1. Mack Wilson
Mack Wilson was expected to sit most of his rookie year, however, due to an injury to Christian Kirksey he was thrust into the starting spot and his inexperience showed.
Wilson was the Cleveland Browns 5th round selection and as a result of this going into the season, it was planned that he would not see the field too often. Once Kirksey suffered an injury in week two of the season, Wilson was forced to be the Browns starting middle linebacker for the entirety of the season after Kirksey’s injury happened.
It’s almost never the ideal situation for a team to have to start a fifth-round pick at such a crucial position so early in their career and as a result of this, the linebacking core was one of the weakest parts of the team last season.
As it appears at the time, it might be even worse than last year, the Browns let the previously mentioned Christian Kirksey along with Joe Schobert walk in free agency. This means that the linebacking core will rest on Wilson’s shoulders with him being the mike backer. This will be a lot of responsibility for such a young player, however, it seems that Wilson is very confident in his ability to step up and rise to the challenge.
It will be interesting to see if Wilson can live up to the high expectations that he has set for himself and the well being of the Cleveland Browns defense could hang on the shoulders of Wilson’s ability to have a bounce-back season and show the necessary growth from his rookie to his sophomore year.