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CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 09: Tyrod Taylor #5 of the Cleveland Browns looks to pass the ball during the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at FirstEnergy Stadium on September 9, 2018 in Cleveland, Ohio. The game ended in a 21-21 tie. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns released wide receiver Josh Gordon Saturday, which could have a significant impact on the rest of the offense from a fantasy perspective.

While quarterback Tyrod Taylor will have one less weapon to throw to, wide receiver Rashard Higgins should see more opportunities behind No. 1 wideout Jarvis Landry.

On the heels of Gordon’s surprising release, here is a rundown of what it means for the fantasy value of both Taylor and Higgins.

Tyrod Taylor

Taylor wasn’t viewed as much more than a fantasy backup entering the 2018 season, and his performance against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 1 likely didn’t do much to change that.

While he rushed for 77 yards and a touchdown, he completed just 37.5 percent of his passes for 197 yards, one touchdown and one pick.

His one touchdown toss was a 17-yard strike to Gordon, and there is no question that Gordon’s release will leave him without a major red-zone threat.

Taylor clearly favored Landry ahead of anyone else in Week 1, as he targeted him 15 times, completing seven of them for 106 yards.

The veteran signal-caller will likely lock in even more on Landry for the remainder of the season, and that may not necessarily be a bad thing.

Most of Taylor’s value comes from his rushing ability, and since that is the case with or without Gordon, Taylor should still be viewed as a QB2 with a high floor moving forward.

Rashard Higgins

The biggest beneficiary of Gordon’s release from a fantasy perspective is Higgins, who stands to become Cleveland’s No. 2 wideout.

Higgins and Antonio Callaway were in a battle for that spot entering the season, but the Week 1 numbers suggest that Higgins came out on top.

According to Miguel Chapeton of RotoUnderworld, Higgins played 61 percent of the team’s offensive snaps in Week 1, while Callaway played in just 17 percent:

Gordon played 78 percent of the snaps, which means there will be plenty of snaps to go around.

Callaway should see a significant increase in playing time, but Higgins figures to be on the field the vast majority of the time.

Raymond Summerlin of Rotoworld is among those who expect Higgins to be Taylor’s No. 2 target:

Higgins was not worthy of a roster spot prior to Gordon’s release, and he may still be better off left on the waiver wire unless you’re in the deepest of leagues.

He was targeted three times in Week 1 and finished with just one catch for 38 yards.

With Gordon missing most of last season and Landry not in the fold, Higgins registered 27 receptions for 312 yards and two scores.

Cleveland probably won’t have a high-volume passing offense since Taylor runs often, and the Browns boast a strong running back stable of Carlos Hyde, Nick Chubb and Duke Johnson Jr.

Until Higgins shows that he is a quality NFL receiver, he is little more than a bench option at best in fantasy.

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