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Browns fantasy focus

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Recent posts by Mike Wilkening

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Posted Aug. 02, 2011 @ 2:26 p.m. ET
By Mike Wilkening

As you prepare for your fantasy drafts, here's a closer look at the Browns' skill-position players. Players are ranked in order of when they should be considered. Not every player on this list figures to be drafted, especially in 10- or 12-team formats, but in bigger leagues, especially those featuring a few Browns fans, who's to say who will come off the board in the final rounds?

Here's our list. Rankings, unless otherwise noted, are the player's positional rank on PFW's latest draft board:

RB Peyton Hillis (No. 14 / No. 29 overall) — After racking up 1,177 yards and 11 rushing TDs and 477 receiving yards and two scores last season, Hillis — such a difference-making waiver claim for so many in 2010 — will be drafted as no worse than a No. 2 back in the vast majority of formats this season. Hillis could lose some touches to backup Montario Hardesty, but he still figures to get the lion's share of the work, and his pass-catching ability will help him fit well in Pat Shurmur's West Coast offense.

RB Montario Hardesty (No. 49 / No. 141 overall) — Hardesty missed the 2010 season with a torn ACL. If healthy, he likely will be Hillis' top backup and could be worth a late-round pick to owners betting big on Hillis.

RB Brandon Jackson (No. 58) — Jackson projects as a reserve in Cleveland. His biggest contribution could come on passing downs. Hardesty seems the slightly better pick because he would be more likely to get goal-line work if Hillis were out of the linuep.

QB Colt McCoy (No. 22)  McCoy might be a nice late-round sleeper pick. The Browns will throw more, and their schedule is favorable. McCoy figures as a No. 3 QB in 10-team formats but could be selected as a backup in bigger leagues.

TE Benjamin Watson (No. 21)  No Browns pass catcher was targeted more or racked up more catches and receiving yards than Watson did a season ago, but it wouldn't be shocking if he went undrafted in smaller leagues that don't require owners to draft multiple tight ends. Such is the depth at tight end this season. Nonetheless, Watson, who caught 68-761-3 in 2010, is a solid, safe late-round pick.

WR Greg Little (No. 67)  Little could be the first Browns wideout picked in bigger leagues if he shows promise in training camp. However, he didn't play in 2010 after being ruled ineligible for accepting gifts from an agent, and rookie wide receivers sometimes struggle.

WR Mohamed Massaquoi (No. 77)  He has flashed playmaking ability in each of his first two NFL seasons, but he hasn't consistently produced like an every-week fantasy starter. If you think the wideouts will be helped by the new passing game, perhaps he merits a flier.

WR Brian Robiskie (No. 98)  Robiskie caught TD passes in each of the final three games of the 2010 season, perhaps a sign the 2009 second-round pick has begun to put it together. He lacks speed but has good size and fits the mold of a West Coast receiver.

WR Joshua Cribbs  The special-teams star only merits consideration if he earns a regular role on offense.

TE Evan Moore (No. 37)  The former wideout has good speed and might be a good pickup if Watson were to ever leave the lineup.

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