The rumor mill as we approach the NFL Draft Thursday night at Radio City Music Hall is in full swing. The latest is from ESPN Senior NFL insider Chris Mortensen, who expects the Cleveland Browns to select Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel, if he’s on the board when they pick at No. 4 overall.
THIS JUST IN: Chris Mortensen reports he expects Browns to draft QB Johnny Manziel at No. 4 if he’s still there. pic.twitter.com/iQNNfNDg2H
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) May 5, 2014
There seems to be at the very least a possibility that the St. Louis Rams, who hold the No. 2 and No. 13 overall selections, could take Manziel in the first round. This past week the Rams held private work outs for three Texas A&M players, wide receiver Mike Evans, offensive tackle Jake Matthews, and Manziel. All three are expected to be first round draft picks.
If the Rams go in a different direction at No. 2, and Manziel falls past the Jacksonville Jaguars at No. 3, Manziel would be on the board as Browns owner Jimmy Haslam, general manager Ray Farmer, and head coach Mike Pettine make their selection.
In March, the Browns chose not to attend Manziel’s pro day, in College Station, Texas. They did, however hold a private work out with Manziel in April, and held meetings with him, as Farmer insisted they would.
Ultimately, the Browns have a plethora of options at number four overall. It would be very intriguing to see the team select Clemson wide receiver Sammy Watkins, and pair him with receiver Josh Gordon. If that were the case, or they go yet another direction, such as offensive tackle, they’d still have the luxury of selecting a quarterback with the No. 26 overall pick. But, if Manziel is the selection at No. 4, he’ll look to be a stabilizing force at the quarterback position for a franchise that wants a playmaking signal caller.