Cleveland Browns rank No. 1 on Bleacher Report’s Supporting Casts
The Cleveland Browns have had a massive offseason, adding pieces to their roster in a near-constant flow. With the jarring amount of talent injected into the offense especially, the Browns may have the league’s best supporting cast.
Ever since general manager John Dorsey took over, the Cleveland Browns have had their foot stuck to the gas pedal when it comes to adding talent. Dorsey made a promise in his initial press conference that he would provide the “real players” that the Dawg Pound had craved for two decades. Beginning with No. 1 overall pick Baker Mayfield, a laundry list of talent has come through the doors in Berea ever since the Browns hired Dorsey.
In this offseason especially, the Browns have made a point to get more explosive on the offensive side of the ball. Going out and trading for wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. will certainly provide a spark on offense, and a true top-flight target for Mayfield to throw to in his sophomore season. This level of talent at receiver has been, outside of quarterback, the thing the Browns have most sorely lacked since returning to the NFL in 1999.
Beckham Jr. has gone from one of the least talented teams in the NFL in the form of the New York Giants, to being the leading man in the NFL’s most impressive supporting cast. According to Bleacher Report’s Brad Gagnon’s rankings, the Browns are giving their quarterback a better offensive cast of characters than any other team in the league.
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And quite honestly, it’s easy to see why. Not only can this offensive group exhaust most every defense in the league, but they are built with a specific purpose: the Cleveland Browns can, and will, kill you in the red zone.
Let’s start in the backfield with, of course, Rookie of the Year runner-up Baker Mayfield. Mayfield thrived deep in opponent territory during his rookie season, carving up short-field defenses to the tune of 20 touchdowns and zero interceptions in 2018.
Mayfield was fantastic in the red zone last season, and he’s only helped by running back Nick Chubb and the newly added Kareem Hunt. Chubb’s powerful running style kept defenses on their toes, and the three-dimensional offense of a pass-catching running back in Hunt will be a major help in 2019.
Moving out to the receivers, the names speak for themselves. Odell Beckham Jr., Jarvis Landry, Rashard Higgins, Antonio Callaway. As Gagnon mentions:
"“There’s no wide receiver duo in football quite like slot superstar Jarvis Landry and all-around megastar Odell Beckham Jr.”"
Complementing that dynamic duo with Higgins and a long-field burner in Callaway would already be overwhelming without the potential for a fantastic running game.
David Njoku at tight end is the final instrument in Cleveland’s offensive symphony, and his part may be the most underrated. Njoku is entering his third year at the startlingly young age of 22. He’s still yet to possess in the blocking acumen of a veteran tight end, but among pass-catchers at his position, he may be the best. Njoku could very well bloom this season and become one of the best tight end threats in the league.
Comparing the Browns to a symphony once again, their offense is a masterfully put together wall of sound. Under conductor Freddie Kitchens, the Browns will have a chance to show off their potentially beautiful offensive attack in 2019, complete with a full cast of characters. If you happen to live in the Cleveland area, or if you just enjoy good offensive football, try your best to go see them in concert this season. It will be worth it.