s Corey Davis.
The Ravens are among the NFL clubs that are in need of draft help at the wide receiver position. The Ravens hold the No. 16 overall pick in the draft, and he’s projected to be selected by the Ravens in the mock drafts of NFL.com analysts Bucky Brooks and Charley Casserly. NFL.com analyst Daniel Jeremiah ranks Ross as the No. 22 player available.
The odd component is watching Davis head back to New York. In a way, it defines the Jets’ desperation to get Pryor off the roster. Davis was a player apparently not worth the two years and $8 million the Browns signed him for back in early March last year in the Jets’ eyes. Now, he could find himself working back into the starting lineup. Davis started 15 games for Cleveland last year with two sacks and 59 solo tackles. Before that, he was a 16-game starter for the Jets each of the last three years.
So it goes in the NFL where the new Browns regime has established itself as one of the league’s more enjoyable wheeler and dealers. After stripping the roster of all their dead weight like Justin Gilbert and Barkevious Mingo via trade, they acquired Brock Osweiler from the Texans and now Pryor from the Jets.
While Kizer might not have been the No. 1 quarterback on Cleveland’s offseason wish list, he has incredible size and arm strength. He’ll need time to be conditioned by Jackson but sounds as though he has the head coach’s attention.
Kizer is Jackson’s first real chance to attach his name to a quarterback with long-term starter potential since Joe Flacco (Jackson was the Ravens’ quarterbacks coach in 2008 and 2009). While he did fantastic work with Andy Dalton in Cincinnati, this is a ground-up project that energizes coaches like Jackson, who enjoy the quarterback whisperer title.
With a versatile skill set and big-play explosiveness that made him one of college football’s top rushers for three years, Cook is an intriguing possibility for a Browns offense that ranked 19th in the NFL in rushing last year at 107 yards per game.
The club is also hosting Oklahoma RB Joe Mixon and Florida CB Quincy Wilson on Monday, per MMQB’s Albert Breer. The Browns have plenty of needs, and plenty of draft picks to fill them. Cook is one of the draft’s top rushers, but he’s competing for draft position in a loaded field of heavily scouted running backs also led by FSU’s Leonard Fournette, Stanford’s Christian McCaffrey and Mixon. Cook ranks third at the position, behind Fournette and McCaffrey, according to NFL Network draft expert Mike Mayock’s latest positional rankings.
Should Kizer eventually emerge as quality starter, he will become the first Fighting Irish quarterback to enjoy extended NFL success since Joe Theismann and Joe Montana four decades ago.
Kizer immediately becomes the most talented passer in Cleveland’s quarterback room. Even if he needs time to develop at the next level, it shouldn’t be long before he’s pressing the underwhelming duo of Cody Kessler and Brock Osweiler for first-team reps.
There is “Draft Day” and there is the reality show that masqueraded as the 2017 NFL Draft, and Thomas and his teammates could be forgiven for feeling the lines were blurred. As with the 2014 film, an embattled decision maker had to process the fervent feedback from ownership, coaches, media members and fans and make a tough call that could alter the future of the franchise. And like Weaver, Sashi Brown — the Browns’ real-life executive vice president of football operations — had gone back and forth on his plan while managing to keep virtually everyone in the dark.
Now, in the hours before the draft, Brown’s strategy was settled; he might as well have been carrying a green piece of crumpled-up paper with the words “Myles Garrett No Matter What” scrawled upon it. Yet Cleveland’s opening night — and, for that matter, its entire draft — would not be devoid of drama. And when the three-day spectacle had concluded, the reviews were resoundingly positive, both inside and outside the team’s training facility.