Cleveland Browns’ Edition of Guess the Stats
I flip it over to the defensive side of the ball and determine which guys will make their mark on the premier part of this team (at least on paper). Most of the Browns’ wins will be in large part set up by this unit – by holding teams to few points while giving the offense short fields to work with. Let’s see who the anticipated leaders are for the defense.
Most tackles – Go to Randy Starks
Analysis: The long-time veteran should get a fair amount of snaps this upcoming season – especially during running plays by the opposition. That will lead to many chances to stop rushers, which Starks will succeed in doing. I expected at least north of sixty tackles by the former Miami Dolphin – setting the tone for this new and improved run defense.
Most sacks – Go to Desmond Bryant
Analysis: The drafting of nose tackle Danny Shelton should help many people, primarily those on the end. He, Phil Taylor, and Ishmaa’ily Kitchen will make it difficult up the middle – forcing teams so employ additional blockers to occupy the nose tackles. The result is a guy like Desmond Bryant coming off the edge and taking down opposing quarterbacks (with little resistance). Look for at least five sacks by him and the leader in this category by the defensive line.
Most tackles – Go to Karlos Dansby
Analysis: This should come as no surprise, as Dansby has a tremendous ability to make stops up the middle. Going through a full season healthy (knock on wood), should elevate his production from last year. I could see him finish the year with upwards of 110 stops.
Most sacks – Go to Nate Orchard
Analysis: I will admit it, but I am taking the bait here. With Barkevious Mingo, Paul Kruger, and Armonty Bryant as solid options at getting the most sacks – I still decided on the rookie. He will have a breakout campaign, much like Kamerion Wimbley did a few years ago. The key will be how he responds to his early success (I envision ten sacks) and whether repetition can occur.
Most interceptions – Go to Craig Robertson
Analysis: A likely candidate for this honor, I see the inside linebacker coming away with at least three passes this fall intended for the other team. Fortunately for this defense, I suspect a few guys will have one or two – posing threats all over the place.
Most interceptions – Go to Tashaun Gipson
Analysis: Outperforming his teammates last year (prior to his injury), and wanting to prove his worth in a contract season – it all makes sense that Gipson will excel. The safety ought to come away with seven or so interceptions for this secondary, and I expect he will still contribute in other ways.
Longest interception return – Goes to Trammond Williams
Analysis: One gigantic mistake will occur by an opposing quarterback (who hopefully plays in the AFC North), and Williams will make him pay. I predict that the signal caller will be looking for that out route, only to see the former Packer jump it and return the ball over eighty yards en route to a Browns’ touchdown.
Most tackles – Go to Joe Haden
Analysis: Ever since joining the league, Haden has been viewed as a physical cornerback who is not afraid of contact. I have been very pleased by this part of his game – as he can make the difference between a fourth down and one versus a new set of downs for the opponent. Haden figures to have seventy tackles on the outside, which will lead all defensive backs.