The Browns made a big – though expected – splash in the early hours of the free agency season on Tuesday, as they signed former Ravens linebacker Paul Kruger to a five-year, $40 million contract.
Kruger (6-4, 285 pounds) had his best season as a pro in 2012, totaling 42 tackles and nine sacks, including two sacks of 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in the Super Bowl.
Though some question his efficiency against the run, Kruger is an ideal signing for the Browns as they undergo a switch to a base 3-4 defense. He has plenty of experience at both defensive end and linebacker and is a quality pass rusher. The Browns are sorely lacking in those areas, making Kruger an instant starter and a great depth pickup.
Cleveland is by no means finished with free agency, but the team got a key piece early. The defense is improved with the move, and that’s the most anyone could really want.