2018 NFL draft: Browns reportedly likely down to Baker Mayfield or Josh Allen at No. 1

We’re a little more than 24 hours away from the start of Round 1 of the 2018 NFL draft, and there has been no clear indication of which player the Cleveland Browns, picking first overall for the second straight year, will choose.

But we may have some clarity after a Wednesday report.

Mary Kay Cabot, the longtime Browns reporter for cleveland.com, writes that league sources indicate “it could be down to Josh Allen or Baker Mayfield.”

Decision time: The Cleveland Browns will reportedly likely choose Bake Mayfield, left, or Josh Allen, far right, with the No. 1 pick in this year’s draft. (AP)
Decision time: The Cleveland Browns will reportedly likely choose Bake Mayfield, left, or Josh Allen, far right, with the No. 1 pick in this year’s draft. (AP)

Lots of opinions on whom Cleveland will choose

Cabot writes that the Browns have given consideration to each of the quarterbacks believed to be the top four at the position – Allen, Mayfield, Josh Rosen and Sam Darnold – but that the team has narrowed its focus to Allen, the Wyoming product with the cannon arm, and Mayfield, the Heisman winner from Oklahoma who can be a bit of a loose cannon.

But many draft experts have pegged Darnold as the Browns’ choice, and Cabot, again citing sources, says Cleveland has cooled on the USC quarterback in recent days.

One source, whom Cabot calls a “well-connected top-level NFL personnel executive” told her at the Senior Bowl and again this week that Browns general manager John Dorsey will choose Allen.

“You can take it to the bank,” the source told Cabot.

Does adviser Scot McCloughan prefer Mayfield?

While that personnel exec thinks Cleveland will pick Allen, one person who has Dorsey’s ear prefers Mayfield – Browns draft consultant Scot McCloughan.

In an interview with Fox Sports Radio’s Doug Gottlieb last October, McCloughan said his favorite quarterback in this year’s class is Mayfield, despite his shorter stature and questions about his maturity.

He reminds me of a shorter version of Brett Favre,” said McCloughan, who spent six years in Green Bay’s front office. “Tough guy. He can throw it. And he’s very confident, he’s not afraid whatsoever. He’s a battler. I know saying Brett Favre’s a big name and I was around him for awhile, but this guy [Mayfield] has talent.”

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It’s almost certain Cleveland will be holding onto No. 1

Dorsey told NFL Network’s Steve Wyche that he hasn’t received legit offers for the No. 1 pick, so barring a drastic change, Cleveland is on the clock. Dorsey would not confirm to Wyche whether he would definitely be choosing a quarterback with the top spot.

The Browns also currently hold the No. 4 pick.

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