Adkins: Down the Depth Chart

Hard decisions are coming, and Lane Adkins lays out how he would break it down. Optimism reigns in the realm of the Cleveland Browns, but weaknesses exist on the roster. The decisions being made this month will resonate throughout the season...

Looking down the depth chart and offering some takes on how position battles are playing out...

THE WIDE RECEIVER CORPS: The WR position is slowly beginning to come to form. Behind Braylon Edwards and Donte Stallworth, it's a crap-shoot. Right now, I'd take Travis Wilson, Steve Sanders and Paul Hubbard and call it a day. The key reason for keeping Hubbard over Steptoe is that the former probably doesn't clear waivers. This position may become further clouded depending on how the team classifies KR/WR Josh Cribbs, as well if the team decides to keep four TE's. Steptoe has been solid and his ability as the backup in the return game is quite intriguing.

ON THE LINE: Youngsters Nathan Bennett and Derrick Morse have displayed ability, but I still like the thought of having experienced vets such as Lennie Friedman, Seth McKinney and Ryan Tucker on my side. The final line spot could come down to Isaac Sowells and rookie James Lee. Lee is proving he can play. He needs seasoning, but he can play. The rookie just may make it, as he has displayed better ability and quality, than say Cliff Louis. (Editor's note: Louis was released as this article went to press).

NO SAFETY NET: Thinking about the depth at safety makes me cringe. If Sean Jones or Brodney Pool were to go down, things would be somewhat scary. Mike Adams is next up and can play, but after him.... I keep looking at which CB's could slide over to safety, maybe Jereme Perry and that's about it. Something tells me we'll see a new face added here. (Since this writing, the team added DB's Brandon Mitchell and Travis Key, both are players the team expressed interest in at an earlier time.)

THE THIN ORANGE LINE: I like the quality and size along the defensive line, but following the first five guys (Smith, Smith, Rogers, Williams and Leonard), I am concerned. DE Chase Pittman has shown the most out of a young group that also includes Melila Purcell, Brian Schaefering and Ahtyba Rubin. The catch at this position is that Rubin probably doesn't clear waivers and the Browns like the young man. Rubin has been catching the eye of this writer and the Browns staff over the past week and may be settling in, which is not uncommon for a rookie.

CORNERING THE MARKET: The Ty Law watch has been magnified due to the big plays given up by the backup defensive backs in the pre-season opener. Granted, after Eric Wright and Brandon McDonald on the depth chart, we are venturing into unchartered waters. Veteran Terry Cousin is not effective out on an island and must cover the slot to be effective. After Cousin, it is "Inexperience Central". Much like the safety spot, something tells me a new face will be added at some point.

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