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Cleveland Browns reportedly want to draft new QB

NFL.com's Albert Breer recently labeled the Cleveland Browns a "wild card" to draft West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith, perhaps after trading down from No. 6 overall.

In this week's print edition of Sports Illustrated, Peter King has the Browns drafting Smith after trading down with the San Diego Chargers at No. 11 spot.

"Don't let the smokescreen acquisition of Jason Campbell, a backup, fool you," King writes via The Repository. "Browns want a QB in this draft, and they get one."

The hypothetical Browns-Chargers swap is a popular one in mock-draft circles, as San Diego likely would have to jump ahead of the Arizona Cardinals at No. 7 to land one of the draft's big three left tackles.

Trading down would put the Browns at risk of losing Smith to a team such as the New York Jets, who are soon to be in possession of two first-round picks. Browns general manager Michael Lombardi could opt instead to go defense in the first round and address quarterback with the pick acquired in the trade.

If Cleveland stays put at No. 6, well-connected former Browns general manager Phil Savage tells The Repository that the pick will come down to Smith or Alabama cornerback Dee Milliner.

Although CEO Joe Banner suggested at the NFL Scouting Combine in February that quarterback was not the Browns' first-round focus, Lombardi never has been sold on Brandon Weeden as the solution.

If the new regime is intent on upgrading from Weeden, don't be surprised if he's heavily shopped on draft weekend.

Follow Chris Wesseling on Twitter @ChrisWesseling.

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