For Browns fans, it's Christmas time.
Like so many sugarplums, the thought of Trent Richardson, Justin Blackmon or Ryan Taneyhill dance through our heads, running, catching or throwing their way to a much sought-after Super Bowl and the long-awaited Championship parade down Euclid Avenue.
For the current braintrust, it better the best Christmas ever. Maybe Red Rider BB gun-good.
Tom Heckert has to be up to task of spinning 13 picks (the most of any team) into draft gold. When you factor in the free agent inactivity (no offense Frostee Rucker) you can argue that the next few days may be the most important in the resurrected Browns history.
No pressure, Tom. Don't sweat it, Mike. Not that big a deal, Pat.
Simply put, there's no room for error. The first three picks have to become high-impact, game-changing starters. The Browns need a player or two that opposing coaches have to fear and game plan for. Such a player doesn't exist on the current roster.
The guys running the show have put all their eggs in the draft basket, so it's basically do or die. This draft will either be remembered as the one where future stars were picked or the one that doomed the Holmgren era. As all Brown fans, I'm hoping for the former and am mentally prepared for the latter.
So who do the Browns pick in my mock draft? I could be wrong but Minnesota's recent chatter about possibly trading picks the Rams seems like a lot of smoke. I say everybody stays put and the Browns take Trent Richardson. Hailed as the next Adrian Peterson, Richardson would give the Browns their best running back threat since Ernest Byner and Kevin Mack back in the mid-80's. Peyton Hillis was a one-year wonder--I think Richardson will help the Browns from day one and is the best bet to get the chains moving again.
At 22, I think it's WR Kendall Wright from Baylor or OT Jonathan Martin from Standford. Areas of need--nuff said. Wright's a burner who's the best receiver on the board at that point. Martin can come in and start right away and take over for O'Neil Cousins, currently number one on the depth chart (and if that doesn't scare you, you're not paying attention).
As far as the third pick at the top of the second round (#37), this is where the Browns should throw a little caution to the wind and draft QB Brandon Weedon, if available. Colt McCoy proved to me last year he's a good backup QB, but not a franchise one. I think the 29-year old Weedon is an extremely accurate QB (a must in the West Coast Offense) and is not your normal rookie. He's played in a professional setting before and will handle himself more maturely. Will he have a shortened shelf-life? Maybe, maybe not. I just know the Browns are fond of him and if they get a chance to draft him, they will.
Happy Draft Day, Browns fans!