10. Cavaliers SG Collin Sexton
Often dragged by Cleveland Cavalier fans for being a bullish, ball-hog type of player, Collin Sexton has given the Cavs a steady scoring option every night he plays. While yes, you’d want him to pass the ball just a smidge more when the defensive scheme is on top of him, but he’s young and learning.
Already a 20-point scorer in his second season in Cleveland, Sexton has shown to be a valuable building block for the Cavs. Growing pains are expected but if he continues to improve and learn the rhythm of the pro game a bit more, then Sexton could be the next Cavalier great.
9. Indians SP Mike Clevinger
The Indians are in a great place with Shane Bieber and Mike Clevinger taking their rightful places at the top of the Indians’ rotation. While Bieber is the team’s next ace, that’s because of his youth and flamethrower arm, but right now, Clevinger is the best starter on the team. He’s got a marketable look with Thor-like hair and a punk-rock tattoo sleeve and that hasn’t gotten lost on the Indians fanbase.
While still young at 28 years old, Clevinger is only now stepping out from behind the shadows of Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber, while making a play to be seen as one of the new faces of the franchise along with Bieber, Jose Ramirez, and Francisco Lindor.
8. Browns DE Myles Garrett
The Pittsburgh helmet incident has tarnished his legacy. There is no excuse or defense of what he did. This hurt his overall standing as many in the Browns fanbase rightfully thought he should have been suspended indefinitely following the incident. The moment tarnished his legacy and took focus from a team that was already having its fair share of issues.
That doesn’t mean he can’t earn it back. Yet, the way he’s currently going about it is not helping him at all. Garrett is a tremendous player who’s going to need to work off the bad-mojo the old fashion way; staying out of trouble, producing on the field and being an upstanding citizen in the community.
7. Indians SP Carlos Carrasco
Carlos Carrasco might just be the most beloved and celebrated player right now for the Indians. After battling a life-threatening disease last year, Carrasco came back to pitch only months after the diagnosis and treatment. His desire to battle back and return to form was nothing short of amazing to witness.
While never an All-Star, Carrasco has always been one of the Major’s 20 best starting pitchers since his full-time arrival in 2015. He almost always flirts with 200-strikeouts year after year and has been reliable during both the regular and postseasons.
6. Browns WR Jarvis Landry
The Browns wide-out became just the third receiver since 1999 to go to the Pro Bowl as a member of the club. For Browns fans, Jarvis Landry is someone long overdue to arrive in Cleveland. Landry’s two straight Pro Bowl selections as a Brown is proof that he’s not just one of the best receivers in the league but arguably the best the Browns have had since their return in 1999 if not ever.
Landry is a focal point for next season, with him and TE Austin Hooper going to see many passes coming their way, courtesy of the play-action pass. Should Landry continue this level of production throughout the rest of his contract and beyond, he might find himself moving a few miles south from Cleveland to Canton when it’s all said and done.
5. Browns RB Nick Chubb
While it’s still way too early to anoint Nick Chubb as the best running back since Jim Brown to ever put on a Browns uniform, Chubb isn’t making it easy to avoid that conversation. He’s averaging 5.0 yards a carry and should have two back-to-back 1,000 seasons and would have if the team had started him in all 16 games, and not just the last nine.
Chubb’s production is on another level and while Tennessee’s Derrick Henry is rightfully getting a lot of love by the national media, as far as I’m concerned he can’t carry a torch against Chubb. Chubb is the third-best running back in the league and that’s only because number’s one and two are Christian McCaffery and Saquon Barkley. If Chubb can become a 700-yard type receiver out of the backfield like Barkley and McCaffery, then we’ll talk about Chubb being the top guy at his position.