1. Cleveland Browns: Anthony Schwartz, WR
After a preseason reading and watching Donovan Peoples-Jones, it was a bit surprising to see Anthony Schwartz’s number called so often.
But with Odell Beckham Jr. out, Stefanski obviously wanted to make Schwartz and his speed a part of the game plan. Remember, the Browns didn’t really have that downfield threat in the AFC Divisional round last season.
The rookie’s average depth of target was 24.4 yards, a mark which led the squad. He had three catches for 69 yards, while also adding 17 yards on the ground via a reverse.
Schwartz’s performance particularly stood out because he played so sparingly throughout training camp and the preseason. Fans didn’t get a look at him until the final preseason game, and even then, it wasn’t a slam dunk he’d be on the field.
As a third-round pick, Schwartz isn’t as finally tuned as some of his peers taken earlier in the draft, but with OBJ out, the Browns couldn’t afford to waste his speed on the sideline.
Until OBJ gets back, Schwartz will offer Stefanski the downfield threat he needs. His progression will also be of interest because you’ve got to wonder if he could be Beckham’s replacement in the near future.