--> The Cleveland Browns fired Tom Heckert as general manager on December 31, 2012. As of this post, he has yet to latch onto a job with another organization. Fair or unfair? You be the judge. Below is analysis of every selection the Browns made under Heckert, the lone GM of the Mike Holmgren Era. We'll reveal how many passing grades we see but first we'd like to hear what you have to say in the comments below.
NFL DRAFT AT A GLANCE: 2010 CLEVELAND BROWNSRound 1, No.7: JOE HADEN, CB, Florida: Emerged as a starter halfway through his rookie season and has developed into one of the premier young cover corners in the league. Haden has started 31 games through his first three seasons and is signed through 2015. He served a four-game suspension after testing positive for Adderall in 2012 but his play has outperformed his contract. Round 2, No.38: TJ WARD, FS, Oregon: A starter from day one, Ward has provided stability, when healthy. However his season has ended prematurely in each of the past two seasons and enters the final year of his contract. The Browns will need to determine whether he is durable enough to be counted on as a starter long-term.Round 2, No.59: MONTARIO HARDESTY, RB, Tennessee: After trading up to nab Hardesty, expectations were high. Cleveland figured him to compete for the starting running back job in 2010 but he suffered a torn ACL during the preseason costing him the entire year. Hardesty has been subpar and the team has since moved on with the selection of Trent Richardson third overall in 2012.Round 3, No.85: COLT McCOY, QB, Texas: Probably the costliest draft pick under Heckert, the Browns regressed with McCoy at the helm winning just six of his 21 starts at quarterback. His poor play led to the Brandon Weeden experiment in Cleveland.Round 3, No.92: SHAUN LAUVAO, OG, Arizona State: On paper, the selection of Lauvao seems to be great value. However, despite starting 32 games over the past two seasons, many observers have noted Lauvao to be a weakness on the offensive line. An upgrade may be needed.Round 5, No.160: LARRY ASANTE, SS, Nebraska: Did not make the team and was assigned to the practice squad before being picked up by the Dolphins his rookie season. Round 6, No.177: CARLTON MITCHELL, WR, South Florida: The underachieving Mitchell never developed, making just three catches in two seasons before being released prior to the 2012 season.Round 6, No.186: CLIFTON GEATHERS, DE, South Carolina: Released during final cuts of training camp in 2010.NFL DRAFT AT A GLANCE: 2011 CLEVELAND BROWNSRound 1, No.21: PHIL TAYLOR, DT, Baylor: A weight lifting accident cost him the first half of 2012 but Taylor has been stellar serving as the anchor in the middle of the Browns defensive front. His size and athleticism is a rare luxury.Round 2, No.37: JABAAL SHEARD, DE, Pittsburgh: Instant plug and play starter who has lead Cleveland in sacks each of the past two seasons, totaling 15 ½ while starting all 32 games. Along with Taylor, he is considered one of the building blocks on defense.Round 2, No.59: GREG LITTLE, WR, North Carolina: Blessed with tremendous size and athleticism, Little has failed to put it all together. In two seasons as a starter, he has just one 100-yard receiving game, while earning a reputation for having ‘Butterfingers.’Round 4, No.102: JORDAN CAMERON, TE, USC: Made great strides in his second season, nabbing 20 catches before ending the year on a sour not with concussion-like symptoms. With Ben Watson ticketed for free agency, Cameron could find himself in the mix as the starting tight end in 2013.Round 4, No.124: OWEN MARECIC, FB, Stanford: Considered one of the top fullbacks in this draft class, Marecic often found himself on the inactive list during 2012. This was more of a luxury pick than a need filled for a team that had a lot of holes to fill.
Round 5, No.137: BUSTER SKRINE, CB, Chattanooga: A spot-starter who has been streaky at best. While Skrine has flashed potential at times, he has yet to develop into a player who can be counted on. Round 5, No.150: JASON PINKSTON, OT, Pittsburgh: Started the first 22 games of his career before doctors discovered a dangerous life-threating blood clot in his lung. He is expected to return for the 2013 season.Round 7, No.248: ERIC HAGG, FS, Nebraska: Has latched on to the bottom of the roster, filled in and started four games in 2012, Hagg has 29 career tackles.NFL DRAFT AT A GLANCE: 2012 CLEVELAND BROWNSRound 1, No.3: TRENT RICHARDSON, RB, Alabama: Established himself as a workhorse back who the offense can lean on but showed signs of wearing down after a five game stretch in 2012 in which he accumulated 126 carries. Needs supporting cast help but Richardson is hands down the biggest talent at any of the skill positions.Round 1, No.22: BRANDON WEEDEN, QB, Oklahoma State: From Charlie Frye to Derek Anderson, Brady Quinn to Seneca Wallace, Jake Delhomme to Colt McCoy…shall we continue? The never-ending quest for a franchise quarterback still remains and Cleveland is faced with yet another franchise-altering decision to make on Weeden. Is he the quarterback who averaged 250 passing yards per game and nine touchdowns during the first eight games or the shaky signal-caller we saw during the final seven games in which he averaged just 200 passing yards per game and five touchdowns? The jury is still out.Round 2, No.37: MITCHELL SCHWARTZ, OT, California: The Browns struck gold with Schwartz, who along with Joe Thomas, gives the Browns a solid starting duo at the tackle positions up front on the offensive line. The rookie sensation started all 16 games for the Browns.Round 3, No.87: JOHN HUGHES, DT, Cincinnati: Flashed potential at times but needs to show up to work on Sundays in a more consistent manor. Was thrown into the fire early with injury to Phil Taylor. Probably best suited as a backup/rotational body.Round 4, No.100: TRAVIS BENJAMIN, WR, Miami: Started three games and nabbed 18 catches, including seven catches for 89 receiving yards in the final two games. Has a future in the slot.Round 4, No.120: JAMES-MICHAEL JOHNSON, LB, Nevada: The first and only linebacker drafted under the Holmgren/Heckert regime, Johnson started eight of the team’s final nine games and should compete for a starting job in 2013.Round 5, No.160: RYAN MILLER, OG, Colorado: Saw limited action while appearing in eight games. Developmental player.Round 6, No.204: EMMANUEL ACHO, LB, Texas: Was placed on the injured reserve with a leg injury and missed the entire 2012 season.Round 6, No.205: BILLY WINN, DT, Boise State: Started 10 games on the defensive line and showed positive signs of being able to provide dependable depth in the future.Round 7, No.245: TREVIN WADE, CB, Arizona: Played more than expected due to injuries but considered a nickelback/situational corner at best.Round 7, No.247: BRAD SMELLEY, FB, Alabama: Spent the first 14 weeks on the practice squad but was an exceptional H-back weapon at Alabama, remains to be seen if he can carve out a nich on offense moving forward.Supplemental Draft: JOSH GORDON, WR, Baylor: The Browns forfeited their second round pick in 2013 in order to select Gordon in the 2012 Supplemental Draft. He rewarded them by leading them team with 805 receiving yards and five touchdowns. Can be an exceptional number two wide out.