Browns get picks by trading down
BEREA, Ohio -- The Cleveland Browns made three trades in the first round of the NFL draft, just not the one everyone expected.
Eric Mangini began his first draft as Cleveland's coach by striking a deal with his old bosses, sending the No. 5 overall pick to the New York Jets, his former team, who took USC quarterback Mark Sanchez. In return, Cleveland got the No. 17 pick, a second-rounder (No. 52) and three Jets: defensive end Kenyon Coleman, safety Abram Elam and quarterback Brett Ratliff.
The Cleveland Browns select Cal C Alex Mack with the 21st overall pick in the 2009 NFL draft.
The Browns then dropped two spots in a trade with Tampa Bay (No. 19), which also sent Cleveland a sixth-round pick (No. 191).
Mangini then swapped the No. 19 pick for Philadelphia's at 21 and a sixth-rounder (No. 195).
On the clock for the fourth time, the Browns finally took the 6-foot-4, 311-pound Alex Mack, who also can play guard and ended his college career making 39 straight starts. Mack, out of California, could immediately replace starter Hank Fraley, a nine-year veteran who struggled last season on Cleveland's 31st-ranked offense, a unit which didn't score a touchdown in its final six games.
The first round ended without the Browns moving wide receiver Braylon Edwards. Cleveland have had on-and-off discussions for weeks with the New York Giants, who are in the market for a wideout after releasing Plaxico Burress. New York, however, drafted receiver Hakeem Nicks of North Carolina with the 29th pick.
At No. 36, the Browns picked Ohio State wide receiver Brian Robiskie, whose father, Terry, served as Cleveland's interim coach for five games in 2004.
And just like Mangini, Robiskie was once a ball boy with the Browns.
"It's unbelievable," said the younger Robiskie, who spent three summers shagging balls and folding towels.
It's ironic Mangini would assist the Jets in acquiring their potential franchise quarterback. Mangini was fired following his third season in New York when the Brett Favre experiment failed down the stretch and the Jets missed the playoffs after an 8-3 start.
Mangini and general manager George Kokinis were ultra-secretive in the weeks and days leading up to their initial draft as Cleveland's management team.
With only five picks and needs almost everywhere, they were expected to be busy -- and no team was more active in the first round.
The early wheeling and dealing seemed to point toward a high-profile selection, but Mack was somewhat of a surprise since it appeared the Browns were moving around to land a better known player like USC's Rey Maualuga, Ohio State's Chris "Beanie" Wells and Missouri's Jeremy Maclin.
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press
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2009 NFL Draft