Round 4, Pick 1 – Ohio State LB Baron Browning
With Washington’s second pick from their Detroit swap earlier in the draft, they’re addressing some coverage issues with the selection of Baron Browning, a fantastic WILL LB option in the fourth round. Browning was a Swiss-army knife last year for the Buckeyes. He took meaningful reps from the slot, on the defensive line, and in the box last season.
With 19 career tackles for loss and seven career sacks, Browning’s production at WILL was nearly unmatched. Pro Football Focus gave him a pass-rushing and coverage grade, both of which were over 72.9, but he also was one of the best tacklers in college football last season. He had a missed tackle rate of 9.4 percent, which is well above-average for his class.
Browning does his best work while in coverage, though, an attribute that Washington could definitely use after the departure of Kevin Pierre-Louis.
Browning had a fantastic Senior Bowl performance, with his coverage ability and versatility on full display. He had some very impressive reps against the run, had some standout reps as a pass-rusher, but really shined in coverage.
Browning’s usage all over the defensive side of the football field leads me to believe that coach Rivera and Del Rio are salivating at his versatility and dynamic skill set, which Washington could use in a plethora of ways.