Patience is a virtue. The ages old phrase was put to good use in Cleveland on Friday night. After the Carolina Panthers surprised many people by selecting former South Carolina corner Jaycee Horn with the eighth pick, the Cleveland Browns’ chances of landing a top cornerback in the draft was slim. The odds became even more slim after the Denver Broncos selected Patrick Surtain II with the ninth pick. However, in the end, Greg Newsome II slipped to the Browns with the 26th pick.
Newsome is one of the top three cornerbacks in the 2021 NFL Draft. The other two being the aforementioned Horn and Surtain. Once again, general manager Andrew Berry struck gold, this time in the draft.
What Browns Get With Greg Newsome II
According to most experts, Greg Newsome II was the third-best cornerback in this draft. He fits the mold of a cornerback that the Browns front office loves. He’s just a shade over 6-1 and weighs in at 190 lbs. One of the only knocks on him is that he isn’t the fastest guy on the outside. Newsome ran a 4.38-second 40-yard dash at Northwestern’s Pro Day. However, that elite speed doesn’t show up in a lot of his game film.
Newsome is a bit like Horn in the fact that he doesn’t have a lot of ball production. He picked off one pass this last year, and that is his only interception in his three years at Northwestern. While that is a bit worrisome, most quarterbacks avoided his side of the field. On top of everything, Newsome is one of the youngest players in the NFL Draft.
Newsome Rookie Stats Prediction
Games (Started): 15 (12) | Tackles: 70
Passes Defended: 15 | Interceptions: 3
TFL: 6 | Forced Fumbles: 2
After looking at Newsome’s stats this past year, he should have solid rookie year. If he goes into camp and impresses the coaching staff, it’s possible he could start Week 1 opposite of Denzel Ward at CB2. It’s also possible that Newsome has similar stats to Ward’s during his rookie year. In 2018, Ward picked off three passes and was involved in multiple other turnovers. While Newsome doesn’t necessarily have the eye for the ball that Ward does, they should still form one of the best young cornerback tandems in the NFL.
Overall, this was a great pick for the Browns. Without trading up or losing other assets, they managed to grab one of the top cornerbacks in the 2021 NFL Draft. Newsome can play in man and zone schemes, and he should be a plug and play player during his rookie year. Just like the rest of the offseason, the Browns aced day one of the 2021 NFL Draft.