Browns: Jayden Reed could be a bargain as a mid-round target

Indiana v Michigan State
Indiana v Michigan State / Nic Antaya/GettyImages

Despite a very busy offseason for the Cleveland Browns, including trading down in the 2023 NFL Draft to acquire former New York Jets wideout, Elijah Moore, many are still projecting the team to add another weapon to their wide receiver room.

Looking toward the 2023 NFL Draft and the wide receiver class, a couple of hot names for the Browns throughout the process have been Jalin Hyatt from Tennessee and Tyler Scott from Cincinnati.

Both Hyatt and Scott are known for their blinding speed on tape and their ability to take the top off of the defense, which is exactly what many believe Cleveland to be searching for this offseason to add to their new-look offense with star quarterback Deshaun Watson.

With fan favorites Amari Cooper and Donovan Peoples-Jones back in the fold and expected to be starters in Cleveland in 2023, the number of available snaps and targets at the wide receiver position may be dwindling. In addition to Moore, the team also brought in veteran speedster Marquise Goodwin.

2022 NFL Draft selections David Bell and Michael Woods are now vying for roster spots alongside other recent picks Anthony Schwartz, Demetric Felton and veteran return specialist Jakeen Grant, a 2023 NFL Draft pick at wide receiver would certainly be no lock to make the roster.

The more that a young draft pick can bring to the team right away as a rookie, the better chance he has to make the roster. There is no doubt in my mind that Jayden Reed can carve out a role on this-or any-football team.

Reed began his college career in 2018 at Western Michigan, then sat out 2019 to transfer to the Spartans. In 2020, He was very productive for Michigan State, setting career highs with 59 catches, 1,026 yards, and 10 touchdowns (adding one more on the ground and two punt return touchdowns). His prowess in the return game is very evident when watching him on tape.

As a receiver, Reed can line up at any spot on offense. Split out wide or in the slot, Reed finds a way to win and make a grab. His ball skills and body control, especially at his size (5-foot-11 and 187 pounds), are reminiscent of first-round target Zay Flowers. Like Flowers, Reed can still be effective with his speed deep down the field, as well.

Browns fans will love that he has even thrown a touchdown against Wisconsin. Okay, it wasn't pretty and maybe he doesn't have a future at quarterback, but it is clear that the guy can truly do it all.

Whether he ends up as the fourth or fifth wide receiver right away contributing on offense, serving as the return-man if Grant, Goodwin, or Felton do not win that job, or even just as a young depth option who can fly around and make plays on special teams, Reed has the fire, grit, and ability to find a role early in his young career.

Even with a now-loaded wide receiver room, you never know what the future holds, so the Cleveland Browns would be wise to add another young option in the 2023 NFL Draft, and Reed could be a great fit in the mid-to-late rounds.

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