As stated earlier, adding a player like Ross to Cleveland’s receiving corps would maximize the offense’s potential.
Corey Coleman is expected to be the No. 1 receiver for the Browns and was drafted to be so. After only playing in ten games and not consistently playing like a first-round receiver, Coleman was somewhat lackluster in his rookie season. Although, Browns head coach Hue Jackson is confident he will turn that around in year two.
The addition of Britt offers Cleveland a consistent and tough wideout who will help the younger receivers grow. Britt is heading into his ninth NFL season and 2016 represented his “breakout” year.
He reached 1,000 yards for the first time in his career (1,002) and posted five touchdowns for the first time since his sophomore season in 2010. An impressive season ultimately led to the Cleveland Browns signing him to a four-year deal worth up to $32.5 million.
Aside from Britt and Coleman, the rest of the receivers are young and unproven. That is not to say they can’t become viable receivers in the NFL. Though when drafting four receivers in one draft, it is highly unlikely that all will be starting material. Especially when none make much of an impact in their rookie season.
This opens the door for the Browns to draft another wide receiver in 2017. Although, the team will only will take one if they feel the fit is near perfect, and John Ross can be that guy.
Sure, he is undersized (as is Coleman) but the speed and home-run potential is difficult to miss. That alone provides Ross an opportunity to play come Week 1 as a rookie, and he will make any quarterback with a big arm happy.
Not to mention, Ross is also a viable kick returner with his blazing speed and awareness skills. The Browns struggled to find theirs in 2016 and would likely enjoy not having Corey Coleman and Joe Haden risk injury while returning kicks and punts.
The Cleveland Browns definitely have other pressing needs outside of receiver, but any team finishing 1-15 will need help across the board. The defense was a mess and will likely be addressed primarily through the draft.
However, if the front office feels that Ross will open up the field, help out their quarterback and more importantly speed up Coleman’s growth as a player, they may very well take a shot at a guy like John Ross.
Realistically speaking, Ross’ draft projection is around the later first-to-third round. His playmaking is not in question, but his injury history is worrisome.
At the end of the day, Cleveland needs to address a variety of positions before considering receivers but with the amount of draft capital the Browns have they are able to trade up and take their guy at any spot. Although unlikely to be drafted by the Browns, Cleveland will be interested in adding someone like Ross.