[FRIDAY'S DAY 4 FREE AGENCY LIVE BLOG IS HERE]
The Cleveland Browns didn't really make a splash on Wednesday in terms of free agency, but the team did make headlines after the tweet we posted that included a whiteboard with the names of free agents on it. It ended up being the web / video production's notes of players to prepare videos of based on Internet rumors, but it was still a fun little peak into the inside workings of an NFL team.
Today, we're returning for another live blog, covering short one-liners about the latest small rumors, signings, or trades involving Cleveland or other NFL teams. You should also use the comments section as your free agency open thread! (Newest updates will be at the top of the live blog below)
2014 Browns Free Agency Live Blog - Day 3
The free agency live blog / open thread for Friday is here.
10:10 PM: Now it's official: a team spokesman from the Browns has confirmed that RB Ben Tate is meeting with the team. After all of this, I would expect a deal to happen soon.
7:20 PM: I'm back. What did I miss while away for three hours? Some signings around the NFL:
- The Colts signed C Phil Costa, which might take them out of the Alex Mack sweepstakes.
- WR Ted Ginn ended up signing with the Arizona Cardinals on a 3-year deal.
- CB Captain Munnerlyn signed a three-year deal with the Vikings.
- OLB LaMarr Woodley signed a two-year deal with the Raiders.
- The Ravens are still trying to lure WR Steve Smith to play for them.
- The deadline for the Bengals to match the offer the Browns made to WR Andrew Hawkins is this Tuesday.
4:00 PM: C Alex Mack talked to the IndyStar about the possibility of playing for the Colts, and how he's handling the situation of having a transition tag on him.
3:56 PM: I will be headed off soon; hopefully one of my colleagues can pick up the slack while I'm away for a few hours. If not, the comments section is a great place to catch all of the latest updates. If you're not a member of DBN already, join and introduce yourself now (but remember, no subject line!).
3:21 PM: Similarly, last year, Rob Chudzinski and the Browns were aggressive to pursue TE Gary Barnidge. I forgot to make note of the fact that TE Jim Dray and ILB Karlos Dansby were teammates last year.
Jim Dray says #Browns were aggressive from start of F/A & feeling was mutual; Kyle Shanahan's use of TEs makes it good fit for him— Daryl Ruiter (@RuiterWrongFAN) March 13, 2014
3:06 PM: A choice quote about free agency, at the Raiders' expense:
I'll wait for team doctor's text. RT @AdamSchefter: Text from Justin Tuck: "Done deal." He's an Oakland Raider.— Eric Edholm (@Eric_Edholm) March 13, 2014
2:37 PM: WR Ted Ginn is taking a trip to Arizona to meet with the Cardinals. At this point, besides SS Donte Whitner lobbying for him, there has been nothing connecting Ginn to the Browns.
2:30 PM: We have a post up on the Browns signing TE Jim Dray now. He played a lot for the Cardinals last year, but was mostly a blocker, and PFF did not rate him very highly. Right now, I'd have to imagine that the job of TE Gary Barnidge is not in jeopardy as the backup tight end, but Dray could clear the youngsters at the bottom of the depth chart.
2:17 PM: I kid you not -- the very minute I stepped away to go get lunch, the Browns announced the signing of TE Jim Dray, formerly of the Arizona Cardinals. I'll have more on him in a little bit.
1:24 PM: And thar she blows!
B/c of the structure of Andrew Hawkins' now-signed offer sheet with the Browns, I'm told the Bengals rethought things, now unlikely to match— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) March 13, 2014
12:56 PM: Interesting. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com is reporting different contract numbers for the offer sheet that WR Andrew Hawkins signed than what was reported a few days ago. If Rapoport is correct, Hawkins' deal is actually front-loaded rather than back-loaded, and would possibly make it tougher for the Bengals to be willing to match. Also, Rapoport makes it sound like Hawkins signed the offer sheet on Thursday, so the five-day countdown to see if the Bengals match might begin today:
#Bengals WR Andrew Hawkins signed his offer sheet with #Browns and wow. Big commitment. It pays him $10.8M over first 2 years. $13.6M over 4— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 13, 2014
#Browns made it hard on #Bengals for cap purposes. $3.8M roster bonus counts this year. In all, $5.8M cap hit for Hawkins Year 1. $5M Year 2— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 13, 2014
12:38 PM: Ah, thanks for the memories, Brandon Weeden.
12:33 PM: The Carolina Panthers lost WR Steve Smith...but at least they have QB Derek Anderson coming back!
Happy to be coming back to Charlotte next season! #keeppounding#wantthatring— Derek Anderson (@DAnderson314) March 13, 2014
12:30 PM: This is a pretty awesome indicator of Cleveland weather:
Spot the difference? #throwbackyesterday #grass #snow #anywaythewindblows pic.twitter.com/YHbIvkrpGh— Cleveland Browns (@BrownsGrounds) March 13, 2014
12:26 PM: To those who want to spare their minds of free agency for a second, here is who Mel Kiper projects going to the Browns now.
12:23 PM: OverTheCap.com confirmed to me that there is a conflict regarding the details of the amount of guaranteed money CB Isaiah Trufant is getting. His deal is for 2 years, $1.54 million. Some reports say he is getting $1 million guaranteed, while others say it's just $150,000 guaranteed. I'll let you know if I hear anything else.
12:05 PM: Not a big deal, but I'm still trying to get clarification on the contract details for CB Isaiah Trufant. Once I get confirmation on something, I can provide a slight updated cap space figure for the Browns. Either way, the Browns still have a ton of dough remaining. They won't spend all of it -- makes sense to roll over some again into 2015 to ensure that extensions for guys like CB Joe Haden, TE Jordan Cameron WR Josh Gordon, and (possibly) C Alex Mack take care of themselves.
11:40 AM: Some more news from Lane Adkins of the OBR, who stresses that the Browns have been serious players for WR Julian Edelman from the get-go. Based on his tweets, it sounds like both the Patriots and the Browns are the two teams trying to secure his services. Is he trying to work each team for the most money?
NE working to retain him, Browns serious player RT @lightning2685: @LaneAdkins @TheOBR @irishjay chance he comes to the browns or back to NE— Lane Adkins (@LaneAdkins) March 13, 2014
11:36 AM: Updating on the rumors surrounding DE Alex Carrington, it sounds like the Pittsburgh Steelers are interested in his services. The Browns are stacked on the defensive line, so missing out on Carrington wouldn't be a big loss, although you'd like to see him stay out of the division.
Former #Bills DE Alex Carrington is going to visit the #Steelers tonight, per source. They are really interested, just lost Ziggy Hood.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 13, 2014
11:34 AM: The Carolina Panthers have officially released veteran WR Steve Smith. The Baltimore Ravens are rumored to be the favorites to snatch him up. Smith seems like the type of player who wants to play for a team that has been contending, and Baltimore fits that bill.
11:31 AM: This will be interesting for Browns fans who know Tony Grossi:
It's true. My own show on 850 WKNR. #HeyTony. Every Tuesday 6-7 pm. W @HammerNation19. Wow. #Browns— Tony Grossi (@TonyGrossi) March 13, 2014
11:08 AM: Not much going on in the way of news. While the OBR forums are down, Lane Adkins tweeted that the Browns are still interested in RB Ben Tate...it just might take some patience getting there.
Slowly RT @vbrechbill: @LaneAdkins *Tweet the Insiders* still moving in the right direction for Tate?— Lane Adkins (@LaneAdkins) March 13, 2014
10:08 AM: We've been hearing about ILB Arthur Moats for awhile now, and now Lane Adkins of The OBR is dishing out that an agreement is bound to happen soon:
#Browns are looking to add former Bills ILB Arthur Moats per @TheOBR Lane Adkins— Fred Greetham (@FredGreethamOBR) March 13, 2014
10:05 AM: The Eagles have signed free agent CB Nolan Carroll. That is only relevant because his name was on the whiteboard yesterday as one of the "new names."
9:42 AM: PFF looked at ten free agent bargains who are still available. DE Alex Carrington, who has been linked to the Browns, is one of them:
With the top tier free agents snapped up, @PFF_Gordon looks at 10 potential bargains still out there https://t.co/7iCS8LNcWg— Pro Football Focus (@PFF) March 13, 2014
9:30 AM: Ha! Maybe we should just ignore any rumors about RB Ben Tate from here on out:
Just been told Ben Tate is not visiting #Browns today— Daryl Ruiter (@RuiterWrongFAN) March 13, 2014
9:00 AM: Various local outlets have said that RB Ben Tate is expected to meet with Cleveland today, after all of the confusing reports from yesterday. There is news about another running back, though, and it will make the Eagles' offense all-the-more-frightening: Chip Kelly is getting his hands on RB Darren Sproles...and they already have RB LeSean McCoy.
Filed to ESPN: New Orleans is trading RB Darren Sproles to Philadelphia, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 13, 2014
8:48 AM: We already heard yesterday about SS Donte Whitner trying to recruit WR Ted Ginn to the Browns, but another player is busy trying to recruit a receiver. According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, QB Brian Hoyer is doing his best to convince WR Julian Edelman to depart New England and come to Cleveland:
I have heard that Browns QB Brian Hoyer has been trying to recruit Edelman to Cleveland as well. They played together in NE— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) March 13, 2014
8:45 AM: Good morning, Browns fans! We are into Day 3 of free agency, and there are still plenty of moves to be made. If you are just getting up, I encourage you to check out the article we posted last night on free agents we'd still like to see the Browns pursue over the next couple of days.