No need for Cleveland Browns to panic in March
No team in the history of the NFL has ever won or lost a Super Bowl in the month of March. That's especially true for the Cleveland Browns, who have never won one of those, yet some fans want to work themselves into a panic during the third week of March.
This is the time of year where every single franchise is vying to add the right pieces to make a championship run, but truth be told, we will never know how good or bad these moves are until we can see them in action.
Naturally, fans want the absolute best for their beloved franchises, but that's not how any of this works. Not every single highly touted free agent will land with your favorite team as that simply is not feasible.
This year, the Browns were in on the likes of top-name defensive tackles Javon Hargrave and Dre'Mont Jones, as well as safety Jessie Bates, but none of them ended up putting ink to paper in Cleveland. That's not a bad thing whatsoever nor does it mean the franchise has not been showing that they are all in.
General manager Andrew was said to be "the most aggressive" at the NFL combine in terms of talking to teams about players to acquire either in free agency or via trade. Speaking of trades, the Cowboys just traded for wide receiver Brandin Cooks, a player who was linked to having interest from the Browns.
This move upset the Dawg Pound when they saw the trade was for a fifth and sixth round pick. They believed Berry should have pulled that trigger, but it's not always that easy. It's not like a general manager who is looking to unload a player posts in the group chat with all the other GMs and give the details on how to get the deal done.
Cooks would have been a nice addition to the team, but that wasn't a make-or-break move that Cleveland whiffed on. Also, just because Berry is in on any number of players, doesn't mean said player will be interested in the Browns. Yes, I know, how could anyone ever not want to play for the Browns? DPD's own Greg Newland gives three reasons Cooks wasn't a realistic target.
Don't fret, there are still other trade options the team can and likely will explore.
Another thing with this is the fact that Berry didn't overspend for some of these players. Fans always want to play couch general manager and try to dictate how the team should spend money that does not belong to the fans.
Had the Browns signed any of the three aforementioned players in free agency, a lot of the fans that are not pleased would be unhappy with the amount of money - again, that isn't theirs - given to these players.
"Is it 'Oochie Wally' or 'One Mic'?" - Jay Z
The Browns were all in on the top defensive tackles on the market, an area they needed to focus on this offseason as the run defense was putrid for most of the 2022 season. Berry was able to sign one of the top names, just not the one many fans wanted, but Dalvin Tomlinson is a great signing for this defense, bringing stability with him.
That wasn't the only defensive move the team made as they signed EDGE rusher Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, who has a chance to build on his 2022 campaign. While the Browns did not get Bates, they went out and got Juan Thornhill, who checks a lot of boxes for what the team needs.
Center Ethan Pocic coming back is a huge deal for this team as he really blossomed last year when he wasn't even supposed to start. Other familiar faces returning are linebacker Sione Takitaki and cornerback AJ Green.
So let's pump the breaks on all this panic talk just because Berry and the Browns didn't go out and land all the top free agents, but instead filled holes on the roster with quality and depth instead of getting one or two players for the same money. Fans want all the splash and pizazz, and again, that simply is not doable from year to year.
After all, The Rolling Stones once taught us that you can't always get what you want.
Cleveland is clearly all in on this year based on the blockbuster trade they made a season ago to acquire Deshaun Watson. They fired and replaced their defensive and special teams coordinators and went and got each of those units some guys who can be instant upgrades in 2023.