BEREA (92.3 The Fan) – The Cleveland Browns now own the Houston Texans’ first and second round picks in 2018.
In a stunning move with several quality players on the board, the Browns traded the 12th overall pick, acquired as part of the trade last year with Philadelphia for the second overall pick that allowed the Eagles to draft Carson Wentz, to the Texans.
The Browns slid down 13 spots to No. 25 where they selected Michigan safety Jabril Peppers and also receive Houston’s 2018 first-round selection as well.
The Texans used the trade to pick Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson.
“We just thought that the better opportunity for us was to trade back,” executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown said. “Hue and I, we’ve spent some time with all of the quarterbacks that were taken this evening. We did like all of them at certain places. For us, in terms of our plan and building the roster, we felt like it was just better to move back. That shouldn’t be a take against Deshaun, a great young man. We’ll root for him to have a great career.”
As a result, Cleveland passed on Temple linebacker Haason Reddick, Ohio State safety Malik Hooker, Alabama cornerback Marlon Humphrey, Alabama defensive end Jonathan Allen and Alabama tight end O.J. Howard.
“Whenever you trade down, you’re sitting there biting your nails for about the next 45 minutes or an hour and a half or so until we got to 25, hoping that some of those guys fell to us,” Brown said. “We felt good about the player that we did end up taking there.
“You know, you can’t have your cake and eat it too all of the time. Most of the time, you are making a decision and taking a risk. We ended up making the best decision for our organization, and I feel good about where we are positioned moving forward.”
Last month the Browns took quarterback Brock Osweiler off of the Texans’ hands and his $16 million salary for Houston’s second rounder in 2018. The teams also swapped fourth and sixth round picks this year as well in that trade.
To begin the draft, the Browns selected Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett with the No. 1 pick and added Miami tight end David Njoku at 29 following a trade with Green Bay that saw them send Nos. 33 and 108 to the packers.
Cleveland is now stocked with 2 first-round and 3 second-round picks in the 2018 NFL Draft.