4 Cleveland Browns who could be entering their final season with the franchise in 2023
By Randy Gurzi
3. Browns LB Jacob Phillips
This one could be tough because Jacob Phillips has all the talent in the world. He had a nose for the ball while at LSU and was the top tackler during their title run, even with Patrick Queen on the same roster. This is why the Browns were so excited to land him in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft.
In need of more explosive playmakers at the position, the speedy Phillips was brought in. Unfortunately, injuries have kept him from reaching his full potential.
As a rookie, he played in just nine games and had 25 tackles with one pass defense. He did, however, end the season on a high note as he had 10 of those tackles in their Week 17 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers. He followed that up with five tackles over the two playoff games that year and hopes were high in 2021.
Again, injuries slowed him down as Phillips had just 17 tackles and a sack in four games during his sophomore campaign. 2022 wasn't much better as he was lost in Week 7 and finished with 29 tackles and two sacks. He was also struggling on the field that season, perhaps with injuries already catching up to him.
Cleveland didn't add any linebackers in the draft, which was a bit surprising. They did, however, retain Sione Takitaki and Anthony Walker. That's good for Phillips who should still find plenty of playing time but when his contract is done, the Browns might decide to look for more durable help.