As a lead-up to the 2024 NFL draft, we’ve broken down the current depth chart of every NFL team and identified the biggest draft and team needs for the Cleveland Browns.

You can find additional team-by-team draft needs articles and other draft content on our 2024 NFL Draft Hub.

Who Did the Cleveland Browns Select in the 2024 NFL Draft?

The Cleveland Browns selected Michael Hall Jr. (DT, Ohio State) with the No. 54 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.

The Browns also drafted:

  • Zak Zinter (OG, Michigan)
  • Jamari Thrash (WR, Louisville)
  • Nathaniel Watson (LB, Miss St.)
  • Myles Harden (CB, South Dakota)
  • Jowon Briggs (DT, Cincinnati)

Cleveland Browns Needs: Top Positions of Need in 2024

  1. Offensive Tackle
  2. Linebacker
  3. Defensive Line

What Picks Do the Cleveland Browns Have in 2024?

The Cleveland Browns have 5 picks in the 2024 NFL Draft, including:

  • Round 2 (54)
  • Round 3 (85)
  • Round 5 (156)
  • Round 6 (206)
  • Round 7 (243)

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Cleveland Browns Draft Capital Stats

Our Sharp Draft Value Rank is a valuation of draft capital based on a combination of average performance delivered and average dollars earned on second contracts.

This is based on two public models: performance delivered based on draft slot (the AV model created by Chase Stuart) and contractual earnings in non-rookie deals based upon draft slot (the OTC model created by Brad Spielberger and Jason Fitzgerald).

  • Browns Sharp Draft Value Rank: 32 of 32 teams
  • Browns AV Model Draft Value Rank: 32 of 32 teams
  • Browns OTC Model Draft Value Rank: 32 of 32 teams

Cleveland Browns Draft Value vs. Other Teams:

The Browns’ draft value is 55% lower than the league average of all 32 teams. 31 other teams have more draft value entering the 2024 NFL Draft.

Browns Draft Value Infographic

Cleveland Browns Draft Prediction:

Mock draft expert Ryan McCrystal believes the Browns could target a running back like Jonathon Brooks (RB, Texas) with their top pick at No. 54 overall in the second round.

Cleveland Browns Strength of Schedule, 2024

The Cleveland Browns have the 3rd-hardest NFL strength of schedule for the 2024 NFL season.

2024 NFL Strength of Schedule Infographic

Cleveland Browns Offense: Depth Chart, Analysis & Draft Needs

Rich Hribar breaks down the offensive depth chart by position for the Cleveland Browns, identifying areas where the team could improve in the upcoming 2024 NFL Draft.

Browns Offense Infographic

Quarterback Depth Chart, Browns:

  1. Deshaun Watson
  2. Jameis Winston
  3. Tyler Huntley
  4. Dorian Thompson-Robinson

After only appearing in six games to close the 2022 season, the Browns were looking for Deshaun Watson to regain some of his early career form with a full offseason heading into 2023.

What they ended up with was more mixed results on a small sample.

Watson only started six games, with one of those being a game in which he played 12 snaps before exiting.

Watson sustained a rotator cuff injury in Week 3 that did not allow him to return in full until Week 9.

In Week 10, he suffered a broken bone in his throwing shoulder that required surgery and sidelined him for the remainder of the year.

Watson has now made 12 starts since the 2020 season.

Outside of injuries, when he was on the field last season, Watson was still chasing his early career production.

Out of 48 quarterbacks to throw 100 or more passes last season, Watson ranked 39th of that group in EPA per dropback (-0.16) and 35th in success rate (39.3%).

On that same list, Watson ranked 38th in completion rate (61.4%), 31st in yards per pass attempt (6.5 Y/A), 24th in touchdown rate (4.1%), and 24th in interception rate (2.3%).

17.0% of Watson’s throws were inaccurate per TruMedia, by far the highest rate of his career and ahead of only Trevor Siemian (17.0%) and PJ Walker (20.7%) among those passers.

The Browns were still 4-1 in the five full games that Watson played despite the uneven output as a passer.

In Watson’s final game of the season in Week 10, Cleveland beat Baltimore 33-31 on the road in a game in which Watson completed all 14 of his passes in the second half for 9.6 yards per pass attempt.

We know that the Browns are forced to ride things out with Watson under center.

He counts just under $63.8 million against the cap this season.

He has cap hits of $64 million in 2025 and 2026. Even if the Browns do choose to eat the remainder of this contract after this season, they would still lose $72.9 million and then $8.9 million in cap space after the dead money of $136.9 million and $72.9 million on those seasons.

The Browns went out this offseason and shored up the rest of the depth chart at the position after they started Dorian Thompson-Robinson, PJ Walker, and Joe Flacco with varying results when Watson was unavailable.

The Browns did go 4-2 in Flacco’s starts, but he also sported a 3.9% interception rate in those games, which eventually cost them in the postseason.

With Flacco leaving free agency, Cleveland added Jameis Winston and Tyler Huntley to be alternatives should Watson miss time this upcoming season.

Running Back Depth Chart, Browns:

  1. Nick Chubb
  2. Jerome Ford
  3. Nyheim Hines
  4. D’Onta Foreman
  5. Pierre Strong
  6. John Kelly
  7. Giovanni Ricci (FB)

After 32 touches for 191 yards (6.0 yards per touch), Nick Chubb suffered a severe knee injury just 18 snaps into Week 2, which forced him to miss the remainder of the season.

Chubb then had surgery on his MCL in September.

Waiting for that injury to heal, he then had a second surgery in mid-November to repair his ACL.

That second surgery will push right against the nine-month recovery timeline by the time the start of this season hits.

Cleveland is already preparing to ease Chubb back into the lineup and wait for him to be ready to play.

If the Browns were truly going to chalk up Chubb’s 2024 season, they could have released him with zero penalties and saved $11 million against the cap for this season,

But instead, they restructured his contract for 2024 with guaranteed money in an effort for Chubb not to push himself back too soon trying to make a run at one more payday in the NFL and making things worse.

That said, the Browns still do not know if Chubb will be the same running back again or when he will be 100% back in action this season.

Chubb will be 29 this December and still a pending unrestricted free agent after the season.

The Cleveland run game all but fell apart after Chubb’s injury last season.

Non-Chubb running backs for the Browns ranked…

  • 24th in the NFL in yards per rush (3.8 YPC)
  • 24th in success rate (33.8%)
  • 20th in explosive run rate (8.7%)
  • 31st in the rate of runs that failed to gain yardage (23.9%)

With both Jerome Ford and Kareem Hunt being extremely inefficient rushers and Hunt still sitting on the open market this offseason, the Browns have added D’Onta Foreman and Nyheim Hines to the position.

Hines missed all of the 2023 season with a knee injury that he suffered in a ski accident.

Hines can play special teams and contribute on passing downs, something that kept Ford afloat last season.

Foreman can be a direct replacement for the role that Hunt had as a short-yardage rusher and push Ford for early-down snaps.

Foreman had a 41.3% success rate with the Bears last season as a runner while Ford had a 28.9% success rate as a runner, which was 45th at the position.

The team also still has Pierre Strong under contract for the next two seasons.

All of the moves that Cleveland has made this offseason signal that they are going to ride 2024 out in seeing what they have, but this is a team that could be looking for their next long-term RB1 sooner rather than later if Chubb cannot bounce back.

Wide Receiver Depth Chart, Browns:

  1. Amari Cooper
  2. Jerry Jeudy
  3. Elijah Moore
  4. Cedric Tillman
  5. David Bell
  6. James Proche
  7. Mike Woods
  8. Jaelon Darden

Cleveland wideouts combined to catch 178 passes (23rd) for 2,445 yards (20th) and 10 touchdowns (23rd) in 2023.

19.4% of the Cleveland throws to wide receivers last season were inaccurate per TruMedia, the highest rate in the NFL.

Amari Cooper had another solid season amidst all of the quarterback changes last year, catching 72-of-128 targets for 1,250 yards and five touchdowns over 15 games played.

Cooper averaged 17.4 yards per reception, the highest rate of his career.

His 83.3 receiving yards per game were also a career high, anchored by a 265-yard performance in Week 15.

That was Cooper’s fourth 200-yard game of his career, more than any player since he entered the league in 2015 and just one short of the record shared by Calvin Johnson and Lance Alworth.

Cooper will turn 30 this summer and is only signed for this upcoming season.

To potentially get ahead of Cooper leaving after this season while giving the team another potential weapon for the short-term to work alongside Cooper, the Browns traded for Jerry Jeudy and immediately signed him to a three-year contract that runs through the 2027 season.

Jeudy failed to live up to his first-round draft status in Denver, but he fits consistent criteria that this Cleveland regime has looked for in wide receivers, which is hyper-production at the collegiate level entering the NFL.

They did the same thing with Elijah Moore last offseason, and the draft selection of David Bell has yet to yield any results.

These are all players (including Cooper) that pop in a ton of collegiate production models.

Through four years in Denver, Jeudy has yet to hit 1,000 yards in a season, catching 11 total touchdowns over that span.

In 2023, his 3.4 receptions per game were his fewest since his rookie season while his 47.4 yards per game were the second-lowest mark of his career.

With Moore on the roster, Jeudy should play more outside receiver than he has to this point in the NFL.

Since playing 69.0% of his snaps outside as a rookie in 2020, Jeudy has since played 74.6%, 48.5%, and 54.3% of his snaps in the slot the past three seasons.

When lined up in the slot, Jeudy has averaged 1.77 yards per route run compared to 1.88 yards per route run when lined up outside.

In his first season with the Browns, Moore caught 59 passes for 640 yards and two touchdowns.

Through three seasons in the NFL, Moore’s yards per target and yards per reception have dropped from the season before it.

For what it is worth, Moore was at his best with Watson under center.

Moore caught 62.9% of his 35 targets from Watson compared to 60% from Thompson-Robinson (9-of-15), 52.2% from Walker (12-of-23), and 51.6% from Flacco (16-of-31).

Moore enters this season in the final year of his rookie contract, also set to become an unrestricted free agent after the season.

With both Cooper and Moore potentially hitting the open market after the season paired with the unknown that Jeudy will have a career spark, Cleveland still has a lot of long-term questions at wide receiver despite having enough hope to throw on the field in 2024.

Bell, Cedric Tillman, and Mike Woods are all young players locked up for multiple seasons.

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Pre Order the Best Analytical 2024 Football Preview

Don’t miss out on Warren Sharp’s 500+ page preview of the 2024 NFL season.

The preview is unlike anything you have ever seen, featuring stunning visualizations built with the reader in mind.

This preview shares insights into players, coaches, teams, and philosophies with one goal in mind: to prepare you for the 2024 NFL season by delivering the smartest information in the fastest, most direct way possible.

Pre order the 2024 Football Preview now!