2018 Cleveland Browns Depth Chart
|Quarterback||Baker Mayfield||Tyrod Taylor||Drew Stanton|
|Running Back||Nick Chubb||Duke Johnson|
|Left Wide Receiver||Jarvis Landry||Rod Streater||Rashad Higgins|
|Right Wide Receiver||Antonio Callaway||Damion Ratley|
|Tight End||David Njoku||Darren Fells||Seth DeValve|
|Left Tackle||Joel Bitonio||Desmond Harrison||Greg Robinson|
|Left Guard||Austin Corbett||Earl Watford|
|Right Guard||Kevin Zeitler|
|Right Tackle||Chris Hubbard|
A winless season does a lot to alter the approach a franchise takes to roster construction. There is no where to go but up, a stance that resounded throughout the organization this off-season. The team was quick to remove players that did not fit their mold and released others who weren’t on-board with what the team was trying to accomplish in Cleveland. Hue Jackson was afforded the benefit of the doubt with the team, having an organization that backs his system and way of doing things. Placing this much trust into a head coach is something Jackson looks to build off. The team completely dismantled their offensive talents from last season but re-worked deals to bring in higher skilled players. The quarterback position saw a clean sweep in player removal with a player roster that now consists of three players who were not a part of the team last season.
Their biggest signal-caller acquisition came in a trade with the Buffalo Bills. The team acquired Tyrod Taylor on a flier after the relationship between Taylor and management in Buffalo started to go south. Jackson has praised the talent base that Taylor brings to the offense. He likes the pace Taylor works from, smoothing the transition into an offense that looks to increase the hurry-up game this season. The team also used the first overall pick in the draft to select Baker Mayfield. Although this pick can with much controversy, this is the selection the team wanted to make all along. Scouts enjoyed the prospect that Mayfield brought to the organization. Time will tell how long Mayfield sits behind Taylor, but both are placed in a situation that reduces upon pressures and unwanted attention.
The running back position was also cleared at the starting role. Isiah Crowell joined forces with Bilal Powell and Thomas Rawls in New York, leaving the team with a glaring need at the starting position. The team could have shifted Duke Johnson to a heavy workload, but that would take any elements of success out of his skill set. The team signed Carlos Hyde out of San Francisco and sought additional depth through the draft when selecting Nick Chubb out of Georgia. Hyde was a model of consistency in San Francisco, producing sound numbers through the ups and downs that organization has had the past few seasons. Chubb saw his collegiate season quickly come to a close due to injury, causing him to fall on draft day. The team liked what they saw in terms of recovery with Chubb, so drafting him in the later rounds was a no-brainer.
The team also boosted their depth at the wide receiver position with the addition of Jarvis Landry. Landry is arguably one of the best slot receivers in the game. He is consistent with his route running and his hands are as sure as they come. It does help that he can also make the highlight reel catches we all have come to know playmakers by. This is a blossoming target for Tyrod Taylor and Baker Mayfield to work with. He can tailor his routes and get open, suiting the game style of any signal caller. The team also drafted Antonio Callaway with high hopes for a 4th round product. Callaway will provide size and relief at the outside receiver position. Josh Gordon also returned to the team this past week, a promising sign for a talent that is right up there with the league’s best. If the team can get Gordon up to speed quickly, this offense looks to be solid at all avenues.
The team is still looking to sort out their younger player collection on defense. The defense is loaded with former first-round picks, adding to the player pool with Denzel Ward in 2018. Ward will be a difference maker at the linebacker position. He might afford Myles Garrett some relief on the outsides, letting this edge rusher reach his destination with ease. They still have some sorting to work through in the secondary, but this could be removed if Damarious Randall is to improve upon his All-Pro numbers of season’s past. The defense is filled with younger players, with the oldest player only holding 5 years of NFL service under their belt. This represents a lot of kinks for the team to work through and a much higher learning curve. If the egos and personalities can stay off the field of play, this group could be a talented bunch in 2018.