Today's NFL preview will focus on the Cleveland Browns, a team with a bright future that still needs development.
The Cleveland Browns, an NFL power for much of the league's early era who rebounded in the 1980s with several strong seasons are seeking a return to the glory days and their chances could be pretty good.
To me, the key to the Browns' success is second-year signal-caller Colt McCoy, who in his rookie season of 2010, tossed for 1,576 yards, six touchdowns and nine interceptions while completing a respectable 60.8 percent of his passes.
While McCoy must improve his TD/INT ratio, I think he has a great chance to do so as he plays much bigger than his diminutive status and is the closest thing the Browns have had at quarterback since Bernie Kosar, the impetus of their last significant playoff run.
McCoy will have plenty of help as tailback Peyton Hillis amassed 1,554 scrimmage yards in 2010 and has helped the Browns exponentially in numerous ways since being acquired from my Denver Broncos for Brady Quinn. (one of the rare times the Browns have bested the Broncos:)
Anyway, Joshua Cribbs returns as a jack of all trades weapon for Cleveland who should continue to be a threat anytime he can get his hands on the ball, while Mohammed Massaquoi serves as another solid wideout for the Browns.
Defensively, free agent acquisition Usama Young brings some championship experience from the New Orleans Saints while Scott Fujita, Chris Gocong and Joe Haden are other stalwarts which should assist the Browns in their quest toward capturing the AFC North title.
At first glance, it may seem the Browns have done little to challenge the Ravens and Steelers in the division, but I learned long ago to never count McCoy out, as he is a gamer who gives it all he's got, a definitive trait Clevelanders already appreciate about him.
Right now, I still see the Browns battling the Bengals for the bottom of the division, but if Hillis remains healthy and McCoy continues to progress, I will likely eat these words.
Under the guidance of president Mike Holmgren, and general manager Tom Heckert Jr., the Browns will be contending sooner rather than later.
To me, however, the "sooner" will occur after 2011.
In any case, thanks for reading.