Over at ESPN this past week, they posted an article looking at the “99 NFL players, coaches and themes that will define the 2018 season.” The article was segmented into different categories, but the Cleveland Browns were represented quite a bit. Let’s take a look how.
Tyrod Taylor was up first in the “quarterbacks on the hot seat” category. He was one of eight quarterbacks listed on the hot seat, but his inclusion was because “No. 1 overall choice Baker Mayfield will not sit forever.”
In the category of “veteran non-QBs who need to prove it,” Josh Gordon led things off in a group of nine players. The article says, “Gordon is playing on a one-year deal for the NFL’s minimum salary, with a chance to earn much more if he avoids trouble.” The misnomer with that is that Gordon will still be a restricted free agent after this year, so he kind of has two years to go.
Hue Jackson was listed as one of six “coaches on the hot seat.” ESPN says, “Jackson seemed to defy the odds when new general manager John Dorsey retained him, but with a 1-31 record over two seasons, will he have staying power?” I think he does for 2019, but he needs to deliver on the goods this year, or else.
In the category of “potentially volatile situations,” one of the things highlighted as “the Browns’ personality surplus.” What do they mean by that? All of the personalities on the coaching staff and the GM. “There are strong, opinionated and outspoken personalities in Cleveland, with general manager John Dorsey, coach Hue Jackson, offensive coordinator Todd Haley and defensive coordinator Gregg Williams in prominent roles.”
Last, but not least, Tyrod Taylor was mentioned yet again, this time in the category of “potential trade bait:”
The following two possibilities are not mutually exclusive: (1) Taylor plays well as the starting quarterback for the first two months and (2) the Browns start 2-6 anyway. If that happens, and they decide it’s time to give the job to No. 1 overall pick Baker Mayfield, Cleveland could look to move Taylor, whose contract voids at the end of this season, to a contender whose QB got hurt or is underperforming.
Hmmm, I hadn’t thought about Taylor being traded this year. And frankly, that’s because I firmly believe he’ll get the majority of the season to be “the guy.”