3 Browns that are a must watch in their home opener

Browns, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
Browns, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Cleveland Browns take on the New York Jets in their home opener. Who are the players that you should be paying close attention to? Here are three candidates to keep an eye on.

The Cleveland Browns head into their home opener with the New York Jets sporting a 1-0 record. Looking to become 2-0 for the first time since 1993, the Browns face an old familiar foe in Joe Flacco. This will be the 29th meeting between the franchises, with Cleveland having a 15-13 lead in the series.

The Browns have a decided edge in top-end talent between the two teams, but this article is going to focus on three players that are not the obvious names for Cleveland. Here are three players to watch in Week 2.

3 Must watch Browns players in Week 2

Browns, Donovan Peoples-Jones. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports /

Player to watch No. 3: Donovan Peoples-Jones

Donovan Peoples-Jones spent the offseason hearing about whether or not he could be a legitimate No. 2 receiver option for the Browns. How did DPJ respond? The third-year receiver snagged six passes for 60 yards.

But what was even more impressive than the number of receptions was the quality of those six receptions. DPJ made tough contested catch after tough contested catch, including a 15-yard snag with Jeremy Chinn draped on him in the final minute of the fourth quarter. That catch put the ball on the Panthers’ 48-yard line and gave the Browns a fresh set of downs.

The promising aspect of DPJ’s performance was that it showcased a different aspect of his game. Peoples-Jones is a big-bodied boundary receiver who, to this point in his career, has been a chunk play guy. DPJ’s career average coming into this season was 19.7 yards per reception.

In the season opener, DPJ displayed the ability to be a possession receiver. The performance also displayed the comfortability and confidence that Jacoby Brissett has in DPJ. By adding this wrinkle to his game, DPJ’s overall effectiveness could be exponential.

By expanding his route tree, defenses will need to respect DPJ’s ability to run slants, curls, and digs. In turn, putting these new skills on tape could help open up DPJ’s ability to set defensive backs up for big play opportunities. Look for Brissett to give Peoples-Jones some shot plays down the field this week against the Jets.