July 25, 2014

Wide receivers galore: Browns reportedly hot after Emmanuel Sanders

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How unhappy are the Browns with their wide receiver options outside of Josh Gordon? In addition to multiple inquiries regarding those in the slot, the front office in Berea is also reportedly hot after Pittsburgh Steelers burner Emmanuel Sanders.

CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora reports the Browns “will be in on” free agent Sanders as a Plan B to Andre Roberts. Cleveland was reportedly interested in Roberts as a complement to Gordon, but the 26-year-old agreed to terms with the Washington Redskins on a four-year, $16 million contract. The New England Patriots thought enough of Sanders last year to sign him to an offer sheet. In 2013, he hauled in 67 receptions for 740 yards and six touchdowns—all career highs.

Comparing Sanders to Greg Little and company, he had just two drops (out of 112 targets) in 2013 as compiled by ESPN Stats & Info—one of the lowest drop percentages in the league. He turns 27 on March 17.

It’s dangerous to extrapolate all of this interest into anything more than due diligence, but it would appear likely that—assuming the Browns address the wide receiver spot through free agency—the odds of players like Clemson’s Sammy Watkins or Texas A&M’s Mike Evans being acquired through the NFL Draft are quickly fading.

Image: Jim O’Connor-US PRESSWIRE

  • RGB

    “It’s dangerous to extrapolate all of this interest into anything more than due diligence, but it would appear unlikely that—assuming the Browns address the wide receiver spot through free agency—the odds of players like Clemson’s Sammy Watkins or Texas A&M’s Mike Evans being acquired through the NFL Draft are quickly fading.”

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  • mgbode

    I agree with RGB. These are WR3 type guys we are going after, so I don’t think it precludes us from obtaining a WR1/2 in the draft. In fact, I think that is still very necessary.

  • RGB

    I have a bad feeling about looking at all these WR’s.
    Apparently management didn’t get the Watkins memo.

  • woofersus

    Exactly what I was thinking. We need two new WR’s anyway, really.

  • richheddleson

    If the Browns sign Sanders for say 4 yrs/30 mil, the Steelers will get a 3rd rd comp pick next year, which will make up for the 3rd rounder they gave the Browns to draft Shamarko Thomas. Good deal for the Steelers.

  • richheddleson

    Good deal for the Steelers no matter who signs Sanders, even if the comp pick is a 5th rounder. Sanders did not live up to expectations, and would have been replaced by Marcus Wheaton this year anyway.

  • richheddleson

    Good deal for the Steelers no matter who signs Sanders, even if the comp pick is a 5th rounder. Sanders did not live up to expectations.

  • mgbode

    why would the Browns pay Sanders $7mil+ per year? if that is the going rate, then let someone else pay it.

  • dwhit110

    Agree, agree. Even if they’re not riding the Watkins train at #4, I’d be surprised in that scenario if we didn’t draft a WR at 26 or with our 2nd rounder. Odell Beckham Jr would be a nice parting gift if we go in a different direction at #4.

  • mgbode

    Sanders/Hawkins are slot WRs to replace Bess.

    Watkins/Evans/Lee/Beckham are outside WRs and will replace Little.

    If we were going after Decker/Tate, then you should be worried. We are not.

  • mgbode

    he is my favorite of the non-top3 WRs in this draft (and I think those 3 will be gone by #26).

  • RGB

    My bad feeling persists, nonetheless.

  • mgbode

    that’s called being a Browns’ fan.