Drafting four players in a row who fell below expectations makes it difficult for an expansion franchise to get up and running. However, since then Cleveland has drafted nearly as well as any team in the league when its first-round selections are graded. C Jeff Faine is with his third NFL team but was just made the highest-paid center in history. Plus, labeling QB Brady Quinn as someone who didn’t meet expectations is just a smidge unfair to this point, but with our criteria, it had to be done.
|2007||Joe Thomas, OT, Wisconsin||3||Thomas went to the Pro Bowl as a rookie, which will be just the first of many for him. He far and away exceeded expectations. The Browns have found their franchise left offensive tackle.|
|2007||Brady Quinn, QB, Notre Dame||22||The Browns gave up a high first-round pick in the 2008 draft for the rights to Quinn and he reported late, which made it very difficult for him to get up to speed.|
|2006||Kamerion Wimbley, LB, Florida State||13||Wimbley’s production dropped dramatically in his second season, but should flourish with all the attention that Cleveland’s new acquisitions will attract on the interior.|
|2005||Braylon Edwards, WR, Michigan||3||Edwards took his game to a new level in 2007. He restored his speed and rhythm to maximize his potential as the Browns’ No. 1 receiver who places a lot of pressure on opposing defenses.|
|2004||Kellen Winslow, TE, Miami (Fla.)||6||After struggling through two injury-plagued seasons, Winslow has become one of the most dangerous tight ends in the NFL. He has had over 80 receptions in his last two years.|
|2003||Jeff Faine, C, Notre Dame||21||He has been very solid in the middle for the Saints. Faine has first-round ability, but it took him a while to find his way as a pro.|
|2002||William Green, RB,
|16||Green was a player with very questionable character and turned into an extreme disappointment on the field.|
|2001||Gerard Warren, DT, Florida||3||While he still flashes his extreme talent, Warren never showed the heart or consistency to fulfill his potential.|
|2000||Courtney Brown, DE, Penn State||1||Brown’s game and body were as soft-spoken as his personality. Despite seven years of service, not only did he fail to meet expectations, he was nothing short of a bust.|
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