Cleveland Browns Secondary Vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers Wide Receivers Preview
The competition between the Browns and the Buccaneers this Sunday will feature an interesting matchup, Cleveland's raw and thin secondary goes up against a questionable set of wide receivers.
The most experience any of the wide receivers playing for Tampa Bay is five years with two rookies on the squad.
The Bucs biggest receiving threat actually appears to be Kellen Winslow, the former Cleveland Brown.
However, the Browns secondary isn't exactly an elite squad, so let's break it down.
Kellen Winslow, Jr., otherwise known as "The Souljah," to disgruntled Browns fans everywhere, was traded to the Bucs shortly after Eric Mangini assumed control of the Browns in 2009.
Winslow's track record in Cleveland was a guy who played hard—when he could get on the field. His rookie season ended early with an injury, and then before he could even get into training camp the next season, he decided to tear up what was left of his leg by doing motorcycle stunts in a parking lot.
Winslow's ability to break away from the line was severely diminished following these injuries and subsequent staph infections, and he's prone to committing penalties and hoping the refs don't see them to get away from coverage.
Rookie T.J. Ward is expected to be doing most of the coverage on Winslow, so it'll be a good learning experience for the rookie, and a chance to see how fast Ward adapts to the speed of the pro game.
While Joe Haden isn't listed as a starter going into Week 1, he's an enormously talented player who eventually will be a fixture in the Browns secondary.
Expect Haden to come out in certain packages and get matched up against the other rookies like Arrelious Benn.
Arrelious Benn is a big guy, but he's a rookie, so the Browns have an opportunity to capitalize on his inexperience.
With the Bucs probably focused on a running attack, don't expect much out of Benn in Week 1, but don't be surprised to see quarterback Josh Freeman try and send some deep balls his way.
The Browns weren't exactly known for stopping the pass last year.
The Browns acquired Sheldon Brown from the Eagles this past offseason, and he represents the biggest offseason upgrade to the secondary.
Brown will get you tackles, but he doesn't have a lot of blitz potential with only seven career sacks in eight seasons.
Defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, though, is fond of mixing things up, so don't be surprised to see Brown doing a little more corner blitzing this season.
However, he's a bigger threat breaking up the passing game, so he'll probably stick to what he does best, ruining a good quarterback's day.
Eric Wright is one of the more capable cornerbacks the Browns have, and he needs to lead by example in 2010.
The raw receivers of Tampa Bay should be perfect cannon fodder for Wright to make some good plays.
Wright makes a lot of tackles, and he's an interception threat. With the youth on the Bucs offense, if Wright can be aggressive without drawing interference penalties, he can grab balls from the inexperienced wide receivers who may not fight for the ball the way a more experienced veteran would.
The Bucs probably are going to focus on the running game, and trust in Cadillac Williams to try and poke holes through the Browns nebulous defensive line.
That being said, you can't have a one-sided offensive attack, so keep your eyes open for the passes, and see which unit is more prepared for the regular season Sunday at 1 p.m.