Originally posted on Cleveland Frowns  |  Last updated 4/15/13
Matt Borcas is a Mentor, Ohio native who recently emerged from a field of 4,000 competitors to land a job writing about the NFL for ESPN’s Grantland. Matt’s Browns-centric column on the NFL Draft will run regularly here all the way up to draft weekend and through its immediate aftermath. Enjoy! ————— In these days of pre-Draft angst, it’s comforting to know that a perfect, if fictional, Cleveland Browns Draft lies on the horizon of 2014 theatrical releases. For the uninitiated, the movie is called Draft Day, starring Kevin Costner as the Browns GM, Dennis Leary as the head coach, and Jennifer Garner as the GM’s love interest. Co-screenwriter Rajiv Joseph described it thusly to Plain Dealer film critic Clint O’Connor: It’s a movie that takes place in one day. It’s about the general manager of the Cleveland Browns. His professional and personal lives collide on the day of the NFL draft. He has these draft picks and he’s trying to save his team, which is going down the drain. Not a big stretch for many Browns fans. This is a noble project in theory, and not just because it’ll presumably feature Garner strutting her stuff in a Women’s Pro Line Trent Richardson jersey. For Browns fans, the Draft is at once an acknowledgement of the failures of previous years, an annual reprieve from feeling irrelevant, and most importantly, a wellspring of hope. That this wellspring hasn’t run dry yet in Cleveland since ’99 is just one obvious reason why this warrants big screen dramatization as much as anything in this cold world. The Draft (not drafting, mind you) is what Cleveland does best. Yet despite all this, its impossible to tune out the skeptics, such as this website’s proprietor, who reduced the concept of the Draft Day film to mere “ridiculousness” in a terse email in response to my proposal for this column. The problem being, of course, that this is also big budget Hollywood sports fiction, so we know how it’ll end: happily ever after, with a middle finger shamelessly extended towards reality. And worse, a reality that’s inflicted such unimaginable pain on so many. Could fiction possibly have anything to add to the truth here? Could this film possibly attempt to mirror the front office ineptitude that’s plagued Berea since 1999? Well, if it doesn’t, it’s surely doomed, so here’s a semi-comprehensive list of indispensable plot points to help save Costner from another Waterworld-type debacle: Costner feuds with the team President – and wins. This conflict will comprise the first quarter of Draft Day. Costner and the President will be diametrically opposed on first round strategy, to the point where the Pres. finds it necessary to fire him. Team Owner sides with Costner, and history moves on. Costner sends profane email to a fan. Perhaps unseating the President was too much of a confidence booster for our antihero. Fans have every right to question a GM’s decisions, especially a Browns GM, but that’s not how the nose-thumbing Costner sees it. So when he receives an innocuous email urging him to trade up for the Draft’s top QB prospect, his innards boil with rage. My inbox isn’t a damn suggestion box, he’ll seethe, and promptly fire off an ill-advised reply imploring the fan to, among other things, “go root for Buffalo!” (Note that there was only one other team in the running as the subject for this film.) Fortunately, Deadspin won’t get ahold of the email until Day 2, so we can save the fallout for Draft Day II: The Second Round. Costner has a substance abuse problem. What good character doesn’t? For obvious logistical reasons, this can’t result in a mysterious mid-movie dismissal, but it can at least be something that local shock jocks pay cloying reference to on a far too regular basis. Moreover, this will cause Costner’s romantic strife with Garner. (Remember, co-screenwriter Joseph ominously referred to his “professional and personal lives [colliding].”) The payoff here won’t just be dramatic, but also history’s first Oscar for an inanimate object. Costner is hated by the local beat writer, shielded from the public eye by top men, glorified by a prominent WASP, and possess a suspect track record. Just to keep the plot current and interesting. Costner botches the trade. This is how IMDb sums up Draft Day: “The manager of an American football franchise struggles to acquire the number one draft pick for his team.” There’s only one way for this thing to end. _ _ _ _ _ FRIDAY: With the Draft just two weeks away (!), we shift back to nonfiction. Tweet
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Doc Rivers: Warriors have 'swagger' of defending champion

Damian Lillard added as a finalist for 2016 U.S. Olympic Team

Celtics legend Paul Pierce prepares for what ‘could be’ his last game in Boston

Free-agent WR Josh Morgan accidentally shot himself, charged with crime

Jon Beason retires after nine NFL seasons

Brewers Association sends Peyton Manning case of craft beer


Report: Police recommend charges against LeSean McCoy

Heat interested in Kings’ 3-point specialist Omri Casspi

Rick Pitino thinks Louisville should be fined $10 million for scandal

Browns LB Armonty Bryant indicted on felony drug charge

Report: Danny Ainge 'excited' at chance to add Al Horford

Pat Haden collapsed on USC campus

Johnny Manziel’s grandpa on ex-girlfriend: ‘The girl has her problems’

Andy Dalton reunited with missing luggage thanks to social media

Chad ‘Ochocinco’ Johnson used to soak his ankles in urine

Why Tom Thibodeau needs to be in New York

Defensemen in high demand as NHL trade deadline looms

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

Security guard indicted for assaulting University of Houston football fan

The LeBron-Kobe rivalry and Finals matchup that never was

Mario Williams recognizes Bills may release him

Terrell Owens says Cris Carter 'begged his way' into HOF

QUIZ: Name every WWE Heavyweight Champion

Three NHL players who can cement their legacies like Peyton Manning

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Report: Knicks fire coach Derek Fisher

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker