Cleveland Browns: 3 late free agent options for 2018
By Randy Gurzi
J.J. Wilcox, SS
The man at strong safety is Jabrill Peppers. Or at least we hope so. The Browns previous regime drafted him at No. 25 overall in the first round after he split time as a linebacker and safety for the Michigan Wolverines.
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Coming into the NFL, there was a question about where he would play as he spent most his time at linebacker. Peppers even ran drills with that positional group during the NFL Scouting Combine.
Cleveland drafted him with the intention of playing him at safety, but they didn’t put him at the best spot. Peppers was sent deep as a centerfield type of safety, despite him having the traits of an in-the-box strong safety. They hope to get him into a better role in 2018 thanks to the addition of Damrious Randall, which should have a strong impact on his career.
The key word here is should. Peppers is still an unknown as a safety close to the line of scrimmage, so maybe the Browns could benefit from brining in some help. J.J. Wilcox could provide that help.
A former third-round pick of the Dallas Cowboys, Wilcox started last season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before being sent to the Pittsburgh Steelers. He’s a hard-hitting safety that can also come up with some big interceptions. He may take a bad angle from time-to-time, but he would be a beast on special teams at worst. At best, he could push Peppers.