The Cleveland Browns held their annual intrasquad scrimmage on Friday and the news was good on the defensive side of the ball.
Primarily because linebacker Jamie Collins is reportedly looking like the player the Browns were expecting to see when they traded for him midway through the 2016 season.
Collins is recovering from a knee injury suffered during the first quarter of a game last November against the Detroit Lions. Because of a variety of injuries - Collins missed three games with a concussion and defensive end Myles Garrett missed four with a high ankle sprain - the Browns only had their main defensive unit in the field for a few minutes that afternoon at Ford Field.
But that brief time gave fans a glimpse of what the defense can be, and is why the Browns are eager to see Collins back on the field, as linebacker Christian Kirksey told clevelandbrowns.com:
“Whenever you see your teammate back at full force — especially one of the dominant players in this league and on this team — it’s definitely nice to be able to see. So I am glad he is back. That is one of my great teammates, friends off the field, so I’m happy to see him.”
The Browns have the makings of a solid linebacking group with Kirskey, Pro Bowler Joe Schobert and Mychal Kendricks, who was signed in the offseason as a free agent from the Philadelphia Eagles.
Add a healthy Collins to that group, along with what the team is building along the defensive line, and the front seven of the Browns could be primed to give opposing offenses some headaches this fall.