As of this morning there were just two 2014 NFL draft picks yet to sign with their teams. Now, there is only one. The Cleveland Browns have locked up #8 overall pick Justin Gilbert, leaving the Titans’ Taylor Lewan as the only pick left unsigned.
Gilbert gets his deal done with just hours to spare before the open of training camp. The Browns and Gilbert had been deadlocked over offset language, but they hammered it out, and Gilbert gets the standard four-year deal with a fifth-year option.
Back in June, Browns DC Jim O’Neil said that Gilbert would get every chance to win the #2 CB job in Cleveland. Joe Haden will start in one spot with Gilbert likely holding down the other outside corner position and Buster Skrine lining up on the slot.
The Browns selected Gilbert #8 overall after trading up with the Minnesota Vikings. Cleveland would later execute another trade and select QB Johnny Manziel.
Manziel has gotten slightly more attention than Gilbert thus far, but Gilbert could wind up being a more important player in the short term. Manziel might be riding the bench all year behind Brian Hoyer, while Gilbert is almost certain to be thrown straight into the fire.