Cleveland Browns desperately thin at defensive end after Adrian Clayborn release
By Mitch Zoloty
The Cleveland Browns have released backup defensive end, Adrian Clayborn.
In a kind of surprising move (not really), the Cleveland Browns have released Adrian Clayborn.
His release is not a testament to his play, as he performed well last year in his role, but as a result of the franchise trying to reallocate resources and stay in a healthy cap situation.
As reported by Jake Trotter, the franchise will save $3 million in cap space by releasing Clayborn.
This move leaves the Browns in a desperate situation at defensive end, as outside of Myles Garrett, the position is extremely unclear. The only other defensive end on the roster at the moment who is likely to be in the rotation this season is Porter Gustin. Expect the Browns to use the $3 million saved by cutting Clayborn to reinvest into a younger defensive end.
If the Browns do not bring back Olivier Vernon, there is $14 million in cap space ($11 million from Olivier Vernon, $3 million from Adrian Clayborn) from last year between the two players that now available for a new signing. I expect the Browns to try to bundle that into one high-end player and draft some backups to develop over the season.
For Adrian Clayborn, I would be surprised if this is the end of his career. While he is in the back end of his career, he proved last year that he still has some juice left in the tank, and he could very well find himself as a backup next season on a competitive team that needs defensive linemen.
I would not be surprised to see him go back to Tampa Bay, where his career began.