The 2016 Cleveland Browns are playing for the future and that is okay. We know they are playing for 2017 and beyond because all 14 draft picks made the 53 man roster. Also the Browns let go of veteran linebacker Paul Kruger and traded former first round picks Justin Gilbert and Barkevious Mingo. But with that being said the 2016 season isn't a throw away season. This year we will see if guys like Danny Shelton, Cam Erving, Nate Orchard, Corey Coleman, and Terrelle Pryor are the future for this team. If the Browns go 3-13 its most likely for the best. It means that Robert Griffin III struggled and the Browns need to draft their franchise QB next year. But that's April talk.
Previewing this season is difficult because there are so many uncertainties. RGIII and receiver Josh Gordon hasn't played in a regular season game since 2014. Terrelle Pryor and Corey Coleman, the Browns' Starting wideouts, have a combined one career catch. Cam Erving is going to finally start and play center, the position he was drafted in the first round to play. And I didn't even mention all the rookie and second year players on the defense.
Johnson is great catching the ball out of the backfield and he is really good running the ball (who is Miami of Florida's all time leading rusher). Johnson might be the most complete back for the Browns and I expect him to get most of the carries by the end of this year.
Terrelle Pryor is entering this season with a lot of hopeful expectations. He shown the ability to get open down the field. Pryor is an obvious weapon in the red zone and as a down field threat but he's shown a willingness to block down field. Pryor looks like a solid NFL receiver who has a ton of potential. Last point on Pryor is that Hue Jackson likes to keep defenses honest and is willing to call some trick plays. I expect Pryor to throw for at least one touchdown and to have a handful of carries.
Right tackle is an interesting spot. As of right now Austin Pasztor is the starter, but there is a high chance Shon Coleman or Spencer Drango takes over at some point. Pasztor is an average lineman who doesn't have much potential so he seems to be a place holder for one of the rookies eventually. Also not to mention Alvin Bailey who was a starter for the Seattle Seahawks. There might be a chance Bailey plays if Erving or one of the guards go down.
We know what we are going to get with future Hall of Famer Joe Thomas and the two starting guards Joel Bitonio and John Greco.
The Browns are going to go 4-12. Don't ask what games they are going to win because I have no idea. But I know that somehow, someway Hue Jackson will get this team to four wins. RGIII will have a solid year which means the Browns will have a decision to make about the QB position. Again we have to remember that is like a tryout year. Young guys will make dumb mistakes but if we can see improvement from game one to game 16 its going to be a successful year.