As it has for the past few years, this year’s Cleveland Browns roster looks awesome on paper.
From having an elite secondary and two top-tier edge rushers to having arguably the best run-game and offensive line in the league, it’s exciting to think about what this roster will do this season– despite past shortcomings.
Getting excited for this 21 personnel grouping to be on the field at the same time:
QB – Deshaun Watson
RB – Nick Chub
RB – Kareem Hunt
WR – Amari Cooper
WR – Donovan Peoples-Jones
TE – David Njoku
— Watson Garrett Stefanski Era 🐶 (@MylesOffTheEdge) July 2, 2022
But like any great roster, there are always a few soft spots.
Teams always have position groups that either lack experience, depth, talent or all three of those factors.
For the Browns, that position group very well could be at defensive tackle.
With young and new talent coming in, there are concerns about what guy can actually make an impact this season.
But even with some concerns looming in the defensive tackle room, it may still not be the Browns’ biggest depth concern.
Reasons To Buy
There are no clear starters at DT
Out of the main names to keep an eye on at training camp -are, Taven Bryan, Jordan Elliot, Sheldon Day, Tommy Togiai and Perrion Winfrey – it’s anyone’s guess who will be starting this fall.
The team could go with their veteran options in Bryan and Day.
They could give their up-and-coming talent in Elliot and Togiai another chance to breakout.
Or they could hope Winfrey will have a special rookie season.
NFL Network Predicts Rookie Success for #Browns Perrion Winfrey
— Pete Smith (@_PeteSmith_) July 10, 2022
Either way, there are no obvious options at starters for the Browns.
The DT room is young and inexperienced
Even with the veteran presence of Bryan and Day, there still isn’t one DT on the team who has started more than 10 games in a season.
Each guy has only worked as a backup or rotational player for a large part of their career.
The Browns now must work with backup and rotational players to find season-long starters at a very physical position.
Reasons to sell
The WR room has depth concerns
While there are wide receiver tandems that are much worse than Amari Cooper and Donovan Peoples-Jones, it’s going to be very concerning if one of those guys goes down.
There isn’t much depth behind Peoples-Jones if he is injured.
And if Cooper gets injured, it will be concerning to have to turn to Peoples-Jones as WR1, especially when he has been underwhelming when serving that role in the past.
The offensive line has depth concerns
While the Browns do have one of the best offensive lines in the league (if not the best) things can get ugly quickly if any of the team’s starters get hurt.
At the tackle position, Chris Hubbard is a great backup but has injury issues of his own, and the team is waiting for second-year player James Hudson III to really turn into a reliable option.
At guard, the team has a few guys in Drew Forbes, Blake Hance and Michael Dunn who are good backup options for a few quarters or games, but get risky and unreliable if asked to play for a wider range of games.
And at center, the team is asking former backup Nick Harris to now start, leaving concerns on whether Harris’s backups will be serviceable enough.
I am very excited for Nick Harris. #Browns fans are going to love his personality off the field, as well. https://t.co/oEBawtsirK
— Nick Pedone (@NickPedone12) July 9, 2022
Final decision: Sell
Despite concerns with what will likely be a lackluster DT room this year, it probably won’t be the biggest concern for the Browns.
While no guy at DT really stands out, they all should be able to play their roles this season to a fair standard.
And even if one of them gets injured, they will have a teammate of similar skill and quality ready to take their place.
Not to mention they will each be playing in between some of the best edge rushers in the game in Myles Garrett and Jadeveon Clowney.
It’s with other skill positions the team should be concerned with– those positions that have bigger names but lack much more depth.
DT is still my biggest concern. I think we have guys to rush, but not enough beef to stop a run team like Pittsburg or Baltimore, that will try to run us over.