Originally Posted by Posterize246
Alex Mack- 24
Joe Thomas- 25
D'Qwell Jackson- 26
Joe Haden- 21
You are missing Eric Wright
. He was one of the better cornerbacks in the league last year and that was with a weak core of safeties behind him and no pass rush to help him out. He is really one of the best young CBs in the NFL. He is also just 25.
About the o-line...
Along with Mack and Thomas, rookie third-rounder Shawn Lauvao
has looked spectacular thus far as the starting right tackle. He is only 22. The front office has done a terrific job in making the focal point of the team its front five and I really think that the Browns will have undoubtedly the best offensive line in the AFC North this year and one of the best lines in the NFL. The left side was already rock solid last year... Trading for Tony Pashos and drafting Lauvao has solidified the entire unit.
Look for Jerome Harrison and rookie Montario Hardesty
(another potential key young piece) to have a big year.
However, if I were to give you one name of a guy that I think could not only be an absolute star in this league but an immediate impact player, it is rookie free safety T.J. Ward
out of Oregon. A lot of the so-called experts were scratching their heads when we took Ward early in the second round.
During my three-day attendance at training camp, he was far and away the most impressive player. Then, in our first preseason game against Green Bay (he has already earned the starting FS spot), he was literally all over the field. He led the team in tackles and, usually, that is a bad thing (a safety leading the team in tackles), but not in this case. He is like a missile... Hitting RBs for losses, blowing up WR screens with blurring speed. He made the highlight of the night by body slamming Donald Driver for a loss on a little hot read... He even made two spectacular tackles on special teams. His style is very reminiscent of Troy Polamalu.
Ward is FOR REAL. I like what I see out of Haden, too, and I think that he could be an excellent physical corner in the NFL, but Ward has completely out-shined him in the secondary so far. Literally everyone in Cleveland is talking about Ward.
...and he is only 23.
A few other young players that could help turn this team and franchise completely around....
Matt Roth LB
- We picked him up off of waivers last year after Miami inexplicably released the former second-round pick out of Iowa halfway through the season. I remember watching him in college and thinking how great of a professional prospect I thought that he would be, so the fact that he landed in our laps for nothing was unreal. He made an immediate impact and he literally became probably the best LB on the team the moment he stepped on the field. He's got the size at 6-foot-4, 275 pounds, the athleticism, and the intensity to be the leader of our linebacking corps. I'm still wondering what in the hell the Big Tuna was thinking by letting this guy go. He is 27.
Brian Robiskie WR
- Has shown massive improvement after a disappointing rookie season. He has had an excellent training camp and he had several catches against GB's first-team defense last week including a 25-yard touchdown catch. It seems like things have finally clicked. He is just 22.
Evan Moore TE
- In his second year out of Stanford, Moore has already shown that he is probably going to be Delhomme's favorite target. At 6-foot-6, he is a big target, but also very athletic. He also had a TD catch against GB's first team. He actually reminds me a lot of Winslow without the off-the-field nonsense and injuries. He will learn under Ben Watson and he has the chance to be a special player. He is just 25.
Lawrence Vickers FB
- Was arguably the best blocking fullback in the NFL during the second half of the season last year. He is a big reason why Harrison was putting up those insane numbers in the last four games. He is 27.
Marcus Benard LB
- This will be his second year and he showed last season that he is probably our best blitzing outside linebacker. He just flat-out knows how to get to the quarterback and he turns the corner very quickly. He is 25.
All told, there is a lot to be excited about in Cleveland. We have a lot of young, talented players and I have trust that Holmgren and Heckert will continue to add to it.