John Dorsey is gone, but many of his undrafted rookies and reclaimed vets remain with the Cleveland Browns
The Cleveland Browns have been left a rich legacy from the two-year tenure of John Dorsey, which includes a group of undrafted rookies and recycled veterans. Although highly paid drafted players and free agents get the most attention, all NFL teams need to have these blue-collar players come through for them. This is where the front office and scouts really earn their pay, and where the Browns have often flopped over the years.
You can say what you want about John Dorsey, but he had a good eye for talent. It wasn’t just Baker Mayfield and Nick Chubb. Dorsey presided over the 2018 and 2019 offseasons, and many of his guys are still contributors to the team.
I suggest that if you look over the rosters of NFL teams, you will find that the undrafted players generally outperform the players drafted in rounds five, six and seven. The reason is that teams bring in 30 or so undrafted players to summer camp continue the evaluation process during the season, hiring and firing players on a weekly basis.
That process, though nerve-wracking for the players, allows teams to really find out which ones are good enough to play in the NFL. With the late-round draft picks, they generally stay on the team for a full year.
Veterans who are near the minimum salary are who were cut by another team are pretty much equivalent to an undrafted player, since the 90-player roster can be filled with either type of player.
Dorsey generally did a good job finding talent, though he did not come away with the Cleveland answer to James Harrison, the Steeler’s All-Pro who sent undrafted out of college. Still there are approximately 18 players who are trying to make the roster for the 2020 season. Not all will make it, of course, but several of these players may have key roles.