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Browns Were “Very Close” To Drafting WR Sammy Watkins At No. 4 Overall

 

Since the draft ended over the weekend, it appears as though many believed the Cleveland Browns put together one of the better draft classes, despite the fact that they didn’t address the receiver position as aggressively as many expected them to now that Josh Gordon is facing a suspension.

Interestingly enough, Browns GM Ray Farmer tells Peter King of MMQB.com that they nearly draft Clemson WR Sammy Watkins at No. 4 overall before the Bills traded up for him.

We were very close to turning in the card. We very easily could have turned in the card with Sammy’s name on it,” Farmer said.

King wondered if the Browns would ultimately regret their decision in the long-run in the event Watkins turned into a “Randy Moss-type talent.”

“Even if Sammy turns into Randy Moss, Justin Gilbert can be every bit as good as Patrick Peterson,” Farmer said. “That’s how much talent he has. And in the game today, I feel cornerbacks are as important as wide receivers, and maybe harder to find. So I have no regrets about it, no.”

Meanwhile, Jason La Canfora writes that the Browns decision to trade down to No. 9 overall “was done with their fingers crossed that Texas A&M receiver Mike Evans might slip.”

A GM tells La Canfora that the loss of Gordon could end up having a huge impact on the Browns offensive production and particularly their quarterback given the significance of the “X” receiver in Kyle Shanahan’s offense.

“If they don’t have Gordon, they are [screwed],” one GM tells La Canfora. “Look at Shanahan’s system — it’s all about the ‘X.’ He has Andre Johnson and they went and got Pierre Garcon in Washington and now they might not have that guy. If you don’t have a top-flight ‘X’ in Kyle’s offense, there is no way to clear it out. I don’t know how he’s going to make it work.”

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