The wide receiver, who has teamed well with Odell Beckham Jr. this season, is currently the Browns’ leading receiver with 439 yards on 25 catches but no touchdowns to show for it. That could very well change when the Browns visit New England on Sunday.
With a ton of attention dedicated to defending OBJ, the Patriots will have to figure out a way to limit what Landry can do as well. The Browns also have Antonio Callaway and Rashard Higgins who have both shown an ability to catch passes and contribute in the receiving game as well.
But Landry, who shredded the Patriots while with Miami, is a different animal and one New England has never figured out how to defend.
Jarvis Landry Matchup vs Patriots
In eight career games against the Patriots, Landry has 569 receiving yards on 55 catches (10.35 yards per catch) and three touchdowns.
Averaging 71.1 yards receiving per game over a half season’s worth of games is no fluke. Considering he’s shared the field with a ton of talented receivers over his career, including Kenny Stills, Devante Parker, and Beckham both in college and this season, he has still managed to put up big numbers over his entire career.
Beckham will likely draw the attention of the top corner Stephon Gilmore, meaning Landry will be the pick of either Jonathan Jones or J.C. Jackson. While both Patriots corners have enjoyed strong seasons, they are vulnerable to allowing a big play and have shown that tendency at times this year.
Given the Patriots have employed a zero blitz defense this season, they are challenging opposing receivers to beat corners in single coverage downfield. Landry has both the speed and the catch range to do so against either of the Patriots’ second corners. Golden Tate did it back in Week 6 against Jonathan Jones, and Landry is a very similar player.
Should You Start Landry vs Patriots?
You would likely be taking a major risk starting Landry this week in fantasy, but it’s one that could work out depending on how the Patriots assign coverages to its defensive backs.
The Patriots haven’t allowed a touchdown pass this season when blitzing the quarterback and have 50 pass breakups as a team, but may have to tweak its gameplan defensively when it comes to planning for Landry. The type of receiver who could break off a deep route against tight coverage, New England may need to float a safety who could help cover either Beckham or Landry in downfield situations.
If Landry starts to get into a rhythm, it might be a way for Baker Mayfield to not only break out of his slump but to move downfield in a hurry against the Patriots defense. It is more likely, however, that the Patriots shut down the Browns’ passing attack for much of the game with consistent pressure and double coverage downfield.
So if you need production out of the WR2 position, go with another option besides Landry.