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Top 10 Reasons Why the Browns Have Failed Since 1999 – #9 Draft Woes Have Plagued Browns

Year: 2003

Number of Picks Used: 8

First Round Picks: 1 – Jeff Faine, C, 21st overall

Second Round Picks: 1 – Chaun Thompson, LB, 52nd overall

Third Round Picks: 1 – Chris Crocker, DB, 84th overall

Pro Bowlers: 1 – Ryan Pontbriand, LS (fifth round), twice.

Longest in NFL: Crocker, 2013, 151 career games.

Longest with Browns: Pontbriand, 2011, 134 career games.

Noted: Butch Davis’ most maligned pick at the time – Pontbriand – wound up being his best draft pick in four drafts. Faine was traded to New Orleans following the 2005 after the Browns signed LeCharles Bentley as a free agent and he wound up playing until 2012 with three other teams. Crocker was traded to the Atlanta Falcons following the 2005 season and ended his career after 5.5 seasons with the rival Cincinnati Bengals.

Year: 2004

Number of Picks Used: 6

First Round Picks: 1 – Kellen Winslow, TE, 6th overall

Second Round Picks: 1 – Sean Jones, S, 59th overall

Third Round Picks: None.

Pro Bowlers: 1 – Winslow, once.

Longest in NFL: Luke McCown, QB (fourth round), 2015, 62 career games.

Longest with Browns: Two players – Winslow and Jones, 2008.

Noted: McCown, who was thrust into action with four starts as a rookie, was traded by new GM Phil Savage and has since carved out a long career as a journeyman backup. He even started one game this season for the New Orleans Saints. Winslow was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a second-round pick by new head coach Eric Mangini during the 2009 offseason. This was Butch Davis’ final draft. He traded a second round pick to move up one spot in the first round to take Winslow, whose first two NFL seasons were mired with injuries. He retired following the 2013 season. Jones played in 60 games in four years, starting 44 of them.

Year: 2005

Number of Picks Used: 8

First Round Picks: 1 – Braylon Edwards, WR, 3rd overall

Second Round Picks: 1 – Brodney Pool, S, 34th overall

Third Round Picks: 1 – Charlie Frye, QB, 67th overall

Pro Bowlers: 1 – Edwards, once.

Longest in NFL: Edwards, 2012, 112 career games.

Longest with Browns: Pool, 2009, 71 career games.

Noted: Phil Savage’s first draft netted Edwards, one of the most polarizing Browns players ever. Edwards started 58 of his 62 games with the Browns until midway through the 2009 season, when he was traded to the Jets for a second-round pick. Edwards played in back-to-back AFC title games with the Jets in 2009 and 10, but became a journeyman shortly after and retired at the age of 29. Frye, an Akron grad, was the Browns’ full-time starter in 2006 but was traded to the Seattle after just one half of the 2007 season and was out of the league by 2009. Pool intercepted 11 passes with the Browns in five seasons, but only played two more with the Jets before retiring.

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Dan Gilles has been a sportswriter in Northeast Ohio for 21 years and been a fan of Cleveland Sports his entire life. He primarily covers high school sports and has also covered collegiate sports, the Lake Erie Crushers and other various pro sports as well. He has written for several newspapers and is currently with The (Elyria) Chronicle-Telegram. Dan is a 1992 graduate of Admiral King High School in Lorain and also has degrees from Lorain County Community College and Cleveland State University. When he's not writing, he plays the drums for a local metal band, is a Saturday night DJ at a local bar and plays in four fantasy football leagues. You can follow him on Twitter @DanGilles1973.

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