Cleveland Browns Training Camp 2018: LB Preview

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Cleveland Browns Training Camp 2018: LB Preview

Postby liny195 » Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:57 am

Youth Trevon Coley Jersey , Part 2 After covering the top four linebackers on the Cleveland Browns, it’s time to look at the players with the best shot at landing a depth role heading into training camp.Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports5. James Burgess - Backup Outside LinebackerHeight: 6-0 | Weight: 230 lbs | Age: 24Experience: 2 years | College: LouisvilleJames Burgess was one of my darkhorse players to make the roster last season. He ended up playing in 14 games (9 starts), registering 75 tackles and 4 sacks. At first, he was utilized as an extra linebacker in nickel passing situations before taking over for Jamie Collins during his injuries.Burgess exceeded expectations, even playing a little better than Collins had been at times. However, things won’t be handed to him this year with the addition of Mychal Kendricks and the drafting of Genard Avery. Cleveland only regularly played four linebackers in 2017, so Burgess needs to do everything he can to show he’ll make the most of his reps if the team can find him a niche role. I still believe the team likes his abilities in coverage, something he can key in on this preseason.Final Roster Odds: 90%Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports6. Genard Avery - Rookie Middle LinebackerHeight: 6-0 | Weight: 250 lbs | Age: 23Experience: Rookie | College: MemphisGenard Avery was a 5th round pick by the Browns. Many people were high on him for his potential to be a factor at the middle linebacker position. Hue Jackson already said that they are going to start him off at the MIKE, where he will bring a pass-rushing presence.Pro Football Focus said that Avery “had the highest pass-rushing grade in the class (83.5) at his position, more than 6.5 points higher than the next closest.” If Cleveland does like I think they will and cuts back on having two linebackers each play 100% of the snaps, then Avery will be able to fill in for Joe Schobert in some downhill passing situations.Final Roster Odds: 95%Shanna Lockwood-USA TODAY Sports7. B.J. Bello - Backup Outside LinebackerHeight: 6-3 | Weight: 229 lbs | Age: 23Experience: 2 years | College: Illinois StateB.J. Bello was another young player who cracked the roster in 2017 for a depth role. He played in all 16 games, but was primarily on special teams and saw very few snaps defensively. He finished the year with 6 tackles.Bello faces an uphill battle to make the roster, already buried at seventh on our preview list due to two new additions in the offseason. His best shot at making the 53-man roster will be if a player in front of him gets hurt, or if he really makes a strong impression on special teams. Last October , an article was published on Bello, highlighting his background. He, like many undrafted players, chose to sign with Cleveland because he felt it was his best chance at making a roster at the time.Final Roster Odds: 25%Cleveland Browns Training Camp 2018: CB Preview, Part 2 Let’s take a look at the other four cornerbacks competing for a spot on the Cleveland Browns’ roster as we start to wind down our training camp previews.Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports5. Terrance Mitchell - Backup CornerbackHeight: 5-11 | Weight: 191 lbs | Age: 26Experience: 5 years | College: OregonWith all of the additions the Browns have made at cornerback this offseason, one of the forgotten additions is Terrance Mitchell. Mitchell, a former 7th round pick, signed a 3-year, $12 million deal with Cleveland. He was with the Kansas City Chiefs the past two seasons, meaning GM John Dorsey was familiar with him. In 2017, Mitchell started a career-high 9 games and had 4 interceptions.Despite all of the depth the Browns added at cornerback, not everyone is going to make the roster due to the numbers game. Cleveland will carry between 5-6 cornerbacks, but Mitchell may be at somewhat of a disadvantage this far down the depth chart because he hasn’t played much on special teams. The four interceptions from last year will be an eye-popping number, but some of the games in which he was targeted often (with plenty of production against him) stand out for the wrong reason.Final Roster Odds: 50%Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports6. Mike Jordan - Backup CornerbackHeight: 6-1 | Weight: 200 lbs | Age: 25Experience: 3 years | College: Missouri Western StateThe Browns claimed Mike Jordan off waivers from the Rams at the beginning of the 2017 season after having had some ties to defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. Jordan played sparingly throughout the season Denzel Ward Jersey , but got an opportunity to start late in the year against the Baltimore Ravens. In that game, he finished with 8 tackles.What is crazy is that Jordan is only one of two cornerbacks on the Browns who was with the club last year (the other being Briean Boddy-Calhoun). Jordan also logged 3 tackles on special teams a season ago. On defense, he finished the year with 3 passes defended, showing some promise in tight coverage situations. The numbers game will make it tough for him to find a spot on the roster, but this could be a case where Williams favors keeping one of his guys.Final Roster Odds: 50%Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports7. Simeon Thomas - Rookie CornerbackHeight: 6-3 | Weight: 190 lbs | Age: 24Experience: Rookie | College: Louisiana-LafayetteSimeon Thomas was the Browns’ final pick of the 2018 NFL Draft. The Browns have not made it clear whether Thomas will play cornerback or safety as a rookie, but his traits certainly stand out at 6-3, 190 lbs. with a large wingspan and running a 4.46 40-time.According to Draft Analyst, Thomas’ strength are that he “quickly picks up coverage assignments, plays heads-up football and nicely locates the pass in the air” and is “feisty, physical and works hard to break up throws.” His weaknesses are “not consistently playing under control and guessing wrong.” Everything about Thomas screams “practice squad candidate.”Jake Burns of The OBR praised Thomas’ zone coverage skills but panned his open field tackling. Click here for much more of his analysis.Final Roster Odds: 40%Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports8. Denzel Rice - Backup CornerbackHeight: 6-0 | Weight: 185 lbs | Age: 25Experience: 2 years | College: Coastal CarolinaI can imagine that Denzel Ward and Denzel Rice will make for a little bit of confusion. Rice signed with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2015 as an undrafted free agent. Rice saw some action with the Houston Texans in 2016 before being on the Indianapolis Colts’ practice squad last year. Last preseason with the Texans, Rice logged an interception that nearly went for six:Back in June, Nathan Zegura of said that Rice was a sleeper who had impressed during OTAs.Final Roster Odds: 20%
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