The Browns have already made two of the most significant moves this offseason, trading for Deshaun Watson and Amari Cooper. That has led to optimism they can contend in the AFC as they hoped – but failed – to do last year. One of the biggest remaining weaknesses on the roster, though, is at the edge rusher position.
It comes as no surprise, then, that CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora writes that Cleveland is looking to add to their edge group. Specifically, he states that the Browns “want to beef up the pass rush”, adding that he “figure[s] they will”. Finding a long-term compliment to Myles Garrett has been an ongoing process in recent years.
The latest attempt to do so, of course, was the signing of Jadeveon Clowney. Brought in on a one-year deal, he enjoyed a far more productive season than the one he spent the year prior in Tennessee. In 14 games, the former No. 1 pick registered nine sacks and a pair of forced fumbles. As a result, the team has left the door open to a return.
If Clowney isn’t brought back, Cleveland could turn to other veterans such as Trey Flowers, Jason Pierre-Paul and Melvin Ingram in free agency. As a result of the Watson trade, their top pick in this month’s draft is 44th overall; while intriguing edge options will still be available at that point, those likeliest to make an immediate impact will be off the board by that point.
The Browns still rank near the top of the league in terms of cap space, so a notable move at the position remains a distinct possibility. Regardless of how it is made, any addition could help maintain their defense’s top-ten ranking in sacks from last season, and relatively strong overall performance.