May 28, 2014; Berea, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel (2) throws a pass during organized team activities at Cleveland Browns training facility. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

2014 NFL Power Rankings countdown - 31. Cleveland Browns

Use your ← → (arrows) to browse

2014 NFL Power Rankings Countdown

31.  Cleveland Browns (AFC North)

2013 Record:  4-12

Head coach:  Mike Pettine – Pettine has been the defensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills and the New York Jets over the past few seasons.  So he knows the NFL, and more importantly the AFC.  However, he didn’t appear to the Browns first choice for the job.

Best offensive player:  Josh Gordon, wide receiver – Gordon had a huge 2013 season, leading the league in receiving yards with 1,646.  However, Gordon may end up being suspended for 2014 season due to a failed drug test.

Best defensive player:  Joe Haden, cornerback – Joe Haden has emerged as one of the top cover corners in the NFL.  His presence makes the Browns defense better.  He had 6 interceptions and made the pro bowl last season.

Biggest offseason loss:  T.J. Ward, safety – Ward emerged as one of the best safeties in the league last season, so his presence will be missed.  However, the Browns signed free agent Donte Whitner to replace him, so the loss won’t be a big if they hadn’t.

Best new addition:  Johnny Manziel, quarterback – Manziel should open up the season as the starter for the Browns at quarterback.  However, Brian Hoyer might be able to hold him off at first, but eventually Manziel should start at some point.

Biggest strength:  The Browns biggest strength is their secondary led by cornerback Joe Haden.  They also signed free agent safety Donte Whitner from the 49ers.  These two will combine to make the Browns secondary one of the best in the league.  NFL Power Rankings

Biggest weakness:  If Gordon is suspended for the season, then the Browns wide receiving unit will take a huge hit, as they don’t have anyone else capable making plays like Gordon can.   2014 NFL Power Rankings Countdown

The Washington Redskins play the Cleveland Browns in Week 2 of the preseason.

32. Houston Texans

30.  Minnesota Vikings

29.  Jacksonville Jaguars


Want more from Riggo's Rag?  
Subscribe to FanSided Daily for your morning fix.
Enter your email and stay in the know.

Use your ← → (arrows) to browse
Next Redskins Game View full schedule »
Sunday, Sep 77 Sep12:00at Houston TexansBuy Tickets
Dick's Sporting Goods presents "Hell Week":

Tags: Johnny Manziel Josh Gordon Washington Redskins

  • josh

    is this serious or is this a joke? if you think we acquired whitner from buffalo then its not just the browns you kno nothing about its football in general. 31 seems very low considering we improved an already top 10 defense from last yr. it appears as tho you googled the Cleveland browns and then just wrote about the first names you saw.

    • Maurice Barksdale

      It’s no joke, as I confused Whitner with Jairus Byrd. But thanks for pointing that out. However, considering the Browns have a brand new head coach, and uncertainty on offense, I’m not sure how they could be much higher than 31. It’s very possible that they end up the season higher than that though.

      • josh

        understandable but seems to me that there are a lot of teams (your redskins included) that have a new head coach and uncertainty on offense as well as defense. make no mistake there is NO uncertainty on this browns defense. As the seahawks proved this last yr defense wins games so im not sure how you can rank a team with a projected top 3 defense as the second worst team under other teams with uncertainty on both sides of the ball. I could jus be another homer but as a browns fan its kind of my job to be a rabid fan. lol im not saying we should be top ten but 31 certainly seems low even for my browns.

        • Maurice Barksdale

          Trust me Josh, the Redskins won’t be ranked too much higher than the Browns in these rankings. But the Redskins are only a season removed from being a playoff team, and the NFC East isn’t the strongest division.

          The Browns are in a much tougher division than the Redskins, but anything is possible. If Manziel can have a solid rookie season, along with Ben Tate running staying healthy, then the Browns defense could give them enough to put them into contention.

          And I appreciate your comments Josh. With the season approaching, it’s good to interact with passionate football fans.

          • josh

            well as long as my STRONG objections to this ranking are noted! lol. I will be in the dawg pound this year hoping you have severely underrated us like most everyone else. its what us browns fans thrive on!

          • Maurice Barksdale

            That’s all part of the fun, is seeing how it all plays out. That’s why I like the NFL, you never really know what’s going to happen. One year your team sucks, the next year you’re in the playoffs. I’m looking forward to seeing what Manziel is going to do. What’s your opinion on that?

          • josh

            Im personally a Brian Hoyer guy hes a local product just like Whitner, i think that adds a more emotional factor to the way they play and it tends to lift up the players around them and that’s exactly what we saw last yr when hoyer came in. He didn’t have the most eye popping stats but there was a different feel and you could immediately see other players pick up on it and it seemed as tho effort was doubled. IMO i think the ones who decide the starter will be the team regardless if JF starts to look better in practice. with that being said if Manziel gets the team behind him and he has the playbook learned then look out! Hoyer isn’t getting any younger but he has earned this yr and maybe next if he can stay healthy but the thought of Manziel waiting in the wings is a very nice feeling and welcome change in Cleveland. No doubt in my mind tho hoyer starts the season and only way i see Manziel overtaking him this yr is if Hoyer gets hurt.

          • Maurice Barksdale

            Like I said, I like Hoyer. But I remember when people thought Derek Anderson was going to be a good quarterback for the Browns after his 2007 season. And then reality set in. I guess we’ll see if Hoyer is for real, but I think defensive coordinators were caught off guard by Hoyer last season. But now that they have some game film to study on him, I don’t think he’ll be as effective as last season. Plus he’s coming off a torn ACL, and that has to have some affect on his game. But it will be interesting to see how it plays out.

        • josh

          I would also debate that JF is not our best new addition. Right now hes our backup behind a very underrated Hoyer not to mention we made a few additions that will make a strong impact starting day one. Im not denying JF’s potential but right now that’s all it is, is potential, hes not a starter. I would have Whitner as our biggest new addition based solely on his leadership and physicality that he will bring on day one. the front office already refers to him as the enforcer of this team and defense.

          • Maurice Barksdale

            You think Hoyer will beat out Manziel? I like Hoyer, but if it’s close then I think Manziel will be the starter. Hoyer will make a great backup, but I think Manziel’s backup status is just a formality for now. However, if Manziel doesn’t calm down with all the partying, he may just might take himself out of the running.