Today, the subject is the Cleveland Browns.
Biggest Strength: Josh Cribbs
This is the first time in the series where I have put one player specifically as the strength or weakness.
But Cribbs is an exception.
He is the offense and special teams.
Special is an understatement to describe what Cribbs' worth was to the Browns last season.
There is no better kick/punt returner in the league. Look at this play, for example.
Not only is the blocking terrific, but "Pay That Man" breaks a boatload of tackles. Cribbs runs downhill most of the time, which makes him different than some other returners. Cribbs generally doesn't try to run east and west, but north and south.
The Browns also have special wildcat packages designed for Cribbs. Look at his throwing arm, case in point.
While Cribbs is not a natural receiver, he will catch about 15-20 balls each season.
Even with Cribbs coming off the best year of his career, don't expect it to be nearly as good...unless Todd Haley decides to kick it to Cribbs two times, once after just watching him score a Touchdown. (The game is Week 2, so watch for touchdowns there against the most inept coach in the league.)
Opposing teams will be preparing exclusively for Cribbs this season. If you keep Cribbs from making a game changer, then you only have to deal with the Browns' "offense".
My apologies on the cheap shot. Feel free to blast me, seeing as how I am a Raider fan.
Other Strengths: RB, LT, C, RG, NT, CB
Biggest Weakness: Wide Receiver
This position is downright horrid. And you know what, I almost thought of putting the quarterback spot here.
Before I start, I would like to mention the fact that quarterback play was awful last season. But so was the receiver position.
Braylon Edwards, the Browns best and most inconsistent (and moody) receiver, was dealt to the Jets. Not only did you give Derek Anderson and Brady Quinn no weapons, but you made your rookie receivers develop way too quickly.
Great thinking, Browns. Trade your most talented receiver to a winning team, while getting back virtually nothing! Just wonderful!
On the bright side, Mohammed Massaquoi had a solid rookie season averaging 18 yards a catch. The only problem for the Browns is that they are asking their number one receiver to be a rookie.
Not a good recipe for success, huh? (By the way, the Raiders happened to do the same thing.)
Massaquoi does have a chance to be a good number two receiver for a winning team, but I am afraid the Browns will be looking for a franchise wideout in 2011's receiver heavy draft.
The second rookie receiver they drafted was Brian Robiske. Needless to say, his rookie season was a disaster. He caught only 7 balls.
Do you know how bad that is? It's Darrius Heyward-Bey bad. But just like DHB, Robiskie has had wonderful minicamps.
Speaking of the aformentioned trade, the piece they got back from that was Chansi Stuckey.
All he did for the Browns was catch 18 balls in 12 games!
The Browns drafted Carlton Mitchell from South Florida. This kid is a classic height-weight-speed guy. But, if you can't catch more than 40 balls in the ACC, then you will be considered a major project player.
Other Weaknesses: QB, TE, RT, DE, S
This is the eighth of a 32-part series where I examine the biggest strength and weakness of every NFL team. For disagreements, please put them in the comments section cordially, and I will get back to you as soon as possible. To view previous editions, click the following links: