One thing is clear throughout the start of NFL preseason, the Cleveland Browns stole Jarvis Landry, one of the league’s best receivers because the Dolphins didn’t want to pay him or risk losing him for nothing next offseason.
New general manager John Dorsey inherited a team bereft of veteran leadership and experience. At no position was this more apparent than the team’s receiver corps. Dorsey changed that in a heartbeat, sending fourth- and seventh- round picks for Landry, the league’s reception leader in 2017, but a player whose contract would expire following the upcoming season.
The trade, following by the quick long-term extension, exemplifies Dorsey’s proven NFL roster management acumen.
If you have followed the Browns for any amount of time over the last few years, you should know the team has had a void at the receiver position. But not for a lack of trying. Cleveland had drafted multiple guys on the first two days of the draft, it brought in veterans Dwayne Bowe and Kenny Britt, and it waited patiently as Josh Gordon dealt with league disciplinary actions.
But it has never had a player like Landry.
The 25-year-old receiver is more than a league reception leader. Landry brings fire, drive, leadership, and commitment to the young Browns, qualities that are only matched by the tremendous receiving talent he has flashed already during training camp.
Call him only a “slot receiver” because of his usage in Miami, but that is a disservice to the talent he is showing he possesses.
Jarvis Landry with a crazy catch How many games will the Browns win this year? pic.twitter.com/wdSIZJCw0h— Friday Night Football Florida (@FNFMagFL) August 3, 2018
Although not a pure speed guy, Landry’s route-running, sticky-glue hands, and ability to make plays after the catch make him one of the very best players at the position. The term “playmaker” is thrown around a lot in the NFL, and Landry is showing every day why the Browns appear to have finally found one.
New quarterback Tyrod Taylor is more aware than anyone of Landry’s ability as he has leaned on him heavily in the passing game throughout camp.
It’s still early, but Landry is emerging as an offensive weapon for the Browns. He has proven it on Sundays already, he’s emerging into the prime of his career, and he has a team and quarterback that believe in him.
You’d be hard-pressed to argue that the once hapless Browns aren’t starting to at least get some things right.