The Cleveland Browns need a lot of improvements on the offense in 2020 and one of the biggest problem positions happens to be the tight ends.
Everyone knows the Cleveland Browns need help on the offensive line, but what most people fail to realize is that the Browns really need help all over the offense. For most of the season, the Browns were a four-player offense. The offense was so tied to Jarvis Landry, Odell Beckham Jr., and Nick Chubb that those three players alone accounted for 63% of the offensive yards gained.
All of the tight ends combined were only targeted 73 times, with 44 receptions for a whopping 497 yards. They didn’t show up at all last year and considering for half the year the team didn’t have a second running back to spell Chubb, nor any slot receivers, the team was overly dependent on four guys to move the chains. It’s no wonder why Baker Mayfield struggled. He had to force throws to one of two men the entire season.
If you’re supposed to have this killer offense, it helps if you can actually convince the defense you’re not just going to hand the ball to Chubb or throw it to Beckham or Landry. Part of improving the offense and in turn Mayfield’s play and the production of the star wide-outs will be to get a reliable tight end. Keyword, reliable. People can go on and on and on about David Njoku’s “potential” but the only thing potential ever does is get people fired.
Njoku for one reason or another can’t stay on the field, and that doesn’t appear to be changing anytime soon. Njoku only had the 600+ yards that he had in 2018 because there wasn’t a concerted effort to involve Landry and Beckham hadn’t joined the team yet. Njoku was the second most targeted player. He could very well come out and wreck the league in year four, but what are the odds of that?
There doesn’t appear to be a definitive first-round tight end pick in 2020, so it’s entirely possible that the three best options could all be waiting for them in the second round. Despite that, there will still be a 4th or 5th round option on this list. So with that, let’s dive into the options.