The Cleveland Browns must play Rashard Higgins as long as he is healthy enough to play. The Browns receiver has missed five games this season.
There is no getting around it. Baker Mayfield misses Rashard Higgins. The duo have yet to play an entire season together, but there is chemistry between the two that cannot be denied. The absence of Higgins is certainly much larger than people realize.
Rashard Higgins has only appeared in one game this season. The opening week loss to the Tennessee Titans. A game which saw Higgins catch two passes for 46 yards, both went for first downs. Higgins has since missed the past five games due a knee injury. There was the possibility that Higgins could have returned last week against Seattle, but a controversial and unpopular coaching decision saw Antonio Callaway get playing time instead.
While there are plenty of other factors at play, Baker Mayfield not having his safety blanket at receiver is an issue. There is something about a quarterback having his go-to guy at receiver. Yes, Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham Jr. are superior receivers to Higgins, nobody is denying that. This is just about personal comfort with a receiving target. Mayfield is much more comfortable with Rashard Higgins than he is with any other receiver.
The Cleveland Browns do not need Higgins to be a superstar. Cleveland just needs him to be there when Baker Mayfield needs him. As long as he is healthy, Rashard Higgins needs to be on the field and catching passes from Baker Mayfield. If Higgins is on the field, Baker Mayfield will be more comfortable and the Browns offense will be playing closer to the level that they are capable of.