The Cleveland Browns did a ton to revamp their pass catchers this offseason to put QB Deshaun Watson in the best position to succeed in 2023. They may not be done as WR DeAndre Hopkins continues his free-agent tour but the best receiver on the team, Amari Cooper, is also the team’s most versatile.
When GM Andrew Berry traded for WR Elijah Moore, in a deal that also brought in WR Cedric Tillman in the NFL draft, most believed the team had found their slot receiver. The quick, fast Moore seemed to fill the slot role perfectly with Donovan Peoples-Jones and Cooper on the outside.
Interestingly, Cooper accumulated over a third of his receiving yards and almost half of his touchdowns from the slot in 2022, according to Pro Football Focus. PFF has Cleveland’s top receiver as their top-graded slot receiver last year as well, tied with Justin Jefferson:
The additions of Marquise Goodwin and Tillman give HC Kevin Stefanski a lot of flexibility on the outside but Moore’s pure speed, not just quickness, also makes him a threat outside, especially with a player of Cooper’s caliber in the slot. Great speed with elite agility is the highlight of Moore’s athletic testing:
Elijah Moore is a WR prospect in the 2021 draft class. He scored a 8.68 RAS out of a possible 10.00. This ranked 331 out of 2499 WR from 1987 to 2021. https://t.co/YS9wlnzxu0 #RAS via @Mathbomb pic.twitter.com/4tGTXIlkDs— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) April 7, 2021
While the common assumption is that Cooper is an outside receiver and Moore is a slot guy, flipping the two, especially on the same side of the field, could be a potent combination for the Browns in 2023.
Are you surprised by Cooper’s slot data?