3 more Browns contract adjustments could free up $42 million in 2024

The Browns have made some moves but there are more available

Cleveland Browns Introduce Quarterback Deshaun Watson
Cleveland Browns Introduce Quarterback Deshaun Watson / Nick Cammett/GettyImages
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With the first full week of free agency behind us, many of the big targets are officially off the board. The Cleveland Browns haven’t been major spenders to this point, but they have done a great job of keeping a lot of pieces from the 2023 defense that was so good.

There was speculation that Andrew Berry would spend big at defensive tackle to pair with Dalvin Tomlinson, but instead, he brought back Maurice Hurst, Shelby Harris, Rodney McLeod, and Za’Darius Smith. All three were good market contracts for the Browns and made a ton of sense.

The big splash on offense was the trade for Jerry Jeudy which was much needed, but other than that, it’s been quiet. Cleveland is strapped for cash on paper with just under $6 million of cap space, but there are plenty of moves to be made to help with that. Here are three contract adjustments we could see before the start of the season to free up some cash.

Browns contract No. 3: Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, LB

While the Cleveland Browns scored big getting Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah in round two of the 2021 draft, unfortunately, they lose that fifth-year option (first-round picks only). JOK has had a few minor injuries in his first three seasons, but other than that, he has been spectacular.

The former college safety is extremely athletic which was always the draw to him. At 215 pounds, I was more than slightly concerned that he was too small to play linebacker in the NFL. To this point, he has shown he is more than tough enough to stick his nose up the middle and flash that safety speed in coverage and covering the edges.

In a defense where Jim Schwartz moves him all over the field, JOK has the potential to be an elite NFL linebacker. If Berry is smart (which he is), he will look to extend JOK before the start of the season. By doing that he can give him a big raise in 2024 from his $2 million salary, which will spread the load over the next two or three seasons. 

This move would likely increase the cap hit in 2024 unless they paid a bulk of it in a signing bonus which is possible, but locking him up now could save the team $10-15 million over the next two seasons.