The first day of free agency was filled with a lot of updates in our live blog, but ultimately, the Cleveland Browns weren't able to land any free agents. Bummer!
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)
2015 Browns Free Agency Live Blog - Day 2
7:36 PM: Someone thinks the Patriots are getting a heck of a deal with Sheard:
Text from one league source on Patriots landing former Browns LB/DE Jabaal Sheard: "Will be top 5 signing of free agency, guarantee it."— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 11, 2015
6:55 PM: In former Browns news, the New England Patriots have officially signed OLB Jabaal Sheard:
6:40 PM: Within the past few minutes, a couple of reports have come down from ESPN about the Browns' interest in TE Charles Clay and how the Dolphins' transition tag, coupled with the Bills' strong interest, has complicated matters:
A top #Browns target still appears to be TE Charles Clay. I’m told Browns been prepared to make competitive push. BUF clubhouse leader— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) March 11, 2015
#Browns have wanted Clay from day one. Was considered to be their top target for free agency. Transition tag complicated the situation.— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) March 11, 2015
5:20 PM: The Buffalo Bills have released TE Scott Chandler. Could we see a three-way swap of Chandler to Cleveland, TE Jordan Cameron to Miami, and TE Charles Clay to Buffalo?
5:17 PM: In an article by ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, he says that he doesn't think the Browns were ever serious players for QB Sam Bradford, nor were they the team that inquired to the Eagles about Bradford this morning:
There was correspondence. The belief is that before the Browns signed Josh McCown Feb. 27, they talked with the Rams about Bradford and backup quarterback Austin Davis, St. Louis’ restricted free agent who started eight games last season. That’s where the momentum stopped, if it ever existed. What seems clear is the Browns probably could have had Bradford if they were willing to part with at least one second-round pick for him.
So the Browns supposedly thought about Bradford before, not after, they signed QB Josh McCown.
4:22 PM: DT Ndamukong Suh is officially a member of the Miami Dolphins, and WR Andre Johnson signed a three-year, $21 million deal with the Indianapolis Colts. Nothing news with the Browns.
3:38 PM: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are releasing last year's big free agent signing in the NFL, DE/OLB Michael Johnson. After showing promise with the Bengals, he didn't have the most prolific 2014 season. Now, he will get to double dip for whoever wants to pay him next.
Johnson had only four sacks after signing a five-year, $43.75-M contract as a FA last year.— Rick Stroud (@NFLSTROUD) March 11, 2015
2:35 PM: I'm afraid it might not be a very busy day for Browns news. When the news comes, it'll come. Nothing appears to be imminent.
1:50 PM: Eagles head coach Chip Kelly just had a press conference that dominated the NFL news world for about 20 minutes. He said that the team is sticking with Sam Bradford as their quarterback and will not sell the farm for Marcus Mariota, but then he also said that an NFL team called him this morning wanting to trade a first-round pick for Bradford.
The first team that came to everyone's mind was Cleveland -- who else would give up a first rounder for him? But then, if the Browns were willing to give a first-rounder for Bradford, why didn't they just execute that trade with the Rams? And, why in the world would Philadelphia say no to a first-round pick for a guy who is a big risk health-wise? There seem to be some holes to what Kelly is trying to sell the media, but you never know.
1:20 PM: The terms of QB Brian Hoyer's deal with the Texans have been unveiled. We have a post up comparing what Hoyer got vs. what the Browns gave to QB Josh McCown. Long story short, it wasn't about the money (but we pretty much already knew that).
1:02 PM: Here is our story on the Browns re-signing WR Marlon Moore.
12:52 PM: Bang! The free agency hammer drops as the Browns re-sign WR Marlon Moore. In all seriousness, it's still a good move as he's a valuable special teams contributor.
12:38 PM: Another retirement in the NFL, this time from CB Cortland Finnegan. He did take a shot at WR Andre Johnson on his way out, though.
12:28 PM: In case you're wondering how the Browns' 2014 free agency compares to the Browns' 2015 free agency:
11:30 AM: I thought I had covered this, but I guess I forgot to. Last night, it was reported that TE Jordan Cameron is taking a visit with the Miami Dolphins today. It's an interesting development because the Dolphins, Browns, and Bills are going to play tug-of-war over TE Charles Clay (transition tagged by Miami), while Cleveland and Miami are still in the mix for Cameron. Cameron could be a backup plan for Miami if they lose Clay to Cleveland or Buffalo.
11:04 AM: It's only a matter of time before QB Brian Hoyer to the Texans becomes official. There were a few rumors yesterday that QB Matt Cassel might not pass his physical with the Bills, which would've left Hoyer landing there as a possibility. The trade is complete, though, so Hoyer seems set on Houston. We'll see what type of contract he gets compared to QB Josh McCown.
Brian Hoyer is at the #Texans facility to take team physical.— Adam Caplan (@caplannfl) March 11, 2015
10:58 AM: We can cross NT Dan Williams off the list, as he has signed with the Oakland Raiders. That really puts a damper on the Browns' hopes of improving the defensive line this season, unless it's via the draft. I can't see any free agent tricks to drastically improve the run defense that Cleveland could still have up their sleeve:
Source: DT Dan Williams has agreed to terms with the #Raiders.— Rand Getlin (@Rand_Getlin) March 11, 2015
10:30 AM: And, we're finally caught up with the news from overnight.
10:29 AM: With the 49ers releasing WR Stevie Johnson, people wonder if the Browns could have interest due to the connection with receivers coach Joker Phillips. Also, Kevin Jones of Browns.com tries to remind fans of the strategy the front office is taking in free agency:
WR Stevie Johnson, released by the 49ers, played for Browns WR coach Joker Phillips at Kentucky. Johnson is 6-foot-2, 28-years-old.— Kevin Jones (@Mr_KevinJones) March 11, 2015
And again, Pettine and Farmer have been as transparent as possible this offseason: The Browns moves will be calculated.— Kevin Jones (@Mr_KevinJones) March 11, 2015
10:18 AM: With several players retiring in the NFL, former Browns offensive lineman Jason Pinkston is looking to get back into the NFL after his blood clot issues. I don't know if a team will take a flier on him, but it'll be something to follow in July:
All these players retiring & I just can't wait to be cleared in July jeez— Jason Pinkston (@JasonPinkstonOL) March 11, 2015
10:06 AM: I think Lane Adkins of The OBR forgot to sleep last night. At 4:30 AM this morning, he explained why the Browns haven't signed a nose tackle yet, but also pointed out that the reason Cleveland hasn't signed one is the same reason these players haven't inked a deal elsewhere in the NFL yet:
NT position isn’t viewed by Browns as one which said player is expected to be an every down player due to passing down CLE defensive scheme— LA - theOBR (@LaneAdkins) March 11, 2015
Thus, the Browns have not been excited about offering/discussing the 7-8 million dollar contract a couple of the name players have seek— LA - theOBR (@LaneAdkins) March 11, 2015
Adkins mentions NT Dan Williams and NT Terrance Knighton, specifically. In other words, these players view themselves as the best free agents in their class, and they want to be paid. NFL teams also acknowledge them as the best in their class, but are saying, "we'll only play for 40% of the snaps, so you're not worth $7 to $8 million a year to us."
When I said I wanted Williams, my contract projection for him was 4 years, $23 million, with $10 million guaranteed. He could be aiming for 4 years, $30 million with half of that guaranteed, an expense which Cleveland might not want to budge on. We'll see if it costs them Williams, or if it helps drive the price down if other teams turn him down too.
9:56 AM: At least one NFL reporter is confident that QB Drew Brees is not going anywhere. Brees might not be going anywhere, but to say that the idea wasn't entertained is probably a tad off:
I can tell you right now, 100%, Drew Brees isn't going anywhere and anyone insisting they're shopping him is lying to you.— Benjamin Allbright (@AllbrightNFL) March 11, 2015
9:50 AM: In case you missed it late last night, because I certainly did, free agent LB Jason Worilds announced his retirement at age 27 after just five seasons in the NFL.
Jason Worilds retiring at age 27. Him, Patrick Willis and Jake Locker within 24 hours. Different world man.— Will Brinson (@WillBrinson) March 11, 2015
This marks another key defender to leave the AFC North. Worilds was projected to receive a contract with $7 to $8 million per year and $15 million guaranteed. For him to walk away from that possible money, along with two other players calling it a career earlier in the day, is a rather startling development in the NFL. Could this be a trend we see in the future as players look to protect their long-term health.
9:35 AM: The big Browns-related news to watch this morning involves the cornerback position, as Cleveland is showing interest in CB Perrish Cox and CB Brandon Browner. If the Browns sign either player, it'll be very interesting to see how their contracts compare to what CB Buster Skrine received. If it's the same value, then it means the Browns didn't think as highly of Skrine as we thought they did.
If the Browns are able to snag a cornerback, we probably won't hear about it for a couple of days. Cox isn't visiting Cleveland until Thursday, and Browner is busy visiting other teams before he moves on to Cleveland.
9:30 AM: Good morning, Browns fans, and welcome to Day 2 of NFL Free Agency! If you are looking for a recap of what went down on the first day of free agency, go skim through our Day 1 live blog. According to our projections, the Browns still have about $41.744 million remaining in cap space. The Browns are still working the phones fast and furious, so we'll see if any of their work pans out to a contract signing today. In the next few minutes, I'll get caught up with any of the rumors I might have missed this morning or last night, so stay with us.