3 holes the Cleveland Browns won’t be able to fill before 2023 season

Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers
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It was another eventful weekend for the Cleveland Browns, as we found out on Friday evening that general manager Andrew Berry had struck yet another trade with the Minnesota Vikings that brought the three-time pro bowler, Za’Darius Smith to Cleveland. 

Berry loaded up at defensive tackle early in free agency and via the draft, but there was still a big question mark at defensive end. The Browns GM previously signed Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, but there are still questions if he has the size to play three downs in the NFL.

Not only is Smith a talented pass rusher, but he can also defend the run at an elite level, similar to Jadeveon Clowney.

While the full financial details haven’t been released, this move will push the Browns closer to the cap than I’ve seen in the last 20 years. There are still some moves and restructures they can make, but I would imagine that these three holes will remain heading into the regular season.

Cleveland Browns hole No. 3 – Defensive Tackle

The first two positions I’m going to talk about both have the same problem. The Browns have about eight defensive tackles on the roster who all have some potential and likely deserve to be on an NFL roster, but they really only have one who is a proven starter in Dalvin Tomlinson.

Jordan Elliott, Maurice Hurts, Siaki Ika, Trysten Hill, Perrion Winfrey, and Tommy Togia will all be fighting to make this roster and playing time, but it seems like a stretch to think any will be a solid No. 2 option for the 2023 season.

Ika is likely in the cat-bird seat to be the second starter after being selected in the third round of this year’s draft. He's a massive body that can clog up holes, but he has always struggled with his weight and was a bit of a reach in round three. 

I was hopeful that Berry would sign a veteran defensive tackle to help mentor the young guys, but with the big contract to Smith, it seems like Berry is set to find his second and third defensive tackle with the roster he already has.