The Cleveland Browns are officially out of the playoff race this season and are gearing up to face the Washington Commanders this Sunday. Just one day earlier, two huge college football games will be played.
The first of these games will be between the 2nd-ranked Michigan Wolverines and 3rd-ranked TCU Horned Frogs. While they won’t be the only team keeping an eye on this game, the Browns scouting department will surely be taking a close look at many players participating in this year’s Fiesta Bowl. You can catch the game and check out these prospects as well on ESPN at 4:00 pm EST on New Year’s Eve.
TCU Horned Frogs Draft Prospects
It’s been a phenomenal year for TCU. We took a look at two of their prospects earlier this season that the Browns could be interested in. Let’s revisit them and take a look at two more.
TCU CB Tre’vius Hodges-Tomlinson
Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson has an NFL Hall of Fame pedigree. He is the nephew of NFL legend RB LaDainian Tomlinson. He’ll need quite the career in the NFL to get that golden jacket but he is already raking in the accolades. Hodges-Tomlinson was First-Team All-Big 12 and First-Team AP All-Big 12 in 2020 and 2021. Additionally, he was a First-Team All-American (Pro Football Focus) and Second-Team All-American (Associated Press) in 2020.
The 5’9”, 180 lb. CB makes up for his size with speed, explosiveness, and ball skills. Through 36 games in his college career, he has racked up 117 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 5 INTs, 32 passes defended, and 3 forced fumbles.
TCU CB Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson is a top 10 CB in the 2023 draft.
• 5 INT, 31 PBU in last 3 seasons
• 28.3 comp. % allowed in 2022 (1st for CBs)
• 28.6 QBR against (5th)
• 0.143 Points Saved/play (2nd)
• Smart, fluid and scrappy with NFL bloodline pic.twitter.com/ZLYsFWcBW4
— Jacob Infante (@jacobinfante24) December 23, 2022
TCU CB Josh Newton
Another Horned Frogs CB the Browns could be evaluating is Josh Newton. Newton spent 3 years with Louisiana-Monroe before coming to TCU this season. He currently leads the BIG 12 this season in passed defended (12) and INT return yards (114).
TCU LB Dee Winters
When we first looked at Dee Winters earlier this year, he had accumulated 4.5 sacks in his first 6 games. Winter’s was however just getting started. Now at 7.5 sacks on the year, the violent LB is finishing out the year on a mean streak and should be a difference-maker in this game.
TCU WR Quentin Johnston
We can all dream, right? Quentin Johnston is a top WR prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft and the Browns would have to do some wheeling and dealing to get in on the sweepstakes. While the scenario of moving up into the early or mid 1st round to take a WR is unlikely, he’s fun to watch and you certainly should enjoy the show.
Michigan Wolverines Draft Prospects
The Wolverines are loaded with talent and cruised over Ohio State on their way to a BIG 10 championship. Prior to their Ohio State game, we took a look at some Michigan prospects the Browns may have their eye on. Let’s revisit those two prospects and look at an additional two.
Michigan CB D.J. Turner
It’s fitting to add another CB to the list of prospects to watch because Browns GM Andrew Berry just can’t get enough of them. Turner is the fastest player to suit up for the Wolverines this year and has shown a ton of potential in pass coverage even though he isn’t a ball hawk.
Michigan TE Luke Schoonmaker
David Njoku is going to be with the Browns for the long haul but it’s not too early to take a flyer on a big-bodied target like Luke Schoonmaker for depth. Schoonmaker is 6’6” and 250 lbs of pass-catching potential.
After only 2 games in 2019 and 9 games in 2021, he has played in 11 games this season. With 386 receiving yards this year and 3 TDs, it’s a stretch to say he’ll be a safe draft selection. While most think he will go undrafted, some have him as high as #80 on their big board at the time of this article’s publishing.
Michigan DT Mazi Smith
This freakishly athletic DT has plenty of potential and the Browns badly need to address the interior of the defensive line. The current Browns regime has appeared to treat the DT position as one not worthy of a premium draft pick or flashy free agent signings. If Smith falls to the middle or back end of the draft, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Browns jump on him similar to the Perrion Winfrey pick in 2022.
Unfortunately, Smith also has some legal issues pending.
69. Mazi Smith – DT, Michigan
Can never stop building in the trenches and this guy is a certified FREAK athlete. Doubt he’s here after the combine. But for now he is.
With DeFo status going forward up in the air I think this guy could be special.
— Landon Oliver (@Landon3MR) November 11, 2022
Michigan Prospect We Won’t Get To See:
We won’t get to see one of the Wolverine prospects that we like but he’s worth mentioning here.
Michigan RB Blake Corum
The Browns will likely have Nick Chubb and Jerome Ford at RB in 2023 but there’s no guarantee Kareem Hunt, D’Ernest Johnson, or Demetric Felton will remain with the team. It would be wise to add another young RB via the draft and Michigan RB Blake Corum is an interesting prospect.
In 30 games with Michigan, Corum has 417 rushes for 2,489 yards which is an impressive 6.0 yards per carry. This season alone, he has 18 TDs on the ground and another through the air. At only
Corum has not decided whether or not he will declare for the NFL Draft but he would certainly be an interesting prospect to keep an eye on. He will be out for the CFP due to a knee injury.
Blake Corum, coming off of what should’ve been a Heisman finalist junior szn, is a big contributor to the depth of this RB class
Reminds me of Doug Martin pic.twitter.com/oeXFOvOczv
— sfDynastyFF (@Quintorris_) December 24, 2022
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