The Cleveland Browns have found their veteran receiver, signing WR Nate Burleson to a one-year contract on Sunday. The agreement between the two sides comes after Burleson met with the team on Saturday.
New Cleveland WR Nate Burleson is a solid pickup for Browns. Can help on field and be veteran leader off it.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 7, 2014
The Browns will hope that Burleson is a better veteran leader than WR Davone Bess was last year. Bess, who has since been released, dropped a ton of passes in 2013 and had significant personal issues that landed him on the non-football injury list to close out the season.
Burleson will be entering his 12th season in the NFL. He began his career as a third-round draft pick by the Minnesota Vikings in 2003. He played there for three seasons before becoming a members of the Seattle Seahawks from 2006-2009. From 2010-2013, he was with the Lions, sometimes as the No. 2 receiver opposite of WR Calvin Johnson. Burleson will have no issues playing second-fiddle to a star receiver, because he had already been doing it in Detroit.
Given Burleson's experience, it seems likely that he would vault over WR Greg Little on the depth chart. Little is younger, but has struggled with dropped passes and is in the final year of his contract. In essence, both Little and Burleson are both playing on one-year deals. WR Andrew Hawkins, WR Travis Benjamin, and WR Josh Cooper are the other three receivers who will be in the mix.
This past season, Burleson broke his arm in a single-car accident after he was trying to save a pizza from falling in his car. It's one of those "what the hell" type of stories that I'm sure Burleson's new teammates will be able to rag on him about.