The Cleveland Browns need a pass rusher opposite Myles Garrett, but did they nearly have their guy in former Raven and Packer Za’Darius Smith?
Myles Garrett is still set to be the starter on one side of the Cleveland Browns defensive line, but the position across from him is still open.
In 2021, Jadeveon Clowney occupied the role and while the front office reportedly wants him back, things have been quiet on that front. But that doesn’t mean the Browns are sitting idly by and waiting for him to make a decision.
As Clowney decides his future, Cleveland went out and traded for Chase Winovich who could fill a rotational role for them. They were also rumored to be close to landing former Baltimore Ravens and Green Bay Packers pass rusher Za’Darius Smith in free agency
According to the rumor, Smith was told the Browns wanted to figure out their quarterback situation first. In the end, the edge rusher and his camp didn’t want to wait as they signed on with the Minnesota Vikings.
Will the Cleveland Browns keep looking?
With Clowney still unsigned and Smith in Minnesota, will the Browns still be players in free agency? While we don’t know exactly what Andrew Berry is thinking, it’s safe to assume he’s looking at the players out there and wondering if it’s worth making another move in free agency.
Right now, there are limited options including Jason Pierre-Paul, Jerry Hughes, Melvin Ingram, and Benson Mayowa. While a couple of those names are recognizable, they’re also on the wrong side of 30.
Whether or not the Browns do pursue one of those names, the fact remains that defensive end is a major need and if Clowney doesn’t return, it could very well be the position they target at pick No. 44 in the upcoming NFL Draft.