Browns stock up, Stock down following playoff loss

David Njoku had a breakout year in 2023, setting career highs in catches, receiving yards, and touchdowns. Discover why he is a key receiving weapon for the Browns.

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The magical 2023 season ended ugly for the Cleveland Browns as they lost to the Houston Texans in a 45-14 blowout. While the loss was a game fans, players, and the organization as a whole want to forget, some good things came out of this game.

Below are some players whose stock rose and fell after Saturday's playoff loss

Stock up: LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah

JOK had an absolute breakout year for the Cleveland Browns. This year he led the team in total tackles, and defensive stops, and was even top five on the team in sacks. While most of the defense came out flat in their playoff defeat, Koramoah shined just as bright as he did all season.

All eight of his total tackles were defensive stops. He even stepped up wearing the coach's green dot this season, signaling plays in for the defense, after linebacker Anthony Walker was out for the year with an injury. I expect the Browns to get Koramoah’s extension done this offseason (as his contract expires after 2024) to get a jump on the linebacker market. He earned it with his effort and production. Rewarding him with an early extension would send a great message to the locker room.

Stock down: Edge Myles Garrett

This sounds like a bit of an overreaction putting Myles Garrett here after his excellent year and all his accolades, but he flat-out did not have a good outing in his third playoff game. You have to remember going into this game he was the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year favorite. He was voted DPOY by Pro Football Focus, and given a First team All-Pro nod by both the NFLPA and the Associated Press, but Saturday he didn’t live up to the awards.

Of course, sacks aren’t everything but we have to expect more than a mere three pressures and two offside penalties in a playoff game. It’s worth pointing out that his two offside penalties aren’t uncharacteristic either as among all defenders Garrett is tied for fourth this year in penalties. It's one thing to be neutralized in some situations as offenses will constantly game-plan to stop a player of Garrett's caliber. Still, self-inflicted wounds have to be eliminated especially in playoff games. These aren’t  judgment calls either, as offside penalties are clear as day to any line judge in the NFL