Cleveland Browns general manager Andrew Berry put in some hard work this offseason fixing the problems along the offensive line.
Jack Conklin arrived in free agency to take over at right tackle, while the 2020 NFL Draft brought Jedrick Wills Jr. in the first round to fix the left tackle position.
Those were big moves, but the Browns still have an issue at right guard, where the current candidates include:
- Wyatt Teller, who allowed 16 quarterback pressures - in just 11 games - posted a run-blocking grade of 48.2 from Pro Football Focus and an overall PFF grade of 56.7.
- Drew Forbes, a sixth-round selection in the 2019 NFL Draft who spent most of the season on injured reserve.
- Nick Harris, a fifth-round selection in this year’s draft who has potential, but is projected to be better at center than guard.
Knowing that, there is no reason for Berry to not give a call to veteran right guard Larry Warford, who was released by the New Orleans Saints on Friday in a move to save more than $7 million on the salary cap, according to NFL.com.
Warford has been in the league for seven years - the first four with the Detroit Lions after being drafted in the third round of the 2013 NFL Draft, and the last three with the Saints after signing as a free agent - so he is experienced.
He is also durable, having started 101 regular season games and six playoff games during his career.
Warford is also talented as he made the Pro Bowl in all three of his seasons with the Saints.
Warford (75.8) earned the third-highest overall grade of his career this past season.— PFF NO Saints (@PFF_Saints) May 8, 2020
He ranked as a Top 25 Guard in each of his 3 seasons with the #Saints.
Warford will make for an immediate impact signing for a team with some extra cap room. https://t.co/LpmtHhRL2a
He should also be affordable, as he was scheduled to be paid a base salary of $7.65 million this season, according to ESPN.com, and the Browns currently have just a bit more than $39 million in available cap space, according to spotrac.com.
Sign Warford, and suddenly the Browns have no holes on the offensive line, which should maximize the potential of what should be one of the league’s most-talented offenses.
The only reason to not make a move would be if the Browns believe that Warford’s game is in decline, which the Saints reportedly do, or if he does not fit the blocking scheme that head coach Kevin Stefanski and offensive line coach Bill Callahan are looking to install.
Otherwise, it is hard to find an argument against the Browns at least checking in with Warford’s representatives to find out if he is interested in being a part of what the Browns are building.