It was a busy day for the Cleveland Browns. After having their first closed training camp practice session of the season this morning, the front office was busy making deals with teams they were formerly affiliated with.
As fans already discussed earlier today, the big move was the Browns acquiring former first-round defensive tackle Brodrick Bunkley from the Philadelphia Eagles. In exchange, Cleveland shipped a fifth-round pick in the 2012 draft to the Eagles. Bunkley was touted highly in 2006 when the Eagles drafted him at No. 16 overall, but he has basically been a bust in terms of being the dominant player the team hoped he would be. He hasn't been a complete wash though, and is a very serviceable depth player. I'm not sure if you could ask for a more ideal type of guy to be in a three-man rotation at the defensive tackle position with Phil Taylor and Ahtyba Rubin.
The Tom Heckert connection likely played a factor in Bunkley coming to Cleveland. He'll be a person who helps Cleveland stop the run, something he's done well in Philadelphia. JasonB from our Eagles affiliate had this to say about Bunkley:
Never developed into the player people hoped, but not a bad player. I’d say he’s an average NFL DT. Doesn’t really provide anything in terms of penetration, but doesn’t really get moved off his spot either. Holds the point of the attack well, solid rotational player. [Click here for other Eagles fans reaction at Bleeding Green Nation]
Well done, Heckert. As for the other trade the Browns made, it looks like they acquired former St. Louis Rams offensive guard John Greco. Guess who he played for last year? Pat Shurmur. The news was revealed by Jim Thomas, reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
League sourcesconfirm that guard john greco has been traded to browns by rams. Terms undisclosed.
With the Browns re-signing Billy Yates this morning but there being no news on veteran guard Floyd Womack, it sounds like Greco could very well be taking Womack's spot. Greco was a third-round pick in the 2008 NFL Draft by the Rams, so he's definitely still young. At 6-4, 329 lbs, he is considered a good run blocker and was born in Youngstown, Ohio. He also plays the offensive tackle position.
Greco has not started much in his career (only four games in three years), but Pro Football Focus graded him highly last season:
Weirdly, the one Ram who really impressed us last year was one who saw only 153 snaps, John Greco. Unfortunately the rest of the guys were less impressive. Jason Brown has yet to go any way toward earning that big deal he got, and recent high draft pick tackles are far from impressive. They have some talent and potential, but if it doesn’t show up on the field it’s not much use.
Terms of the trade have not yet been disclosed, so we'll wait and see who/what the Browns gave up. Two good depth moves by the front office. The moves might not make national headlines, but if it means we don't see a huge dropoff when our starters need a breather, then it is what builds solid football teams.