We have reached the weekend of Cleveland Browns free agency, otherwise known as Day 6 and Day 7. We will dedicate this particular live blog to any weekend news about the team, and then that will conclude our live blog format until the first three days of the 2023 NFL Draft in April. To see how these moves will impact Super Bowl odds, check out DraftKings Sportsbook.
Follow the live blog below for news and rumors regarding the Browns and free agency throughout the day! You can catch up on yesterday’s live blog here.
2023 Browns Free Agency Live Blog - Weekend (Day 6 and 7)
7:30 PM: What seemed like a potential fit given his connections with Kevin Stefanski will not happen as WR Adam Thielen is signing a three-year deal with the Carolina Panthers:
— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) March 19, 2023
According to my source(s), @athielen19 is signing with the Carolina Panthers.
The 3 time Pro Bowler has agreed to a 3 year deal.
The 32 year old feels GREAT.. according to my source(s) pic.twitter.com/wdm0ALelZJ
9:45 AM: A target that many Cleveland fans hoped would reunite with Deshaun Watson with the Browns is headed to Dallas. Based on the trade compensation, and reports that Houston is paying some of the contract, it seems Cleveland (and perhaps Watson) didn’t feel the same as the fans:
Dallas expected to give up a fifth-round pick this year and a sixth-round pick next year, per source. Cooks' $18M salary is guaranteed, so will be interesting to see if HOU taking on some of money.
— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) March 19, 2023
Dallas gets a true vertical threat to complement CeeDee Lamb. https://t.co/iKuGUaqnEa
As I noted on Twitter, a vertical threat is not the team’s immediate need. It may be the future need, which is what the NFL draft is for, but the immediate need is short-area quickness.
Cooks reportedly wanted to play for the Cowboys which may have impacted where he was traded. A quick move from Houston up to Dallas for the receiver.
9:00 AM: Browns are getting high marks so far in free agency.
6:30 PM: The Cleveland Browns have seen six of their unrestricted free agents leave for what they clearly believe to be green pastures. The list, with the new destination, includes:
QB Jacoby Brissett (Washington Commanders)
DT Taven Bryan (Indianapolis Colts)
LB Tae Davis (Atlanta Falcons)
G Hjalte Froholdt (Arizona Cardinals)
CB Greedy Williams (Philadelphia Eagles)
DE Chase Winovich (Houston Texans)
4:50 PM: The Cleveland Browns entered the offseason with 21 players who were set to be unrestricted free agents.
As the first week of free agency comes to a close, here are the players who remain unsigned:
RB Kareem Hunt
RB D’Ernest Johnson
TE Pharaoh Brown
TE Jesse James
OT Chris Hubbard
DE Jadeveon Clowney
DE Stephen Weatherly
LB Anthony Walker Jr.
LB Deion Jones
LB Jordan Kunaszyk
LB Jermaine Carter Jr.
LB Reggie Ragland
S Ronnie Harrison
In addition, restricted free agent Michael Dunn, a backup offensive lineman, still remains available.
11:13 AM: One position the Browns are still looking to address is linebacker. It doesn’t sound like they will make a huge splash at the position, but they want a veteran on the cheap side:
#Browns have been in the market for a linebacker for a few days now. Team is looking to bring a veteran in at the minimum. I’d assume that’s the next spot filled.
— Brad Stainbrook (@StainbrookNFL) March 17, 2023
Anthony Walker is still available.
11:00 AM: In salary cap news, we just posted a story on Browns WR Donovan Peoples-Jones, TE Harrison Bryant, and DT Jordan Elliott each earning a proven performance escalator (PPE). Check out the article to see why they earned additional money in their base salary for 2023, but a player like S Grant Delpit — taken in the same draft class — did not.
9:45 AM: To kick off your morning reading digest, be sure to check out the in-depth pieces that Barry Shuck has already put together about two of the Browns’ key free agent signings: DT Dalvin Tomlinson and S Juan Thornhill. Like, why was Tomlinson nicknamed, “The Renaissance Man?” Or why the Chiefs couldn’t re-sign Thornhill despite his good play.
9:30 AM: A year ago, the Browns acquired QB Deshaun Watson from the Houston Texans, a move that drastically changed the shaping of the franchise, and the results of which are still to be determined. The team shifted from QB Baker Mayfield as their franchise quarterback and went all-in on Watson. To a degree, some of the moves the team didn’t make last offseason (i.e. shoring up the defensive line) could have been because Andrew Berry and company felt that 2023 was the right year to make those type of investments — especially since they had mortgaged many of their top draft assets in the coming years.