2012 NFL Supplemental Draft : Browns Land Baylor WR Josh Gordon, Good Move?

By Robert D. Cobb

CLEVELAND – With the Cleveland Browns selecting former Baylor wide receiver Josh Gordon in the second round of the 2012 NFL Supplemental Draft, Cleveland made the bold decision of addressing it’s anemic offense.

The addition of the 6’3, 234-pound former product of Baylor and Utah, can only help the Cleveland Browns in the 2012-13 season, it surely cannot hurt.


Going into training camp, the Browns will have Greg Little, Mohamed Massaqoui, Jordan Norwood, Joshua Cribbs, Carlton Mitchell and rookies in Travis Benjamin and Josh Cooper on the depth chart.

Little’s 61 receptions were second among rookies behind Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver, A.J. Green and his 709 yards receiving were fifth among all rookies in 2012.  Cribbs would have a solid year in his first full year as a wide receiver in catching 41 passes for 518 yards and four touchdowns.

The most pleasant surprise for the Browns in the 2011-12 season was Norwood, who would emerge as a solid third receiver in catching 23 passes for 268 yards and one touchdown.  Norwood’s 23 catches on 34 targets easily made him the Browns most sure-handed receiver in a corps that led the NFL in drops with 43.

Benjamin, the 5’10, 175-pound speedster from the University of Miami, has impressed in OTA’s and mini-camps with his blazing speed and reliable hands.  At Miami, Benjamin would catch 41 passes for 669 yards and score three touchdowns. Benjamin would also average 14.9 yards per catch for the Hurricanes during the 2011-12 season.

While the additions of Gordon and Benjamin may provide the Browns with some much-needed speed on the outside and a possible No.2 receiver outside of Little, the question remains, who is the odd man out in Cleveland?

While some may think it could be Mitchell, in his defense, Mitchell has not had enough snaps and playing time to warrant such a move, Massaqoui on the other hand, may be a possible target due to his drop in production and recent string of injuries.

Since being drafted by the Browns 50th overall in the second round out of Georgia, the fourth-year wide receiver has caught a combined 67 passes for 867 yards and four touchdowns.  Massaqoui would become the fourth rookie in franchise history to lead the Browns in receiving with 624 yards.

Since 2010, Massaqoui has sustained various injuries to his knee, bone in his left leg—and most infamously—a horrific head-to-head helmet hit from Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison in 2010.

Massaqoui would also experience a head injury against the Houston Texans in 2011.  With the Browns selection of Gordon, it may not only be a sign of a reboot at the wide receiver spot in Cleveland, but the signal of a new direction entirely.

The addition of Gordon—minus his off-field issues with marijuana—should provide the Browns a much needed jolt on offense in 2012.

Whether or not Gordon will emerge as the No.2 receiver remains to be seen, but for Cleveland, using 2013’s second-round pick on a player—who has not played in a year—better turn out to be the right move for the Browns sooner rather than later.

Robert D. Cobb is the NBA Network Manager for Rant Media Network, Featured Writer of the Cleveland Cavaliers, and Featured Columnist for the Cleveland Browns and Arsenal Gunners.

In addition to covering the NBA, I also cover MLB, NFL, NHL and Champions League soccer news, rumors and opinions, please follow me on Twitter at @RobertCobb_76

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