Last year notwithstanding, the Cleveland Browns do not have a rich recent history of wide receiver duos on their roster. The previous wide receiver tandem to go over 200 targets for the Browns was Terrelle Pryor and Corey Coleman. Yikes!
This year’s crop of wide receivers, similar to 2019, is a top-heavy group. Fortunately for the wide receivers behind Beckham and Landry, both players are on the mend, and there will be opportunities to work with Baker Mayfield.
Snapshot of the depth chart
Key Departures: None
Factors Surrounding the Wide Receivers
I need to see what Beckham and Landry can do together healthy. In 2019, both players dealt with injuries, which could have slowed them down to impact their overall performance. Even with these injuries, both players rarely left the field; they played over 93% of the Browns’ offensive snaps.
With two target hogs on the field, there isn’t much room for targets behind either one. On top of limited opportunities for targets, the Browns won’t have a use for a deep wide receiver bench. The Browns expect to play primarily out of 12-personnel (two tight ends), and there won’t be much playing time available for anyone else.
My concern for the Browns, even though there won’t be much playing time, is the depth. Beckham and Landry are amazing but there are serious questions about the other players behind them. If the Browns move on from either, or both, in the coming offseason or two, the Browns will have serious question marks at the position.
I don’t have concerns about this position on the football team. The Browns have two elite targets at wide receiver for Baker Mayfield. The Browns also made a smart move to re-sign Rashard Higgins, who has shown good chemistry with Mayfield in the past. They also drafted explosive rookie, Donovan Peoples-Jones, on Day 3 of the 2020 NFL Draft.
Odell Beckham: 88 receptions (144 targets), 1,226 yards, 7 TDs
Jarvis Landry: 93 receptions (144 targets), 1,150 yards, 6 TDs
Rashard Higgins: 31 receptions (43 targets), 297, 2 TDs
*Only projected the top-3