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The Browns Are Asking Prospects About Bricks And Paper Clips

Some franchises want to identify the best football players in the draft. The Cleveland Browns want to identify the best MacGyvers.

The Browns asked at least two players at the Combine,

"How many different things can you think of that you can do with a paper clip?"

Then there's Arkansas center Travis Swanson. He says a Browns scout approached him at the Senior Bowl and asked him

"to name all the things I could do with a single brick in one minute."

Throw it at a blitzing LB? Fling it in disgust after getting drafted by the Browns?


There is method to the Browns' madness. It is, presumably, a test of the prospects' lateral thinking. Are they able to envision unorthodox solutions for problems with seemingly limited options? How do they react under pressure when faced with an unexpected dilemma?

There's no evidence that this sort of exercise sheds light on any greater ability, let alone translates to football acumen. (That's good news for Swanson, who says he said a brick could be used to build things, as a doorstop, and that's all he could think of.) But it can't hurt to get prospects talking, I guess. And Combine interviews are boring. Why not come out of them with some ideas for the Browns' Etsy page?

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