Analysis

Grading Every Cleveland Browns Position Group Going into 2022

Grading Every Cleveland Browns Position Group Going into 2022

The Cleveland Browns enter the 2022 season after being the center of much of the off-season. 2018 number one overall pick, Baker Mayfield, is now a Carolina Panther. Cleveland sent a haul of picks for three-time Pro Bowler, Deshaun Watson. However, uncertainty remains with Watson and a potential suspension for the 2022 season which leaves many question marks for the potential of this Browns team headed into 2022. The rest of the roster is poised to compete in a loaded AFC but only time will tell how the 2022 Browns fare against the rest of the big hitters.

QB: Deshaun Watson, Jacoby Brissett, Joshua Dobbs

Grade: B

Explanation: Giving an accurate grade at this position group is a little premature at the moment due to to all the uncertainty that surrounds it. Deshaun Watson’s fate is held up to a judge appointed by the NFL on whether he will be suspended for this season and for how long. The verdict has yet to come and that will dictate the QB position of the Browns. The Browns recently dealt former first overall pick, Baker Mayfield, to the Panthers. That move leaves them with just two quarterbacks on the roster if Watson were to face suspension. Brissett has solid playing experience in career and can be a formidable backup. However, Cleveland has a win now roster and in a division that features quarterbacks such as Joe Burrow and Lamar Jackson, the Browns may want to look for a better option, perhaps Jimmy Garoppolo. A lot of unknowns are happening right now in Cleveland and some big decisions are going to have to be made.

RB: Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt, D’Ernest Johnson, Jerome Ford

Grade: A

Explanation: The Browns feature a very good trio of backs led by Nick Chubb. Chubb is one of the best backs in the league, rushing for roughly 1,000 yards on over 5.0 yards per carry each of his first four seasons. Hunt only played 8 games last season but ran on 4.9 yards per carry and had 841 yards in 2020. Johnson stepped up big time last season rushing for 534 yards on 100 carries. The Browns enter the 2022 season with three different threats to run with and help limit each other’s workloads. The Browns having an offensive line as good as it is makes the run game a serious threat to be one of the best in the league.

WR: Amari Cooper, Donovan Peoples-Jones, David Bell, Anthony Schwartz, Jakeem Grant Sr, Ja’Marcus Bradley, Michael Woods II, Javon Wims, Isaiah Weston, Mike Harley Jr, Travell Harris

Grade: B

Explanation: The Browns start 2022 without Odell Beckham Jr and Jarvis Landry at receiver but bring in four-time Pro Bowler, Amari Cooper. Cooper is a massive plus to this position group that features Peoples-Jones and third round draft pick, David Bell. Peoples-Jones led the Browns in yards last season with 597. However, they are relatively thin in this position. Bell is entering as a rookie and will have to step into a high production role, while backup Schwartz is entering his second season. Jakeem Grant is a veteran but only had 11 receptions in 2021. Health is going to be a priority for this group in 2022.

TE: David Njoku, Harrison Bryant, Miller Forristall, Marcus Santos-Silva

Grade: B

Explanation: Njoku started to show the talent he exhibited in the 2017 and 2018 seasons. He had 475 yards a season ago and was awarded a big contract extension because of it. He is going to be a major part of the passing attack for the Browns in 2022. Harrison Bryant is a solid number two as he chipped in with 233 yards a season ago. The big question is whether Njoku can replicate the success of a season ago and not revert back to the lackluster play he had in 2020.

OL: Jedrick Wills, Joel Bitonio, Nick Harris, Wyatt Teller, Jack Conklin, James Hudson III, Michael Dunn, Ethan Pocic, Blake Hance, Chris Hubbard, Alex Taylor, Hjalte Froholdt, Dawson Deaton, Drew Forbes, Elijah Nkansah, Brock Hoffman, David Moore, Ben Petrula

Grade: A-

Explanation: One of the best offensive lines in football despite not bringing back JC Tretter. Bitonio and Teller make up what is one of the best guard duos in football. Jedrick Wills is one of the better young tackles in the league and Jack Conklin is one of the best right tackles in football. Harris is the most likely candidate to take over the Center position, but Pocic has experience at the position as well. Harris played 68 snaps at the position a season ago and held his own well. This is going to be a very solid group again in 2022 and they will be blocking for some explosive running backs.

DL: Myles Garrett, Jordan Elliott, Taven Bryan, Jadeveon Clowney, Stephen Weatherly, Perrion Winfrey, Tommy Togiai, Chase Winovich, Isaiah Thomas, Sheldon Day, Glen Logan, Isaac Rochell, Curtis Weaver, Roderick Perry II

Grade: B+

Explanation: Myles Garrett headlines this group as he is one of the best pass rushers in the game right now. He had 51 tackles, 16 sacks and a forced fumble last season. On the other end there is Jadeveon Clowney who had 37 tackles, 9 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. Those two make up for a serious problem for opposing offensive tackles. The Browns drafted Perrion Winfrey from Oklahoma who had 5.5 sacks from the interior in 2021. Taven Bryan comes over from Jacksonville where he had 15 tackles and 2 sacks in 2021. Winovich comes over from New England where he had back-to-back 5.5 sacks seasons in 2019-2020 before a dip in time in 2021. He should be a good depth piece off the edge. The Browns are star studded on the edges but unproven in the interior. The Browns are hopeful Winfrey could step up and make an impact as a rookie, but others will also need to step up.

LB: Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Anthony Walker Jr, Sione Takitaki, Tony Fields II, Jacob Phillips, Willie Harvey Jr, Silas Kelly, Dakota Allen

Grade: B

Explanation: Owusu-Koramoah had a very solid rookie season in which he had 76 tackles, 1.5 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. Expect a jump in play going into year two for the talented linebacker. Anthony Walker knows how to get to the football as he had 113 tackles in only 13 games played last season. Takitaki is another solid backer who recorded a 73.4 coverage grade by PFF in 2021. This an overall solid position group among a very good defense.

CB: Denzel Ward, Greg Newsome II, Martin Emerson Jr, Greedy Williams, AJ Green, Nate Meadors, Herb Miller, Shaun Jolly, Reggie Robinson II, Parnell Motley

Grade: A-

Explanation: Denzel Ward is one of the league’s best corners and was rewarded a major contract extension this off-season because of it. He had 53 tackles, a forced fumble, 6 pass break ups and 3 interceptions in 2021. On the other end you have Greg Newsome II who had a very good rookie season in 2021. In 12 games, he had 37 tackles and 8 pass break ups. Greedy Williams is another solid corner who had 35 tackles and 2 interceptions last season. This is a trio of very solid corners, which is especially essential in the AFC North where you have receiving tandems like the Bengals to cover. 2022 should be another big year for this position group and another one where their young corners in Newsome II and Williams make another jump.

S: John Johnson III, Grant Delpit, Ronnie Harrison Jr, Richard LeCounte III, D’Anthony Bell, Luther Kirk

Grade: A-

Explanation: John Johnson III was a major upgrade to this defense a season ago. He had 61 tackles, 1 forced fumble and 3 interceptions in his first season with the Browns. Delpit is another solid safety who had 66 tackles, 1 forced fumble and 1 interception last season. Johnson and Delpit make up for a very solid safety duo and round out a very good defense. 2022 should be another big year for this position group and defense as a whole.

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