We know we know we know... “How can you have rankings when teams haven’t played games in 2023?”
Easy, national publications put out different kinds of rankings at different times in the season based on how they see those teams at that time. No different than NFL draft big boards that rank players despite never seeing them play at the NFL level.
Recently, we’ve covered how the Cleveland Browns defensive line was ranked, where the wide receiver group falls (much lower than expected) and even who ranked as the team’s “make-or-break player” for 2023.
NFL power rankings, the original rankings, are in our sights now.
Given everything that GM Andrew Berry has done this offseason including trading for DE Za’Darius Smith and WR Elijah Moore, Pro Football Focus has moved the Browns up 12 spots from before the start of the NFL draft. They also didn’t even note the Smith and Moore additions in their reasoning:
The Browns shored up their defense this offseason by adding safety Juan Thornhill, defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson and edge Ogbonnia Okoronkwo. Drafting Siaki Ika, who posted a 76.4 PFF pass-rushing grade and an 11.6% pass-rush win rate in 2022, will morph their defense into a force to be reckoned with. Cleveland also added to its receiving corps by drafting Tennessee wide receiver Cedric Tillman.
Again, the team will have to prove it on the field but PFF has Cleveland a spot above the Baltimore Ravens (who also have a ton to prove on the field after offseason changes). The Pittsburgh Steelers fall far below the rest of the AFC North with the Cincinnati Bengals leading the way for the division.
Just based on paper, right now before training camp, where would you rank the Browns? Good discussion can be had below in the comment section just like it happens every day in Daily Dawg Chow