I know this has been bantered about in various threads. And from my perspective, at first glance, I thought we overpaid to move up for Sammy. Moving up 5 spots cost us next year's 1st and 4th rounders. When last year Miami moved up from 12 to 3 for only a 3rd rounder. But once I started thinking about it, I think the compensation made perfect sense.
First, the talent at the top of this year's draft was significantly better than last year. For a team like Cleveland to pass on an elite talent like Sammy or Mack, they had to be compensated accordingly. And that compensation is greater than it was for a lesser talent in last year's draft.
Second, I can easily disregard the 4th rounder next year. That is a non-issue in the deal. So we are talking about our first rounder next year as the main compensation we had to part with. Next year's 1st is the equivalent of a 2nd this year. If I am Whaley and I expect to make the playoffs next year, then I easily see why they'd rather keep this year's second rounder and move next year's first instead. It makes total sense as they need the help right now.
Third, I could easily argue that with the depth of this year's draft that getting a Kouandijo at 41 is the equivalent talent of someone we'd get in the 17-20 range next year.
Finally, many of you are raising a valid concern that if EJ flops this year then we've given up our 1st rounder and chance to find a new franchise QB. I'd initially say that he'd have to be awful this year for them to give up on him that quickly. I think they'd give him that third year unless he's terrible. But also, look at the QBs this year. If we hadn't had a first rounder this year and had a top 10 pick in the 2nd round, we could have easily moved up into the end of round one and had our pick of the QBs except for Bortles. So there is absolutely no reason that we couldn't still target a future franchise QB without a 1st round pick next year.
I think it was a gamble on Whaley's part, but I think they structured the deal very well and it was fair compensation. And it makes me smile every time I see the Sammy highlights!