Cleveland Browns: 4 drafted rookies who could start in 2020

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Cleveland Browns Donovan Peoples-Jones .(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

4. DPJ, the punt returner

No, Donovan Peoples-Jones won’t bump OBJ or Jarvis Landry from the top of the depth chart, but he does have a shot to make a significant impact…on special teams.

Kick returner and punt returners aren’t technically starters, but they’re somone we would like to see if the Browns now re-vamped defense starts shutting teams down.

The kick return game is far from set in stone, however, the Browns did sign 5-foot-7 return specialist JoJo Natson. Plus, the team also have Tavierre Thomas.

While at Michigan, DPJ returned punts in his three seasons wearing Maize and Blue. He had 40 opportunities in his first season, and then 25 and 24, respectively, in his final two campaigns. Overall, he averaged 8.3 yards per return and took two returns to the house. He also had this stellar return against Ohio State in 2017, although the play drew a penalty flag.

DPJ can run, having posted a 4.48 40-time, so he has the speed to be electrifying on returns.

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Kevin Stefanski talked about his ability to return, so the idea of giving him a shot is on the Browns’ radar. It’d be a good way to get him acclimated to the NFL, as his receiving chances will probably be limited behind OBJ and Landry.