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Browns rookie 4th round selection Travis Benjamin.
The Browns are counting on the outrageous speed of rookie fourth-round selection out of the University of Miami, Travis Benjamin, who is reported to have run a 4.26 40-yard dash and clocked a 4.36 during the NFL Scouting Combine, good for second best.
"He's a flier, a great athlete, tremendously fast," ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. said of Benjamin.
There's been speculation that Benjamin will compete for a role in the slot, but that may be an assumption mistakenly placed on his 5'10" and 172lb. measurables. Benjamin's talent may lend itself more to use his quickness to beat bump-and-run and then stretch the field vertically out wide. It now appears that he will be used to add skill variety behind Mohammed Massaquoi. The goal? Decongestion.
A telling Mike Holmgren quote from May: "He's smaller and quicker. He's a different receiver. We have bigger guys, not slow guys, but they're bigger."
Speed has been an area the Browns have been sorely lacking for some time. Speed is a quality that adds another dimension to the field—stretches it, opens it up—especially when teams are stacking the box to stuff Trent Richardson.
At the U, Benjamin caught 41 passes for 609 yards and three touchdowns in 2011 and, notably, ended his time there with 2,146 total reception yards. Only five other players have put up more than 2,000 receiving yards in Hurricane history. The Browns brass like to call Benjamin "fast-on-fast," which will no doubt help, as long as he has the hands to match.
Of course, let it not go unnoticed that Browns rookie QB Brandon Weeden has the arm to make defenses take the vertical threat seriously.