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Reasons Browns Fans Should Be Optimistic About 2024

Since the return of the team in 1999, Browns fans have had a rollercoaster ride of emotions. Bad coaches, bad general managers and bad teams have led to a series of frustrating seasons. When the Browns had a good season, they followed it with bad season. Not since the mid to late eighties have the Browns had consecutive winning seasons and haven’t won their division since 1989 when it was known as the AFC Central. In 2023, the Browns won eleven games and made the playoffs for the second time in four years even though they started four different quarterbacks. They beat the number one teams at the time in the NFC (San Fransico) and AFC (Baltimore). Yet, betting services project Cleveland to have 8.5 wins. So why be optimistic about 2024?

Recently both GM Andrew Berry and two-time coach of the year Kevin Stefanski got contract extensions. This ends the cycle of firing the coach one year then firing the general manager the next year. When you look at the two most successful teams in the AFC North, Pittsburg and Baltimore, they have stability. Stability in their head coaches and their front offices. As I pointed out earlier, the Browns won eleven games last year because to the play calling of Stefanski and the player acquisitions by Berry. This year, with the help of offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey, the play calling will be better suited for number one quarterback Deshaun Watson. It will be designed to play to his strengths. As for Andrew Berry, he’s assembled an extremely talented roster and shown he can find talent anywhere. No one thought the Joe Flacco signing would turn out the way it did.

Speaking of Watson, the uncertainty of his health is the major reason why people are skeptical about the 2024 Browns. However, during minicamp, he threw the ball very well and showed off his arm strength by throwing deep several times. In an interview with The Insiders, Berry indicated Watson was ahead of schedule in his rehab. It is fully anticipated Watson will be ready to go day one of training camp. After Watson, the health of running back Nick Chubb could also be a reason for skepticism even though Berry has built a versatile running back room to prepare for a lengthy Chubb absence, Jerome Ford, Nyheim Hines and D’Onta Foreman. No one truly knows if Chubb will be ready for the start of the season, but in an interview with, Chubb said “I’m doing everything I can at this point and I’m right where I want to be,” added Chubb. “And when that time happens, when I feel great, I’ll be on the field.”  It’s still speculated Chubb will be placed on the PUP list and return after four weeks. A return by week six would be extraordinary and just what the Browns would need, but knowing Nick Chubb, he’ll do everything in his power to be ready week one.

On defense, the Browns return most of the talent that made them one of the best defenses in the league. They have improved the defensive line and the linebacker position. The one area where the defense struggled was in the redzone, worst in the league giving up a staggering 72% points scored by the opposition. Defense coordinator Jim Schwartz made it clear during OTA’s changes will be made. During minicamp, the Browns defense was aggressive and successful in redzone drills.

With five weeks until the start of training camp in West Virginia, it appears the Browns are ready to improve on 2023.


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