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Which AFC North team has the best skill position players?

Is Andy Dalton in a better situation than the rest of the AFC North quarterbacks?

NFL: Cleveland Browns at Cincinnati Bengals Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

How easy does each AFC North quarterback have it? That’s what we are here to figure out today. What will be looked at is simple: Who has the best starting offensive players not including the offensive line or quarterback. The AFC North as a whole has a very nice set of skill position players, which made it hard to really separate one team from the others. None of these teams are lacking at the skill positions, but here is how we’d rank them. Be sure to offer your version of the ranking in the comments section below!

4) Baltimore Ravens

You would be surprised at how close the Ravens and Browns skill positions rank. The amount of unknown really hurts the Ravens in my eyes though. Sure they have Alex Collins who rushed for just less than 1,000 yards while only starting 12 games, but that seems to be the last remaining piece from the Ravens’ offense last season.

That isn’t necessarily a bad thing as the Ravens had one of the worst passing attacks in the NFL last season. Are Michael Crabtree and Willie Snead going to be better than Jeremy Maclin and Mike Wallace? Possibly, but considering the Ravens had the fourth fewest passing yards last season it is hard to see this new group as that much of improvement.

Where the Ravens should see improvement is at the tight end position where they drafted first round pick Hayden Hurst and third round pick Mark Andrews. Both should provide a boost, but as rookies it is hard to really know how big of a role those players will have.

The Ravens have a solid looking group of players, but the unknown and poor track record doesn’t help them and is why they rank last in the division heading into 2018.

3) Cleveland Browns

This is a huge risk, but if Josh Gordon stays on the field he could have a really good year. He is more talented than any receiver the Ravens have on their roster by a long shot. The team also has Jarvis Landry and Corey Coleman. Landry is a great underneath possession receiver who should be very productive next season. Many will point to his low yards per catch average, but with guys like Gordon and Coleman around him, Landry doesn’t need to make big plays.

The real thing that sets the Brown apart from the Ravens is the combination of Duke Johnson Jr. and Carlos Hyde. Neither one is necessarily better than Collins, but as a backfield they’re more well rounded. Did you know Johnson caught 74 passes last season?

David Njoku should be taking a step forward in the offense this season as well. You could see his potential as a matchup nightmare last season, and with another season under his belt, he should be in line for a productive season.

2) Cincinnati Bengals

What puts the Bengals above the Browns and Ravens is easy. It is one A.J. Green. He is consistently one of the best receivers in the NFL and is constantly taking up most of opposing teams’ defensive attention. The other thing keeping them above these two teams is the possibility of Tyler Eifert. The only caveat I have in this list is if you take Eifert away I’d drop the Bengals to three in a heart beat. When healthy, Eifert is an absolute monster offensively. After taking most of last season to get caught up on surgeries, we can only hope that means we can get a full season out of him again. Unfortunately, Marvin Lewis isn’t ready to say Eifert will be healthy for training camp.

The running backs should be more highly regarded after next season. Giovani Bernard proved he still has it at the end of last season, and an improved offensive line should do wonders for Joe Mixon entering his second season.

John Ross being a huge unknown going into this season really keeps the Bengals from even being considered in as good of a situation as the Steelers though. That could easily change with good years from Ross and Mixon.

1) Pittsburgh Steelers

It really pains me to say that the Steelers have the best skill position players of any AFC North team. It is just incredibly hard to compete with guys like Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell who are at the top of their respective positions.

The Steelers also have JuJu Smith-Schuster who had an incredible rookie season when he wasn’t busy taking cheap shots. He almost reached 1,000 yards receiving with less than 60 catches.

The real wild card of this offense will be tight end Vance McDonald. He had a quiet regular season, but he caught 10 passes against the Jaguars during Pittsburgh’s playoff loss last season. If he gets going alongside these other player-makers, that could spell trouble for the rest of the NFL.