According to ESPN, the Atlanta Falcons have reached an agreement to sign defensive end Ray Edwards, formerly of the Minnesota Vikings. Edwards had been the second-best free agent defensive end on the market behind Charles Johnson, yet Edwards did not receive anywhere near the contract that Johnson did. Edwards signed a five-year deal worth $30 million, with $11 million guaranteed, according to Adam Schefter.
Why is this a big deal to Browns fans? Since Tuesday, the Edwards-to-Cleveland speculation had been running rampant. Oddly enough, when Johnson re-signed with Carolina, a report came out stating that the Falcons had no interest in Edwards. In fact, not only did Atlanta sign him, Cleveland apparently was the team that had no interest in Edwards:
Ray Edwards' agent Doug Hendrickson: "Cleveland never reached out to us on Ray or ever returned our calls.'' (Edwards signed with Falcons).
Note: Browns fans have already been discussing this news in this FanShot by DontCallMeJoey.
We'll see in a couple of hours why the Browns didn't pursue Edwards. Like some fans, they could have felt that his success in Minnesota was due to the talent around him and it wouldn't be worth overpaying a guy who would not be much of a difference maker. I expect one of the first Browns signings when 6:00 PM EST hits to be Jayme Mitchell though.
One interesting development is Osi Umenyiora's situation with the New York Giants. He didn't show up to training camp today and it is expected that he wants a new contract or is looking to be traded. Twitter should be loosely trusted at these times, but the Browns have been included in speculation of a team who is reaching out to the Giants.