2. Porter Gustin, EDGE
Sunday’s live scrimmage was another great example of the camp that Porter Gustin has been having. Undrafted last season out of USC, Gustin had quite the resume coming into the NFL. In 34 career games with the Trojans, he had 21.5 sacks and 33 tackles for a loss. The problem was, he missed a ton of time late in his career.
Gustin played in just four games as a junior, but still showed out as he had 16 tackles and three sacks in those games. He followed that up with 28 tackles and 7.5 sacks — while suiting up for just six games as a senior.
Those injuries — which included a broken ankle as well as tears to his biceps and meniscus — were his biggest red flags and attributed to him going undrafted. He did end up landing with the right team though as injuries and suspensions (as well as John Dorsey trading away key depth pieces) led to Gustin seeing the field for the Browns during his rookie campaign.
He appeared in six games and had 13 tackles and one sack. So far this season, he’s proving he’s ready for more as Gustin has been on the field often while Myles Garrett has missed time with a hamstring injury. He’s been stepping up in practices but then in the live scrimmage, he made his mark even more as he solidified himself as the top option for the fourth defensive end spot behind Garrett, Olivier Vernon, and Adrian Clayborn.
The most impressive moment for Gustin was when he burst past left tackle Jeedrick Wills for what would have been an easy sack on quarterback Baker Mayfield. It’s clear right now that he’s surpassed Chad Thomas, a former third-round pick, thanks to his impressive camp.