BEREA, Ohio — Rumored for days leading up to the NFL draft, the Browns finally pulled off a trade to acquire veteran wide receiver Davone Bess from the Miami Dolphins.
Shortly after picking San Diego State cornerback Leon McFadden in the third round last night, Browns general manager Michael Lombardi said the Bess deal was done, pending Bess passing a physical today.
Bess’ agent, Kenny Zuckerman, told the Akron Beacon Journal his client agreed to a three-year contract extension with the Browns. Lombardi said a new contract had been discussed but not completed.
“Bess is a really talented, productive receiver,” Lombardi said. “I think he’s the 14th-most productive receiver in the NFL over the last four years. He’s caught a lot of passes, converted a lot of third downs for the Dolphins.”
To get Bess, the Browns traded their fourth-round pick (No. 104 overall) and fifth-round pick (No. 164) to the Dolphins for Miami’s fourth-round pick (No. 111) and a seventh-rounder (No. 217).
Bess spent five seasons with Miami, catching at least 50 passes each season. He had 61 receptions for 778 yards and a touchdown in 13 games last season. But he didn’t fit into the Dolphins’ long-term plans and became expendable when Miami acquired Mike Wallace and Brandon Gibson in the offseason.
In 2010, Bess set career highs in receptions (79), yards (820) and touchdowns (five).
Bess will give the Browns quality depth at a troublesome position the past few seasons. Bess can help mentor young receivers Josh Gordon and Greg Little, and he likely will compete to be the third receiver with David Nelson, who was recently signed as a free agent.
The Browns did not have a second-round pick this year, forfeiting it when they selected Gordon in the second round of last summer’s supplemental draft.
McFadden is a 5-foot-10, 193-pound cornerback, but he said his size isn’t a detriment when going against larger receivers in the NFL.
“I’m a competitor, and I don’t think my height has anything to do with me and my competitiveness playing,” McFadden told The Plain Dealer.
San Diego State has a Browns connection; former All-Pro quarterback Brian Sipe is the quarterbacks coach for the Aztecs. McFadden said the link was not lost on him.
“I just thought about that when I got the phone call, the first guy who came to my mind was Brian Sipe, him being part of the organization,” McFadden said.
McFadden has a legitimate shot to earn a starting job. The Browns entered the draft with a glaring need for a cornerback capable of starting opposite Joe Haden.
“I think he’s got the skills to certainly compete,” Lombardi said.
DE Barkevious Mingo
1st round, 6th overall, LSU
CB Leon McFadden
5 feet 10, 193 pounds, San Diego State, third round, No. 68
Father was former shortstop/outfielder with the Houston Astros. … Possesses quick feet and good speed. … Good awareness as a zone defender, jumps underneath routes but also keeps watch on the quarterback and can adjust to make plays on receivers running behind him.
|Fourth round||No. 111|
|Fifth round||No. 139|
|Sixth round||No. 175|
|Seventh round||No. 217|
|Seventh round||No. 227|