#2 – OL Joel Bitonio
The offense is going be lead in part by Joel Bitonio. Easily the third-best lineman to be part of the Cleveland Browns since 1999. He’s only slightly behind perennial Pro Bowler Alex Mack, and both men are looking way up at the greatest left tackle in NFL history in Joe Thomas. To even be in that grouping though shows you how good the 28-year-old guard has become.
Already a two-time Pro Bowler, the former product of Nevada University has shown to be an excellent blocker in both the running game and the passing attack. He’s nimble left to right, which allows him to seal off pass rushers, as well as having the bullish strength to get defensive tackles off their feet in the running game.
Bitonio came out of that disastrous 2014 NFL Draft for the Browns that saw the team pick cornerback bust Justin Gilbert at number eight overall, and quarterback bust Johnny Manziel at the 22nd pick; both in the first round. Bitonio was picked 35th overall in the second round. Linebacker Christian Kirksey, who if healthy should be another name to consider for this list, and running back Terrence West was also part of that 2014 Draft class.
Since that Draft nearly six years ago, Bitonio has become a stalwart on the line. Performing consistently each and every week, making him a viable and extremely important piece of the team moving into 2020. In order to get this team over the hump, the front office will need to ensure that Bitonio has help on his left.
Here’s hoping the team can get to the playoffs so another great offensive lineman doesn’t get screwed out of playing in the postseason.