Continuing a very preliminary look at how the Cleveland Browns roster might shake out come September, with a comparison to last season's numbers after the final cutdown out of preseason.
Left to ponder: Probably two others.
Last year/this year: The Browns kept eight last year; they'll keep eight this year.
The top six are gimmes for a group that generally is considered the team's strength. The fact that Erving is the sixth lineman should be a step forward. Last season the sixth was Paul McQuistan, then Nick McDonald. Nothing against those players, but a first-round pick should at a minimum provide some quality depth, which gives the Browns a solid six.
Erving will begin camp at right guard, putting him in competition with John Greco, a hard-nosed and underrated guard. The Browns will give him a chance at several different spots. Erving will find his spot, line coach Andy Moeller said.
The seventh and eighth are anyone's guess, but I'm guessing the three competing for two spots will be Ryan Seymour, Vinston Painter and Michael Bowie. Seymour played guard and center for the Browns last season, and the team re-signed him soon after the season. Painter can play guard or tackle, and Bowie started eight games at right tackle for Seattle as a rookie in 2013.
I'm guessing Seymour and Painter wind up with the last two spots.
One interesting thought with this group: Could or would the Browns trade one of their starters not named Bitonio to a team that has an injury to gain an extra draft pick, provided Erving proves to be the real deal? I don't see it coming, but when one is in a position of strength it can make sense to make a deal like that.
Chances of that happening? Less than 10 percent. It's just worth considering.
They'll keep: Thomas, Bitonio, Mack, Greco, Schwartz, Erving, Seymour, Painter (8).