1. Deshaun Watson is becoming the leader the Browns need on the field
When the Browns added Deshaun Watson last season, he was dealing with a lot of off-field trouble. Accused of more than 20 counts of sexual misconduct both Watson and Cleveland knew he would be suspended — they just didn't know the length. Following a settlement, the ban ended up being 11 games and Watson was able to play in the final six weeks.
It was a small glimpse of what was to come — and Watson looked like a player who hadn't seen meaningful action in 700 days. Now as he heads into 2023, he has a clean slate and no suspension looming over his head. This has led to a new player, who is solely focused on winning.
He's been putting in the work and has been giving Kevin Stefanski his input as they are trying to ensure this offense is one he can succeed in.
In addition to his work on the field, Watson says he's opened up to his teammates. While he's been quiet on the whole, he says he did tell his side of the story to his teammates.
Cleveland hasn't had a true franchise quarterback since returning to the NFL in 1999. They believe they have that now in Watson and he's been appreciative of the way the organization has supported him.
There will always be those who simply cannot root for Watson and it's hard to blame them. But the Browns made this move hoping to have someone they can win with and, Watson is starting to look comfortable in that role.