The Cleveland Browns are reeling with players dropping like flies. To reach their ceiling, they need these players to get healthy.
Things aren’t looking quite as favorable for the Cleveland Browns as they did coming into the season. Not only did they get blown out by the Cardinals in Week 6 to take their second straight loss but the injuries just keep piling up for the franchise that is trying to build sustained success.
With the entire AFC North gauntlet still awaiting them on the 2021 schedule, the Browns are sitting at 3-3 and, if they want to meet preseason expectations of making the playoffs and going on a run in the postseason, they need to get healthy.
In partciular, Cleveland needs to get these three players healthy and on the field if they’re going to bounce back from a subpar start to the year.
3. Baker Mayfield, QB
It was reported leading up to Sunday’s game that quarterback Baker Mayfield is dealing with a torn labrum this season. Against the Cardinals, that injury was clearly aggravated as he was driven into the ground by J.J. Watt and was slowly taken off the field and into the blue medical tent. He returned to the game but was removed when the loss was all but guaranteed and was seen in a sling after the game.
Mayfield has endured quite a bit of scrutiny from Browns and NFL fans alike this season, some warranted and some not. But it’s becoming clear that the former Heisman Trophy winner is just not 100 percent right now and needs to do something to try and get closer to that point.
With Cleveland facing a short week by playing on Thursday Night Football in Week 7, you have to wonder if it would be in the best long-term interest of the Browns for the team to just rest Mayfield and let veteran backup Case Keenum get the start for at least a game if not more.
While Mayfield not be a perfect quarterback, he’s every bit good enough when the roster is at full strength to take Cleveland deep into the playoffs and possibly win a Super Bowl. And while his shoulder injury won’t fully heal without surgery, he could be a much more consistent and better performer if he’s given time to rest it.