#12, Cleveland Browns - DeVante Parker (WR, Louisville)
The Browns have plenty of needs, but with the top two quarterbacks already off the board and no other signal caller worthy of a reach here at the twelfth pick, it’s time to look at another position of need on the offensive side of the ball.
When you look at the Browns wide receiving core, it doesn't exactly inspire a lot of confidence in the offense. Brian Hartline was a solid signing for an underrated possession guy, and Dwayne Bowe is your standard reclamation project with his best years probably behind him. With Andrew Hawkins being the team’s leader in receiving yards last season and the dynamic but oft-troubled threat of Josh Gordon getting served with an indefinite league suspension, the Dawg Pound of Cleveland lacks a bona fide number one receiving option for whoever their starting Quarterback in Week 1 may be.
Cue DeVante Parker. With a big body at almost 6’3" and an 80" wingspan, he is a prototypical outside threat. Parker routinely uses his size to go up and get the contested and errant passes (which we may see a lot of from McCown and Manziel) as well as use good speed after the catch. None of his skills may be considered to be at an "elite" level, but he can use a wide arsenal of extremely solid skills to be productive from the outset. And with the Browns growing list of character concerns within the organization, they need a well-respected player who can act as a leader on and off the field without any red-tape. When drafted, he will immediately be a Day 1 starter, sliding into the Browns’ primary receiver opening and should provide a prolific weapon for Cleveland’s passing attack for years to come.
The team can't place an ounce of faith in Gordon, so it may as well act like he's not in the equation anymore. Bowe is getting toward the tail end of his career, so Cleveland needs to find a young receiver who can be the No. 1 guy for years to come.
Sometimes, you do what you have to do.