Cleveland Browns Make or Break Player No. 3 – Denzel Ward
No one has ever doubted the ability of Denzel Ward, but there have been some question marks on how durable of a player he was. He struggled with injuries at Ohio State and missed four games in each of his first three seasons.
2021 was better, he missed two full games and a major part of another, but the last half of the year, Ward was elite. Not only was he a lockdown corner, but he was also stepping up in run coverage and making huge plays.
It feels like the pick-six he had in Week 9 vs. the Cincinnati Bengals is what really flipped the switch. The Bengals were about to go ahead 7-0 when ward took one 99-yards the other way and started the route which ended in the Browns winning 41-16. Truthfully, it was the best game of the season for the Browns.
With Ward in the fifth-year option of his rookie contract, he needs to be elite all season to give this team a chance. Not only will his coverage help the guys up front, but he could also land himself a contract that makes him one of the highest-paid corners in the league.
Andrew Berry took a bold strategy by not giving Ward an extension to this point (rightfully so). Let’s see who wins. Berry will either get a discount if he is injured again or will pay through the roof if he plays like he did the second half of 2021.