We are currently in process of doing brief reviews of all of the free agents on the Cleveland Browns. Today, we take a look at last year's slot receiver.
How and When He Joined the Browns: When Eric Mangini dealt Braylon Edwards to the New York Jets in 2009, he did a favor to teammates and Browns fans by getting rid of a player who clearly did not want to be in Cleveland. In return, the Jets gave up two players, Stuckey and Jason Trusnik, a third-round pick, and a fifth-round pick. Stuckey barely played in his first season with the Browns. Maybe it was because he was not used to the new offensive system, but I hate using that excuse, especially since he previously played under Mangini.
Productivity Level Last Season: Not everyone expected Stuckey to have a 40 catch season last year for 346 yards. That is the type of production that can make you suffer some pretty harsh consequences as a result of a poor bet. It was a tale of two seasons for Stuckey, unfortunately. He started off the year playing very well -- in his first 10 games, he already had 31 catches and was making nifty moves to help move the chains in third down situations. Over his final 6 games though, he only had 9 receptions, many of which were painful to watch because defenders started keying in on what he was doing and would stop him shy of a first down every time. Stuckey also was the goat in the game against the Jets where he had a first down in overtime that put Cleveland near field goal range, but tried to fight for more yardage and ended up fumbling the football.
Why Keeping Him Could Make Sense: The Browns have more invested in Brian Robiskie and Mohamed Massaquoi (both former second round picks), but Stuckey had more receptions than any other wide receiver on the team last year. As much as he struggled in the second half of the season at moving the chains, he has shown he can regularly catch the ball well enough and could serve as a good No. 3 or No. 4 receiver on the team if you ditch a guy like Carlton Mitchell, don't have a regular receiving role for Joshua Cribbs, or give up on one of Robiskie or Massaquoi.
What the Browns Should Do: I don't see the Browns giving up on either of their former second-round picks, and unless Greg Little is a complete wreck, there is no way he isn't at least one of the top four receivers on the team to start the season, with the vocal Cribbs taking the other receiver spot. To bring Stuckey back into that mix would only take reps away from guys with either equal or greater potential. We carried a boatload of receivers who did nothing last year; one of them can fill the fifth receiver spot if necessary.
Now it's your turn -- vote in the poll below on whether or not the team should try to re-sign Chansi Stuckey!