CLEVELAND BROWNS 2011 DRAFT NEEDS
TOP PICK: NO. 6 OVERALL
TOP PRIORITIES: Defensive line, wide receiver, offensive tackle, cornerback
AT FIRST BLUSH: New head coach Pat Shurmur inherits what could be the Cleveland Browns quarterback of the present and future in Colt McCoy, and a surprisingly solid running back in Peyton Hillis. Another bright spot is that few 2010 draft choices fared better last year than Browns' cornerback Joe Haden. But glaring needs remain for the historic franchise long starved for victories, starting with a pass rush. If Clemson defensive end Da'Quan Bowers is available at No. 6, look for his name to be called. Or do they go with LSU's Patrick Peterson and have stalwart bookend cornerbacks for the next decade? If Georgia wideout A.J. Green remains on the board, could the Browns afford to pass up a chance to add a true game-changer on the outside -- incumbents Mohamed Massaquoi and Brian Robiskie don't fit that mold -- to complement their improving young backfield?
IF COOLER HEADS PREVAIL: If the arch-rival Pittsburgh Steelers have shown the Browns anything through the years, it's that championships are won with defense. Pass-rushing defensive ends such as Bowers and lock-down corners like Peterson represent an opportunity to build such a defense, particularly with the Browns switching to a 4-3 next season. If both are gone, look for Alabama DT Marcel Dareus or Nick Fairley of Auburn, the latter a defensive tackle with the motor and the slightly downsized physique of a defensive end. Pass-rushing DE's North Carolina's Robert Quinn and Cal's Cameron Jordan aren't quite as highly rated but would not be much of a stretch here. If adding a wideout remains the top priority, expect Bama's Julio Jones to be a consideration if Green already is off the board.