49ers, Bears Show Interest in Jonathan Allen; Browns Quiet
Updated March 4, 2017
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
Jonathan Allen is one of the top consensus draft prospects in this class, ranking No. 4 on our NFL Draft Big Board. In this writer's opinion, the Alabama defensive lineman was the best player in college football last year, as he dominated his opponents on a weekly basis. While the Heisman Trophy almost never goes to a defensive player, Allen was deserving of the award as the best player in the nation. Everyone expects Allen to go high in the first round, and teams in the top five are showing interest. Sources tell WalterFootball.com that the San Francisco 49ers (No. 2 overall) and Chicago Bears (No. 3 overall) have shown serious interest in getting to know Allen, but the Cleveland Browns have not.
Some have thought that Allen could be a dark horse to go first overall instead of Texas A&M edge rusher Myles Garret. The reason for that is this Browns regime drafted Emmanuel Ogbah and Carl Nassib last year while inheriting another young edge rusher in Nate Orchard. Cleveland also is switching to a 4-3 defense and could use an interior disruptive defensive tackle to pair with nose tackle Danny Shelton. Thus, some thought that Allen could end up going first overall.
However, at this point, the Browns have been awfully quiet with Allen. Sources say that Allen is still in the running. Perhaps Cleveland will show more interest in the months to come to do their due diligence on Allen, but to this point, Cleveland has not been expressing interest to set up meetings.
Conversely, the Bears and 49ers have been involved with checking on Allen while setting times to meet, according to sources. While the Browns may not be heavily interested in Allen atop the draft, it sounds unlikely that both the Bears and 49ers would pass on him.