- Pat McManamon, ESPN Staff Writer
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Examining the Cleveland Browns' roster:
Hoyer and Manziel both got extensive looks in the first scrimmage. Hoyer has been consistent and sound, but Manziel showed in the scrimmage how he can make plays with his feet. The team gave Connor Shaw a look in the scrimmage, but he had two turnovers turn into touchdowns.
Running backs (3)
Tate and West are givens. Dion Lewis was a favorite of the team a year ago, but that was a year ago. Crowell ran some with the first team in the scrimmage, and it might be tough to bring him back to the practice squad if he's released.
By taking a quick look at Chris Pressley in the offseason and then releasing him, the Browns showed they don’t want a road grader at the position. By moving Gray there later, they confirmed that they want their fullback to be more active. Ogbonnaya is the kind of guy teams like and need. Smart, plays anywhere and contributes on special teams.
Wide receivers (5)
Yes, I was wrong to think Benjamin might not make it. He's been getting serious practice reps in different spots. Count him in. We’ll assume that Josh Gordon is suspended. If he’s not, add him and remove Johnson. But don't sleep on Willie Snead, an undrafted free agent who has done some good things; he could force his way into the mix.
Tight ends (3)
Gray moved to fullback during the offseason, so we’ll assume he stays there. The Browns are well fortified with the three tight ends they have.
Offensive linemen (9)
I clearly read the Chris Faulk situation wrong. He's already been released. Wallace has been impressive playing behind Thomas. Jason Pinkston's sudden absence is concerning. Pinkston had issues with blood clots earlier in his career, but it's not known if this is a repeat. The right guard competition between Gilkey and Greco is turning interesting.
Defensive linemen (7)
A deep group with a lot of talent. Coaches should be able to keep fresh linemen on the field and keep active linemen playing.
Mingo has played consistently well. Martin has flashed in some practices. Sheard is a linebacker who will also play with his hand down. A sixth receiver would mean the Browns keep just seven linebackers.
The most interesting competition remains between Skrine and Gilbert to see who starts opposite Haden. Gilbert has come on.
The Browns clearly were concerned about safety depth, so they signed 30-something Leonhard. That bumps Johnson Bademosi, an aggressive player who has made some mistakes.
No need to change anything here from last season, as all were strong and dependable contributors.