Projected 2015 starters: Cleveland Browns


Around The NFL predicts the Week 1 starting lineups for all 32 teams, analyzing the potential impact of each rookie class. See every breakdown here.

Browns Projected Starters
  Offense Defense
  QB Josh McCown DE Desmond Bryant
  RB Isaiah Crowell NT Danny Shelton
  WR1 Dwayne Bowe DE Randy Starks
  WR2 Brian Hartline OLB Barkevious Mingo
  WR3 Andrew Hawkins ILB Karlos Dansby
  TE Rob Housler ILB Chris Kirksey
  LT Joe Thomas OLB Paul Kruger
  LG Joel Bitonio CB1 Joe Haden
  C Alex Mack CB2 Tramon Williams
  RG John Greco S Tashaun Gipson
  RT Cameron Erving S Donte Whitner

» Another year, another quarterback competition in Cleveland. Despite the heady praise heaped on a post-rehab Johnny Manziel, Josh McCown would need to crumble in training camp to lose his grip over the starting gig. We wouldn't be surprised to see Manziel start a rash of games next season, but McCown gives the Browns a safer option out of the gate.

» Danny Shelton will shift right into a starting role as the centerpiece of Cleveland's rebuilt defensive line. After the Browns were slaughtered against the run last season, the combination of Desmond Bryant, Shelton and Randy Starks form a strong starting trio ahead of John Hughes, Phil Taylor and Billy Winn. The team also loves Xavier Cooper, the third-round end Cleveland moved up to pick in the draft.

» With Josh Gordon shotgunned into the void, the wideout group has undergone a makeover. It's not sexy, but an aging Dwayne Bowe will start across from Brian Hartline with jitterbug Andrew Hawkins manning the slot. It's slim pickings behind them, but Taylor Gabriel made strides as an undrafted rookie last season. Travis Benjamin might be on the roster bubble if rookie Vince Mayle outplays him, especially after Benjamin lost his confidence as a return man in 2014.

» Will Barkevious Mingo finally make good on his first-round draft stock? If his shoulder fully heals, Mingo projects as a starter across from Paul Kruger at outside linebacker. Armonty Bryant showed flashes before his injury last season and will play both end and edge rusher once his knee is fully healthy. Rookie Nate Orchard could see major snaps.

» I'm taking a chance here, but I see Cameron Erving -- who worked at right tackle during rookie minicamp -- wresting away the job from up-and-down Mitchell Schwartz.

» Isaiah Crowell is penciled in as the starter, but Terrance West will round out this committee backfield. The team also loves Glenn Winston, while rookie Duke Johnson is bound to see plenty of third-down work as a shifty, natural-moving pass-catcher.

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