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USFL’s Defensive Player of the Year signs with Browns

Camp fodder or possible roster member?

USFL Week Seven - Philadelphia Stars v Houston Gamblers Photo by Donald Page/USFL/Getty Images

GM Andrew Berry does a good job with tweaking the roster. You never know when a player will stick and then become a valued contributor.

Depth is crucial to every team and role players are a must. The latest addition to the roster is Chris Odom, who was the USFL’s Defensive Player of the Year according to a report on Pro Football Talk.

Odom (6’-4”, 256 pounds) played for the Houston Gamblers and wrecked total havoc on opposing offensive lines in that league which just completed their first reboot season. His stats include 12.5 sacks, 41 total tackles, eight tackles for loss, one batted pass and six forced fumbles.

His impressive season drew the attention of many NFL clubs. He posted on Twitter:

“903 days since I was back in the league. Thank you @theUSFL @USFLGamblers for the opportunity to continue to live my dream. Next chapter. Let’s get it @ClevelandBrowns.”

Oddly enough, Odom played for James Martin High School in Arlington, Texas. It just so happens one of his teammates was Myles Garrett. Odom garnered All-District honors and also participated in track.

From there he attended Arkansas State where he had 40 starts with 87 total tackles, 15.5 sacks and four forced fumbles. He was timed in the 40 at 4.83.

After not being drafted in the 2017 NFL draft, Odom signed with Atlanta but was released on the final cutdown. Green Bay claimed him where he spent the entire season on the 53-man roster and played in seven games with six tackles and one tackle for loss. The following training camp he was again waived on the final cutdown.

Odom sat out the entire 2018 NFL season before he was signed to play in the Alliance of American Football and was allocated to Salt Lake. There he recorded seven tackles, 2.5 sacks and two pass defenses in an eight game shortened season. Atlanta resigned him and subsequently cut him.

NFL: DEC 15 Eagles at Redskins
Chris Odom (50)
Photo by Mark Goldman/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Washington signed Odom to their practice squad. He was activated to the main roster in late November. Against Carolina, he sacked the quarterback twice including a strip sack fumble that resulted in a defensive touchdown which sealed a win. In four games he had 10 tackles, two sacks plus that forced fumble. He was released in February.

Calgary of the CFL signed him and he played three games before being waived. That brought him to the USFL where he was Houston’s second round pick.

Oddly enough, Odom’s father, Cliff Odom, played one season with the Browns after being drafted in the third round of the 1980 NFL draft as a linebacker and went on to have a 13-year career.

The defensive line group is a logjam as it is. With Odom’s weight, this only qualifies him for one of the EDGE spots instead of a possible DT position.

The left DE is commanded by Garrett with his backups listed on the depth chart as Chase Winovich, Stephen Weatherly and Curtis Weaver. The right defensive end lists the starter as Jadeveon Clowney backed up by rookies Alex Wright and Isaiah Thomas, plus Isaac Rochell.