It is pretty easy to see by any common Browns fan that the Browns have a wide receiver issue. It is weird that we’re at this point, not even halfway through this season. I say that because going into the season, Jarvis Landry and Josh Gordon were preaching to the media that the Browns had the best wide receiving core in the NFL. Well, that didn’t age well. The Browns are currently tied for second in the NFL for most dropped passes with 12 and lead the NFL in the percentage of passes dropped with 8.4%. It could not be any more apparent how much of an issue this is than it was on Sunday when two of our drops would have been touchdowns.
As we know, the Browns started the season off with high hopes as their three starting receivers were Jarvis Landry, Josh Gordon and Antonio Callaway. Landry was just signed to a big contract, Gordon was coming into the season with hopes of being his old self and Callaway had huge potential as a fourth-round pick that had first-round talent. Now that we’re in Week 7, Landry has been on the decline since Week 3., Gordon was traded to the Patriots after Week 1 and Callaway hasn’t been able to impress with continuous drops. Outside of the three receivers, Rashard Higgins was emerging as a number three, but he is out with an injury until at least Week 8. Derrick Willies was placed on IR and Rod Streater is out for the year. Oh yeah and don’t forget Corey Coleman was traded before the season and then was dropped by the Bills and Patriots.
So, what do the Browns do to fix the issue? Their first move was to sign Breshad Perriman. Perriman is a former first-round pick for the Baltimore Ravens. He has been extremely underwhelming, so there aren’t many reasons to feel any better about the receiving. However, he hasn’t played for the Browns yet, so we’ll see what he can do. Otherwise, the Browns have signed some receivers from their practice squad and had some receivers tryout recently, but all of them are no-names.
I haven’t been very impressed with the moves that have been made to try and fix the wide receiver problem that the Browns have. Before the season, they made a move for Dez Bryant, but he wasn’t satisfied with the offer. I don’t know what he’s looking for since he was offered more from other teams and still turned them down. I think that ship has sailed. Rishard Matthews is an experienced receiver that is a free agent currently, but the Browns have seemed to show no interest in going after him. The move that could make the biggest improvement and has gained some speed lately is trading for Odell Beckham Jr. It makes sense, but I don’t see that happening at all. Even though we have a vast amount of cap space, I can’t imagine John Dorsey wanting two of his top salaries to be wide receivers.
Some receivers that are noteworthy and in free agency are Markus Wheaton, Jeremy Kerley, Malcolm Mitchell and Rashad Greene. Since Dorsey already picked up Perriman, I don’t see him making any other additions. Unfortunately, I really don’t see any big moves happening to try and fix the problem. Damian Ratley did well this past week as the number three receiver. The offense tried to focus more on David Njoku and Duke Johnson as receivers and found some success with this. I expect this to be the most likely option and just hope for some improvements from the receivers. As hard as it is, we may have to continue cringing when the ball is in the air and hope someone catches the ball, preferably someone for the Browns.