Cleveland Browns: 5 players that could benefit from the Kevin Stefanski hire

Cleveland Browns Greg Robinson (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
Cleveland Browns Greg Robinson (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images) /
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Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns Denzel Ward (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /

Denzel Ward

Denzel Ward had a rough year at times. He doesn’t appear to be that good of a tackler, but despite having no real safety help to brag about, Ward did help lead the 7th best passing defense and that should be commended. Ward and Myles Garrett should be praised for their effectiveness in negating the passing game.

With Ward, the goal is to bring in a better second defensive end, as well as some help over the top. Guys like Damarious Randall, Morgan Burnett, and Jermaine Whitehead aren’t the answer. Randall more than either could be on this team long term, as he’s young and efficient enough. If there isn’t an obvious upgrade for both positions, you don’t just get rid of Randall. That said, you do need help behind them. Safety’s are crucial and playing the season with Burnette and Whitehead getting big minutes won’t help anyone.

Stefanski had a future Hall of Famer on his team in Minnesota with Harrison Smith, and is well aware of the difference a great safety has on the passing game. As is any Pop Warner player. Improving the secondary would help Ward truly stand out. Ward is a good corner on his own, but football more than any other sport demands that it’s players move and work as one. Hopefully, Ward will have help in new safeties and a much improved Greedy Williams.

Ward favors differently than Schobert because he’s guaranteed to be in Cleveland, assuming Stefanski and the new front office doesn’t opt to move him. The hope is that Stefanski brings in a quality defensive coordinator, and can shore up some of the issues the defense faced last year. Regardless of Garrett, the team – Ward included – weren’t as efficient in the second half. If you only have one pass rusher then either you’re not a good team, or you don’t have a good scheme. Ward should benefit from improvements to both.