Shortly after the Cleveland Browns landed Tyrod Taylor as the new starting quarterback, and jettisoned DeShone Kizer, we addressed the fantasy outlook of the former Buffalo Bills starter.
Over the past several months, the Browns saw star left tackle Joe Thomas retire and a wholesale revamping of the offense. The backfield added veteran Carlos Hyde and rookie Nick Chubb, while the aerial attack lured prized free agent Jarvis Landry. Darren Fells will add depth to the tight end position, and promising rookie wideout Antonio Callaway was added via the draft. Corey Coleman hasn’t as much pressure to perform, and Josh Gordon enters the year on the straight and narrow.
Taylor would be in a wonderful situation if not for the No. 1 overall selection of quarterback Baker Mayfield. The Oklahoma star looms large over Taylor, and it is only a matter of time before he makes his way onto the field. When a team wins a mere game in its past 32 attempts, stability should be more important than upside. We know exactly what to expect from Taylor after three years as a full-time starter, but the intrigue of “what could be” with Mayfield could force him into the lineup before he’s ready.
Head coach Hue Jackson recently admitted the played Kizer too soon last year. This situation should play out one of two ways: He learned his lesson and sticks with Taylor, perhaps even throughout the year, or Jackson cannot help himself and turns to Mayfield earlier than necessary.
It appears the only way the latter happens is if the rookie stands out during the summer and amplifies the intrigue by way of impressive practices. Taylor is safe, cautious and now has the best weapons of his career. Can he put it all together and stave off the competition?
Fantasy football outlook
Fantasy owners should already know what he is as an option, though. At his best, we’re talking about a passer with career highs of 20 passing touchdowns, 24 total scores, and no more than 3,035 aerial yards in any given season. Could he be more productive? Sure, it’s possible. How much more is the debate, and it’s likely settled with a cap of being a fringe starter some weeks.
There isn’t anywhere near the potential for more now that Mayfield is in the fold. Taylor is barely draftable, in the event you are one of the few people who do not expect to see Mayfield play meaningful football in 2018. Otherwise, he is a QB3 selection on him in hopes the Browns red-shirt Mayfield. Gamers have chosen Taylor in the 15th round, on average, in the past month of surveyed mock drafts.