Cleveland Browns: Jarvis Landry could have biggest role in his career

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - DECEMBER 11: Jarvis Landry /

Cleveland Browns wide receiver Jarvis Landry is known to be one of the best slot receivers in the NFL. But he may become known for more than just that in Cleveland.

The Cleveland Browns created one of the best wide receiver combinations when they traded for Jarvis Landry in March. Pairing Landry with Josh Gordon will create one of the best receiver combos that Browns fans have seen since Braylon Edwards and Kellen Winslow Jr. in 2007.

That was the expectations before Browns fans knew exactly what to expect from Landry. But everybody could be seeing a different Landry than they are used to seeing.

In Miami, Landry played primarily in the slot. He did most of his damage as a possession receiver, as he led the league last season with 112 receptions last season. He also set the record for most receptions in a player’s first four seasons with 400 receptions. But even though he led the league in receptions, he did not eclipse the 1,000 yard milestone, coming 13 yards shy.

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When people pick apart Landry’s game, they say he is not an explosive receiver because of his average yards per reception. Last season, Landry only had 8.8 yards per reception, and a career average of 10.1 yards per reception.

But in an interview with Dan Labbe of, Landry explained why he caught a lot of passes and they were not going for big yardage.

"“Again, I caught a lot of balls. On the field, I was more of a blanket and depending on the concepts and the plays it allowed me to be in the quarterback’s vision because I was five yards every time so it allowed me to be in his vision always and from there just making the catches.”"

The Miami offense did not have Landry work deeper routes that often. He made his living working the middle of the field or while running out routes. But Landry believes that he is more than just a slot receiver that can run only short routes.

"“I think (offensive coordinator) Todd (Haley) is going to give me the opportunities I need to … not show off my talents, but the things that I can do. I believe that I’m a complete receiver all-around.”"

Landry will be starting opposite of Gordon and will be kicked into the slot when the Browns go into formations with three receivers or more.

Browns offensive coordinator Todd Haley leaned heavily on a vertical offense when he was the offensive coordinator for the Steelers. It would not be a surprise if he uses Landry’s strong route running to create separation down the field.

Miami liked to use Landry’s route running in the short range of the field to give an easy option for Ryan Tannehill to hit consistently. But with Haley’s preference to stretch the field vertically, he will want Landry to work his routes deeper. And if he is used more vertically, he will become much more than just a slot possession receiver.

If Haley uses Landry in that way, Landry will have a much better chance at increasing his average yards per reception, quieting the naysayers. But in an offense with Gordon, David Njoku, and Duke Johnson, Landry will not be seeing the amount of targets he did in Miami.

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He may not lead the league in receptions again, but he will still get a high amount of receptions. And add Haley’s offense into his situation, there is a good chance that Landry will put up high numbers in categories that he usually does not do well in.