Top 5 2013 Fantasy Football Players for the Cleveland Browns
Top Five 2013 Fantasy Football Players: Cleveland Browns
Now I have to admit, I don’t live in Ohio but I love the Cleveland Browns! This speaks to the fact that the Browns have the largest fan base in the world!
In 2013 the Browns got a real shot in the arm on offense when new Head Coach Rob Chudzinski hired his old mentor and offensive mastermind Norv Turner to be the Browns Offensive Coordinator. Turner brings with him a resume full of past and present fantasy stars. Philip Rivers, Frank Gore, Ricky Williams, Michael Irvin, LaDanian Tomlinson and Emmitt Smith all soared to fantasy heights in Norv Turner driven offenses.
Turner’s style of offense calls for throwing the ball deep and stretching out opposing defenses to set the running game against only a seven man box. At the same time Turner isn’t the kind of coach who forces his players to be something they’re not. He excels at finding each player’s individual strength and tweaks his offense to make the most of it.
If Norv Turner is the mind of the Browns' new offense, then Brandon Weeden and Trent Richardson are its beating heart. The Browns Offensive Line has slowly been built up into a serious strength. They have the ability to protect Weeden, while also ripping open and grading the road for what should be a smash mouth run game.
The Browns also went out during the off season and acquired slot sensation Davone Bess to help give Weeden a play maker who can handle working in traffic with Jordan Cameron. This is a team that has quietly been stocking the pantry with talent that can help your fantasy team win this season.
Here is a deeper look at the Top 5 Browns players who can be a force on your 2013 Fantasy Team.
#5: Josh Gordon
Josh Gordon is an interesting player in that he is a long-strider who can be a dynamic play maker. Usually skill position players who are taken in the supplemental draft fail to rise higher than special-teamers and bench-warmers. Gordon was a dynamic receiver last year who caught 50 balls for 805 yards and five scores. At the end of last season he was primed to grow into a top NFL talent.
He followed up his opening campaign by drawing a two week suspension for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy. Reports out of camp so far this year have been that he is loafing around, failing to put in the kind of extra time and extra effort required for him to develop to his potential. If Josh Gordon can clean up his act and stay motivated he could be a fantasy force.
On draft day he will go seriously undervalued and rightfully so. He’s a late round pick that I would grab around round No. 12 and hope he rises to his ceiling rather than sink with the anchor of being yet another talented player who couldn’t overcome his character issues.
#4: Davone Bess
Davone Bess was brought in this off season to play in the slot. He is a greasy weasel that can slip through the middle of opposing defenses. To be honest with you, his presence improves the value of Brandon Weeden more than it makes him a force in Fantasy Football. His strength as a possession receiver gives him added value in a PPR scoring format. I would draft him after the No. 12 round to fill in as a No. 4 WR.
#3: Jordan Cameron
The third year is typically the point in a receiver’s career when the game slows down and comes into focus. This puts a spotlight on the man-tower that is Jordan Cameron. He’s a 245 pound pass- catching tight end that runs a 4.59 in the 40-yard dash. Last year he averaged 11.3 yard per catch and took four of his 20 catches for 20 yards or more. At 6’5” tall with a 37 inch vertical he can go up for balls that only NASA could defend.
Norv Turner is looking to transform Cameron into the second coming of Antonio Gates. Cameron will go under the radar in a lot of leagues, so you’ll be able to grab him late at a huge value. Draft him as your No. 2 tight end and watch his upside continue to climb as he and Weeden get on Norv Turner’s page.
#2: Brandon Weeden
Last year the Browns gambled on drafting 28-year-old Brandon Weeden with the No. 22 overall pick. The hope was that because of his age and a very productive college career that he could adjust to the NFL game quickly. He was forced to transition into a West Coast style of offense that called for quick reads and high percentage, short passed. What we got was a season where Weeden looked indecisive and inaccurate while throwing only 14 touchdowns to 17 interceptions.
With that kind of stat line no one is going to be reaching to grab him as their No. 1 fantasy quarterback. Still there is reason to hope for improvement. At Oklahoma State Weeden played in the Shotgun formation. Rob Chudzinski and Norv Turner both like to call plays out of the Shotgun. This should put Weeden back in an offense he’s more comfortable with.
Adding Davone Bess and the third year development of Jordan Cameron will give him targets in the middle of the field to help him succeed. You should be able to draft Weeden in one of the last five rounds to serve as your fantasy backup quarterback to help you through your starter’s bye week.
#1: Trent Richardson
There has been a lot of talk during the offseason about Trent Richardson’s injury concerns, all of which add up to minor dings, scrapes and sprains. These are the sort of injuries you expect to hear about a bell cow running back piling during the course of a season.
Richardson is the Browns' biggest play maker and the guy who makes the offense go. He’s the kind of three-down back Norv Turner loves to feed the ball to. He will be playing behind a road grader offensive line, who sure to impress with the holes they rip in opposing defenses. Richardson shows up in a lot of fantasy boards somewhere between No. 6 to 8 in the running back ranks. I suspect he’ll finish in the top five of all fantasy players.
You should draft him in the middle to late part of the first round to be your team’s Number 1 RB.