Five New Cleveland Browns Players That Should Succeed in 2022

Five New Cleveland Browns Players That Should Succeed in 2022

Ayden Fahlstrom
6 months ago
3 min read
 Browns linebacker Chase Winovich runs a drill in OTA's

This offseason has been a world of change for the Cleveland Browns. Ultimately, the Browns hope their additions step up enough to get the team back over .500 and into a playoff spot for the second time in three seasons.

We’re still a few weeks away from training camp and even longer from the start of the regular season. However, there are five new players on Cleveland’s 2022 roster that should succeed enough to help the Browns get back to the playoffs.

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WR David Bell

The Browns overhauled their wide receiver room this spring, both during free agency and the NFL draft. Among their additions, David Bell is one player who should find some success in the immediate future.

Cleveland drafted Bell in the third round of the draft. Scouts viewed the former Purdue wideout as one of the more polished wide receiver prospects in the draft class, praising his abilities as a route runner and ball catcher. He even won Big Ten Wide Receiver of the Year in 2021 over first-round picks Garrett Wilson and Chris Olave.

What Bell lacks in physical traits, he makes up for in production. Barring a terrible preseason, he’s essentially guaranteed the starting slot receiver job. From there, Browns fans can expect to see the rookie heavily involved in the offense.

EDGE Chase Winovich

Before the Browns re-signed Jadaveon Clowney, it looked like Chase Winovich was going to be starting opposite Myles Garrett on the defensive line. Still, the newcomer should contribute to Cleveland’s overall success.

The Browns traded for Winovich after a disappointing third season with the New England Patriots. After back-to-back 5.5-sack campaigns, the 27-year-old had no sacks and a single QB hit in 13 games. He essentially lost favor in New England’s defensive gameplan, going from 58% of the team’s defensive snaps in 2020 to 14% in ‘21.

However, as teams are drawn to Garrett and Clowney, Winovich should have a chance to get to the quarterback with limited opposition. Don’t be surprised if he reaches 5.5 sacks or even outproduces it despite being in a depth capacity.

DT Taven Bryan

The Browns may have lost Malik Jackson and Malik McDowell — their two starting defensive tackles — over the course of the offseason. But there’s hope for Taven Bryan making their loss a little lighter.

Bryan comes to Cleveland following four seasons with the Jacksonville Jaguars. The former first-round pick was on the field for around half of Jacksonville’s defensive snaps in 2019 and ‘20, registering 51 combined tackles and 15 QB hits. While he only saw 30 percent of the snaps last season, he still registered eight QB hits and a pair of sacks.

The 26-year-old is more of a pass rusher than a run stopper, so expecting him on the field constantly is a reach. That said, Bryan has enough athleticism to add some value to Cleveland’s pass rush.

CB Martin Emerson

After trading out of the second round, the Browns selected Martin Emerson with the fourth pick in Round 3. However, Cleveland thinks its Day 2 corner can be a Week 1 starter.

At 6-foot-2, Emerson is one of the bigger rookie corners out there. The 21-year-old used that size to his advantage at Mississippi State, earning an 89.6 coverage grade on Pro Football Focus last season, the second-best grade among SEC corners since 2020. He also had just one interception in college, a sign that QBs didn’t want to throw his way.

Shortly after drafting Emerson, Cleveland traded veteran corner Troy Hill to open up a starting spot for the rookie. While that certainly adds pressure, having Denzel Ward and Greg Newsome II drawing tougher matchups will help him become an NFL-caliber corner quicker than expected.

QB Jacoby Brissett

The Browns arguably made the biggest trade of the offseason when they acquired Deshaun Watson from the Houston Texans. But with a suspension feeling imminent due to Watson’s off-the-field misconduct, there’s a good chance Jacoby Brissett draws the brunt of Cleveland’s starts behind center.

Brissett has close to 40 games of starting experience under his belt, most recently making five starts for the Miami Dolphins in 2021. The 29-year-old has 36 touchdowns and 17 interceptions to go with 13 rushing touchdowns across six seasons.

Brissett’s ceiling is admittedly limited but consider his situation. The veteran now has an elite offensive line protecting him, a standout running game supporting him, and a fanbase that expects very little until Watson returns.

Few quarterbacks will have as little pressure as Brissett does in 2022, which should make for some fairly strong early-season performances.

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