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Community Convo: Who should return punts for the Browns this year?

One of the few uncertainties heading into the season is who is the Browns punt returner

Cleveland Browns v Houston Texans Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns have very few question marks going into the start of training camp. Don’t get us wrong, there are still a lot of questions about how they will perform but, outside of injury, the roster seems pretty set except for the last couple of positions.

Who will start next to Dalvin Tomlinson will be interesting. How the receivers are used outside of Amari Cooper will be fun to watch. Will the team add another running back to join Nick Chubb and Jerome Ford? Which linebackers get most of the time on defense?

The Browns roster doesn’t, however, have certainty for punt returners.

Last year, Cleveland returned just 31 total punts. The problems on defense had the Browns in the middle of the pack in terms of the number of returns.

In 2022, WR Donovan Peoples-Jones led the way with 18 punt returns including his exciting 76-yard touchdown versus the Houston Texans (pictured above). RB/WR Demetric Felton had seven, practice squad call-up WR Chester Rogers had four and WR Jaelon Darden had the other two.

Jakeem Grant was supposed to take on the role but tore his Achilles before the start of the season.

In 2023, DPJ is locked in as the team’s #2 receiver in what is expected to be a heavy passing team. Grant redid his contract but has zero guaranteed dollars so he, along with Felton and Darden will be fighting for roster spots.

Ford was the team’s primary kick returner but now moves up from the fourth running back to the primary backup. Adding punt return duties would be too risky.

So we turn to our Dawg Community. Who do you think should be returning punts this year? We want to encourage a conversation in the comments below and help us figure it out. I’ll put my guess in later as I don’t want to push an agenda off the bat.