On Tuesday, the Cleveland Browns signed veteran offensive guard Earl Watford, according to multiple reports.
A fourth-round pick in 2013 by the Arizona Cardinals, Watford spent four seasons with the club, starting 21 games (including 2 games in 2017) at both guard positions and right tackle.
Watford signed with the Chicago Bears this offseason, and it was considered a moderate surprise when they cut him the other day, although the writing appeared to be on the wall with recent reports indicating that Chicago had been trying to trade him.
Cleveland’s offensive line is constructed with versatile linemen who can play multiple positions, and Watford adds even more flexibility to the group. When looking at roster cuts, it’s always important to have backup linemen who can play multiple spots in order to minimize the amount of players the team must keep at the position.
The Browns could be giving Watford a heavy look this Thursday against the Detroit Lions. Why? Because Spencer Drango and Austin Corbett have been playing just about every snap at the guard positions this preseason, so the team doesn’t have much film of their depth on tape. Watford isn’t that big of a name to where he’ll be guaranteed to make the 53-man roster, but you would figure that Cleveland wouldn’t sign a veteran player this close to roster cuts without giving him serious consideration for making it.
Once the signing becomes official, a corresponding roster move should be coming so the Browns stay within the limit of a 90-man roster.