Pro Football Focus unveiled their list of the Top 101 players from the 2015 season this past week. Only one member of the Cleveland Browns cracked the list, and it shouldn't be too difficult to figure out who that is: LT Joe Thomas. He was the highest-ranked offensive lineman on the list at No. 12 overall, finishing better than he did a year ago (No. 20):
12. Joe Thomas, LT, Cleveland Browns (20)
Since entering the league, Joe Thomas has been the standard by which pass protection on the quarterback’s blindside has been measured. This season, he was once again the best pass-blocking tackle in the game, surrendering two sacks, but only 24 total pressures in an offense that asked more of its line than many other systems. Thomas ended the year as PFF’s top-graded tackle with a 94.3 mark, just clear of Tyron Smith in second place (93.3); he also earned PFF’s Bruce Matthews Award, which goes to the league’s best lineman over a season.
Best performance: Week 5 at Baltimore: +5.9
Key stat: Thomas remains the standard of pass protection at tackle, posting a pass-blocking efficiency of 97.4—the best mark for the position.
RT Mitchell Schwartz was technically credited to the Browns at No. 68 overall since the rankings are reflective of the players' 2015 seasons. However, since he signed a free agent deal with the Kansas City Chiefs, it just doesn't feel fitting to say the Browns had two players in the Top 101 at this point.
The Bengals had four players make the list (DT Geno Atkins, WR A.J. Green, TE Tyler Eifert, and CB Adam Jones). The Steelers had three players make the list (WR Antonio Brown, QB Ben Roethlisberger, and OLB James Harrison). The Ravens had one player make the list (OG Marshal Yanda).
Are there any other Browns who are still on the roster who should have warranted a spot on the list? TE Gary Barnidge is probably the only player who might merit some consideration, especially when you figure that TE Jordan Reed made the list.