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Can Anthony Schwartz overcome his struggles? WR has at least one more chance

Browns roster spots are tight, Schwartz continues to struggle to find his footing

NFL: AUG 03 Hall of Fame Game - Jets vs Browns Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

If there is one person that has been the face of criticism during GM Andrew Berry’s tenure with the Cleveland Browns, look no further than wide receiver Anthony Schwartz.

Off the field, Schwartz hasn’t been a problem nor has he shown any signs to be but on the field, it’s been a different story. The 3rd round pick out of Auburn in the 2021 NFL Draft hasn’t necessarily produced since being drafted by the team and finds himself on the roster bubble for this upcoming season.

In the Hall of Fame game against the New York Jets, Schwartz had a lowlight moment in which he fumbled the ball on an end around resulting in a turnover:

Of course, it was inevitable Browns fans decided to pile on after the miscue:

Even an SBNation producer, and Cleveland fan, got a joke in:

Outside of the fumble, Schwartz made some nice plays but the fumble didn’t help his case for making the team. When he catches the ball and holds on to the ball, Schwartz’s speed can be electric. He’s also been a solid gunner on punt coverage teams.

That he was a third-round pick should not be held against Schwartz but should be held against Berry.

People will ask why Schwartz struggled so heavily during his time in Cleveland? I can think of two valid reasons:

Mental Block

The main cause of Schwartz’s issues goes back to Week 2 of the 2021 season.

During the 2nd quarter of that game, Schwartz was running an in-route but he stopped midway while running the route. The ball, which was thrown by former Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield, was behind him and was intercepted.

Mayfield decided to go after the defender and he ended up injuring his shoulder on the play which eventually led to Mayfield playing himself off the team. As for Schwartz, the internet is a cruel and unforgiving place and he was subject to criticism.

Last preseason, Schwartz again struggled this time it was due to dropping catchable passes. Fans booing at a preseason game is rare, but it happened with Schwartz. Football can more of a mental game than physical at times.

From the mental side, a player will tend to make mistakes off simple concepts whether it is missing an assignment, not running the right route or making the right read. In an interview he did last year in December with, Schwartz opened up about his mental health. Schwartz talked about how he almost broke down after the Browns final preseason game against the Chicago Bears and how he decided to get help for his struggles.

Lack of Self-Belief

It would be unfair to say that Anthony Schwartz doesn’t have any talent as a football player. Despite his issues catching the ball and less-than-ideal route running, he has some tools to work with. It’s all about whether or not he can prove that he can do it. Schwartz has shown flashes albeit those flashes have been minor.

He has to show that he has the confidence within himself to make plays when he’s called upon. More times than not, Schwartz tends to cause self-inflicted wounds when he doesn’t have to. The only person stopping Anthony Schwartz from succeeding is Anthony Schwartz.

Schwartz’s confidence may be a bit unsteady at the moment but if he can find the confidence within himself to be a better player, he has a chance to make the roster this season. All it takes is for him to have belief within himself to make it happen.

Schwartz gets another chance on Friday night to try to keep a roster spot going into his third season.

Do you think there is any chance for Schwartz to make the roster? What do you think his biggest issue is? Join the comment section below