At 0-4 with the 3-1 New England Patriots rolling into town with a highly-motivated Tom Brady under center again, another double-digit loss is all but certain.
If there has been one bright spot in what has become a quickly forgettable season for the Browns, has been the emergence of the former quarterback-turned-wide receiver, Terrelle Pryor.
Pryor, a native of Jeannette, PA—a town 21.5 miles east of Pittsburgh—was Rival.com’s top overall recruit in 2008, when he made the surprising decision to choose bitter border and conference rival Ohio State over his native Penn State, much to the dismay of many.
During his time in Columbus, he would help lead the Buckeyes to bowl wins over Oregon in the Rose Bowl and Arkansas in the Sugar Bowl—which would later be vacated due to the infamous Tattoogate scandal. After leaving Ohio State in utter disgrace, he would be the last draft pick—in the third round of the supplemental round—of the late Al Davis and the Oakland Raiders in 2011.
In what was a hit-and-miss time under center, Pryor would be coached by current Browns head coach Hue Jackson his rookie year in what would be a rocky two-year tenure as QB by the Bay.
After being cut by the Raiders in 2013, Pryor would bounce around to the Seattle Seahawks, Kansas City Chiefs, Cincinnati Bengals before converting to a full-time wide receiver in 2015.
After briefly being cut by the Browns and claimed off of waivers by them again later that year, Pryor would begin working in the off-season with notable standouts such as Randy Moss and Antonio Brown on the finer nuances of the position.
It wouldn’t take long to show the results of it.
Used in tandem with rookie quarterback Cody Kessler, Pryor completed 3-of-5 passes for 35 yards, rushed for 21 yards and a touchdown and caught eight passes for 144 yards in a 30-24 overtime loss to the Miami Dolphins.
Pryor also caught his first touchdown as a wide receiver on a nine-yard pass from Kessler in a 31-20 loss to the Washington Redskins. For the game, he caught five passes for 46 yards.
For someone who is still learning the position, the 6’4 220-pounder seems a natural at it already as he is in the top 25 in receiving yards (290) and receptions (19).
Thanks to the troubled Josh Gordon going back on the inactive/suspended list for reportedly another substance violation, and the current hand injury to rookie phenom Corey Coleman, the chance for Pryor to emerge as the man in Cleveland is there.
With Coleman out and Gordon did in Cleveland, Pryor has emerged as the team leader is yards receiving, catches and targets (39), and is second to Coleman in yards per catch (15.3), touchdowns (1) and yards per game with 72.5
For a team devoid of legit all-purpose home run threats such as the Browns, Pryor has the chance to be a special kind of player in Cleveland.
Likely to be used as a decoy and wildcat QB vs. the visiting Pats, if the Browns have any chance of winning a game this season, don’t be shocked if he isn’t the main reasons why.