The Cleveland Browns are the dumpster fire of the NFL. Scratch that, they may be the definition of dysfunction, period. This team flat out stinks. In the most Browns news ever, even Josh Gordon already will start off the year by not joining the team at camp. Cleveland became the 2nd team ever to finish a 0-16 which forced Hue Jackson to jump into Lake Erie just to get the stench off of him. Now that isn’t to say that Cleveland doesn’t have talent either because they do. Alright, let’s get this one out of the way. What can we expect from the Cleveland Browns heading into training camp this season?
3 Position Battles To Watch
1. Quarterback: Baker Mayfield, Tyrod Taylor
I would expect Tyrod Taylor to start the year as the starter after taking the Bills to the playoffs a year ago. Taylor isn’t perfect but he can make plays with his legs and make enough throws to win games. I’ve been on record for saying that Mayfield has virtually no shot at making it in the NFL. Being in the hell hole of Cleveland doesn’t help his cause. It remains to be seen whether that will be the case sooner rather than later.
2. Running Back: Carlos Hyde, Nick Chubb, Duke Johnson
I added this one in here for fantasy purposes. Because Cleveland is so bad, it might be a case where you probably avoid all of them. Hyde had a big year for Kyle Shanahan in San Fran last year but so does everyone. Nick Chubb has big-time talent but hasn’t rebounded the way I would have liked from a knee injury in college. It remains to be seen who will gobble up the touchdowns at the moment. Then there’s Duke Johnson who will get the bulk of the receiving duties out of the backfield.
3. Left Tackle: Shon Coleman, Austin Corbett
The Joe Thomas void is probably the biggest cause of concern for the Browns this year. Thomas has been literally the only stalwart for this organization for the last decade. Thomas didn’t give up pressures, let alone sacks. The current starter is Shon Coleman who was nothing more than ugly at the end of last season taking over for Thomas. Cleveland drafted Austin Corbett to potentially be that guy but he’s better suited for guard. The problem is they already have 2 pretty talented guards on the roster. Let’s see how this turns out.
Ready To Breakout: Emmanuel Ogbah
All the attention goes to Myles Garrett (and rightly so). However, people seem to be overlooking Emmanuel Ogbah who actually is a fairly productive pass rusher in his own right. Ogbah has racked up 9.5 sacks in his first two years in the NFL and figures to take the leap in year three. The last 7 weeks of the season, Ogbah really started to take off tallying 28 total pressures. Cleveland’s defense isn’t as bad as you might actually think.
Rookie To Watch: Denzel Ward
The Browns 2018 Draft class may actually be remembered with what they did with their fourth overall pick. The decision to take Denzel Ward over Bradley Chubb or Roquan Smith may have lingering effects on the franchise moving forward. If Ward doesn’t turn into a Pro Bowl player at corner, the odds are the Cleveland will look predictably foolish.
Fantasy Sleeper: Antonio Callaway
Tyreek Hill. That’s all you need to know.