1. Paul Richardson, Wide Receiver
The Browns had two receivers top the 1,000-yard mark last season as Odell Beckham finished his first season in Cleveland with 74 receptions for 1,035 yards and four touchdowns. Jarvis Landry, who was in his second season with the club, topped OBJ with 83 catches for 1,174 yards and six touchdowns. The problem is, there were no receivers behind them that threatened defenses.
Cleveland had hoped Antonio Callaway would be that guy but he’s no longer in the NFL after struggling to adhere to the league’s substance-abuse policy. With him gone, the team relied heavily on their top two receivers and from there, it was a heavy dose of running backs, a dash of tight ends, and very little receivers.
Adding Austin Hooper will help, as will the return to health of David Njoku — who will be the second tight end in head coach Kevin Stefanski’s offense. However, they still can use a third receiver and there are a couple of players available with Paul Richardson looking to be the best fit.
Richardson brings a lot of speed to the table, which is what made Callaway effective for them. A former second-round pick, Richardson’s best campaign was in 2017 when he averaged 16 yards per catch for the Seattle Seahawks. In all, he had 703 yards and six touchdowns on 44 catches.
He parlayed that into a big contract with the Washington Redskins but struggled to live up to the expectations there. Not all of that blame falls on him as they struggled under center and Richardson was never a proven No. 1 wideout even though they tried to make him one.
Landing with a team such as Cleveland as the third receiver seems much more up his alley. And after missing six games and averaging just 8.8 yards per catch last season, he’s surely going to cost a lot less than he’s used to making.