The Cleveland Browns did not have a pick in the 2023 NFL Draft until the third round because of the Deshaun Watson and Elijah Moore trades, but at least one of the picks they did have may yield a productive player.
The team is hoping that Cameron Mitchell, a cornerback out of Northwestern University they took in the fifth round, will be one of those diamonds in the rough.
Browns general manager Andrew Berry said that he and his colleagues liked Mitchell’s versatility in the secondary, as well as his abilities on special teams.
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) April 29, 2023
Mitchell is a native of Bolingbrook, Ill., a suburb of Chicago, and he stands six feet tall while weighing 195 pounds.
In his second season at Northwestern, he had four passes defended, and he followed it up with five passes deflected the following year and nine in 2022.
He was an honorable mention All-Big Ten Conference in his sophomore and junior seasons.
Defense is the main concern for the Browns, especially now that their offense is starting to look formidable, at least on paper, with four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Amari Cooper, up-and-coming wideout Donovan Peoples-Jones, newcomer Elijah Moore and, of course, three-time Pro Bowl quarterback Deshaun Watson.
Starting cornerback Denzel Ward is a star, but the other starting corner spot could use some improved production.
At times, Cleveland’s pass defense was solid, but they did finish just 14th in total yards allowed and 20th in points given up.
Defense could very well make the difference between another disappointing season and a return to the NFL Playoffs.