Cleveland Browns Coaching Camp 2021: WR Preview (Half 2)


In part 2 of our wide receiver preview for the Cleveland Browns, We look up KhaDarel Hodge, Anthony Schwartz, JoJo Natson, and Yes, ‘Marcus Bradley.

Photo by Nic Antaya / Getty Images

5. KhaDarel Hodge – Backup WR

Height: 6-2 | Weight: 205 pounds | Old: 26th
Experience: 4 years | University: A&M prairie view

Once put in a drawer as just an important contributor to special teams, KhaDarel Hodge His role as wide receiver grew in 2020. Hodge started the year as the team’s third receiver and proved to be reliable when needed. I can remember a few instances where at crucial moments he hauled in hard fangs to move the chains. Speaking of chains moving, he was the only receiver in the NFL who did this on every single one of his catches:

#Brown WR KhaDarel Hodge was the only WR in the NFL last season where 100% of his receptions resulted in a first down.

(H / T @CodySuek)

– Brad Stainbrook (@BrownsByBrad) July 22, 2021

It’s hard to believe that Hodge only had 11 catches for 180 yards that season – it seemed like he was a little more involved. One of the reasons he was there is because the team liked his blocking ability; although over time the other recipients in this department have performed well as well. Hodges playing time was derailed a little from injury, and when he came back the dynamics of players like Higgins and Peoples-Jones prevented him from reclaiming his role.

Hodge isn’t banned from getting on the list after creating the rookie this year Anthony Schwartz. I would still vote to keep Hodge, both as a depth and as his role on special teams.

Odds for the final list: 75%

Cleveland Browns off-season training

Photo by Nick Cammett / Getty Images

6. Anthony Schwartz – Rookie WR

Height: 6-0 | Weight: 185 lbs | Old: 20th
Experience: Beginner | University: Maroon

Anthony Schwartz was a third-round pick by the Browns and is considered the fastest receiver in the draft – and possibly one of the fastest in the entire NFL. When the Browns were designing Schwartz, it seemed clear to me that the choice wasn’t about the team replacing someone, but rather adding another dynamic to the Browns offensive. Schwartz can be used on go routes, end-arounds and screens. With Cleveland getting close to a full soccer team, they can afford niche tips, and the following clip shows the exact type of game that Schwartz is used in:

I’m curious to see how many of these games the Browns play during the training camp, which is open to fans rather than under lock and key. I think fans will see Schwartz’s speed as he tries to run downfield routes with all of the tricks saved for the day of the game.

Odds for the final list: 98%

Cleveland Browns off-season training

Photo by Nick Cammett / Getty Images

7. JoJo Natson – Backup WR

Height: 5-7 | Weight: 153 pounds | Old: 27
Experience: 5 years | University: Akron

He is back! Natson had 1 carry for 3 yards, 3 punt returns for 25 yards, and 1 kickoff return for 31 yards in the 3 games he played last year. A cruciate ligament tear in the third game ended his season. Prior to the injury, Natson was put on the offensive for a few games where he started moving as a distraction for the defense. I think that role goes to Schwartz now, and that Natson will try to win a roster seat solely as a kick / punt returner.

Natson appears to be recovering from his cruciate ligament tear, as seen in this clip from early June:

Last year special team coordinator Mike Priefer seemed genuinely in love with how hard Natson can be to deal with. with D’Ernest Johnson and Donovan Peoples-Jones Taking on the retrieval duties after Natson’s injury, I didn’t think Natson would be under contract again this off-season. But bringing him back changed my perception – I’m using him to get back on the list as a returnee, which the team could put on seven receivers. Are there too many?

Odds for the final list: 40%

Cleveland Browns versus New York Jets

Photo by Jim McIsaac / Getty Images

8. Yes’ Marcus Bradley – Backup WR

Height: 6-0 | Weight: 198 lbs | Old: 24
Experience: 1 year | University: Louisiana Lafayette

Yes, ‘Marcus Bradley signed with the Browns last April as an undrafted free agent and was on the training roster for most of the season. Then at week 16, when all of the Browns’ main recipients went down due to COVID-19, he was the “leader of the group” in terms of broad recipients. Against the Jets, Bradley had 5 catches for 60 yards. He showed some potential but we are now at the bottom of eighth place on the depth map. All I can do to Bradley with the Browns is the training team at best. He will hope to have a good camp to draw the attention of other teams in need of a young receiver.

Here is the scouting report that Dane Brugler had on Bradley in college:

Coming up as the “X” receiver, its production grew steadily from season to season, including 10 touchdowns in the last two seasons. Bradley has strong hands for turning irregular throws into consummations, and he won’t shy away from working in the middle of the field. While he drives efficient routes and surprises with some shake after the catch, he doesn’t accelerate past defenders as he has no bursts in his releases or out of his breaks. Overall, Bradley is only average size, speed, and strength and could struggle to spot NFL-level cornerbacks, but his reliable ball skills and focus give him a legitimate chance of building a professional squad.

Odds for the final list: <5%

opinion poll

Beckham, Landry, Higgins, and Peoples-Jones all make up the list. If Cleveland can only keep two more recipients, who should they keep?

  • 78%

    KhaDarel Hodge, Anthony Schwartz

    (22 votes)

  • 0%

    KhaDarel Hodge, JoJo Natson

    (0 votes)

  • 0%

    KhaDarel Hodge, Ja’Marcus Bradley

    (0 votes)

  • 21%

    Anthony Schwartz, JoJo Natson

    (6 votes)

  • 0%

    Anthony Schwartz, Ja’Marcus Bradley

    (0 votes)

  • 0%

    JoJo Natson, Ja’Marcus Bradley

    (0 votes)

28 votes in total

Choose now