Browns land versatile lineman with tremendous upside as UDFA rookie

This signing could pay off in the long run
Jalen Sundell
Jalen Sundell / Tommy Martino/University of Montana/GettyImages

As soon as the 2024 NFL Draft ended, the Cleveland Browns got right back to work. Within minutes of the conclusion of the weekend-long event, they started adding undrafted free agents. Initially, they were adding more defensive firepower but before long, they were looking at offensive line depth.

They added a couple of well-known names expected to be drafted including Javion Cohen from Miami and Jalen Sundell from North Dakota State. Cohen was seen as a potential seventh-round selection but Sundell — one of the top undrafted signings so far — was predicted to go in Round 5 or 6 by some draft pundits.

Sundell is a versatile player who spent much of his career with the Bison playing center. In 2023, he moved to left tackle where he continued to shine as a pass protector. In 406 pass-blocking snaps, Sundell surrendered just nine total pressures and only one sack.

He played in just five games in 2022 but was just as impressive with no pressures in those appearances. The prior year, he surrendered a single sack and one additional quarterback hurry.

The primary concern with the 6-foot-5, 300-pound Sundell is the level of competition he faced while playing at NDSU. While it's true teams want to see how the small-school prospects fare against elite players, Sundell did what you want to see in such a situation — he dominated everyone he faced.

Jalen Sundell has a huge opportunity with the Browns

Now in Cleveland, he has a golden opportunity in front of him. Cleveland was expected to draft a potential heir to Jedrick Wills at left tackle. The former 10th overall pick is in the final season of his rookie contract and hasn't done enough to warrant an extension.

The Browns didn't add a tackle in the draft which means Sundell could be granted the opportunity to develop as a rookie and prove he deserves a shot at competing in 2025. It might seem like a long shot but with his skill set — especially in pass protection — he could be another UDFA gem who carves out a long NFL career.

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