football-player football-score football-helmet football-ball Accuracy Arm-Strength Balance Ball-Security Ball-Skills Big-Play-Ability Block-Deconstruction Competitive-Toughness Core-Functional-Strength Decision-Making Discipline Durability Effort-Motor Elusivness Explosiveness Football-IQ Footwork Functional-Athleticism Hand-Counters Hand-Power Hand-Technique Hands Lateral-Mobility Leadership Length Mechanics Mobility Pass-Coverage-Ability Pass-Protection Pass-Sets Passing-Down-Skills Pocket-Manipulation Poise Power-at-POA Progressions RAC-Ability Range Release-Package Release Route-Running Run-Defending Separation Special-Teams-Ability-1 Versatility Vision Zone-Coverage-Skills Anchor-Ability Contact-Balance Man-Coverage-Skills Tackling Lifted Logic Web Design in Kansas City clock location phone email play chevron-down chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up facebook tiktok checkbox checkbox-checked radio radio-selected instagram google plus pinterest twitter youtube send linkedin search arrow-circle bell left-arrow right-arrow tdn-mark filled-play-circle yellow-arrow-circle dark-arrow-circle star cloudy snowy rainy sunny plus minus triangle-down link close drag minus-circle plus-circle pencil premium trash lock simple-trash simple-pencil eye cart
NFL Draft

3 Offensive Free Agents Browns Should Target

  • The Draft Network
  • March 9, 2021
  • Share

Despite a valiant effort in the Cleveland Browns’ first Divisional Round playoff game in almost three decades, Cleveland fell short to the Patrick Mahomes-less Kansas City Chiefs—well, for most of the second half, at least.

Amid the sadness that comes with any playoff loss, the Browns proved they aren’t the Browns of old.

Following Cleveland’s first postseason victory in more than two decades, Kevin Stefanski was honored as Coach of the Year, providing a welcomed breath of fresh air following the Freddie Kitchens experiment. The resurgence of Baker Mayfield’s career paired with a dynamic backfield in Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt has Cleveland primed for another productive year next fall. Odell Beckham Jr. paired with Jarvis Landry will provide one of the top duos out wide (if Beckham remains), and 2020 first-round selection Jedrick Wills has proven to be a stud at left tackle within the NFL’s top-graded passing (86.5) and rushing (81.2) offensive line, per Pro Football Focus.  

Looking toward free agency, Cleveland has cap flexibility, sitting a tad over $20M with free agency just over a week away. With Beckham’s future currently unknown, general manager Andrew Berry has multiple questions to answer regarding the future of his pass-catching group. As it stands, a total of four receivers; Rashard Higgins, Marvin Hall, JoJo Natson, and KhaDarel Hodge are all set to explore the open market, leaving Berry in a precarious spot. 

Here are 3 offensive free agents the Browns should target once March 17 rolls around. 

Curtis Samuel, WR, Carolina Panthers

If the Browns fail to re-sign Higgins and somehow Beckham suits up elsewhere in 2021, Mayfield is going to need someone to throw to other than Landry. It would be Miami all over again for the former Dolphin wideout.

Donovan Peoples-Jones served as the de facto vertical threat for Mayfield within Stefanski’s offense in 2020, but it was a role Stefanski would have liked to have seen filled by Beckham, who succumbed to injury after just seven games.

Samuel not only provides a threat outside, but he’s a Swiss Army knife within an offense, with the ability to take it the distance anytime he touches the rock. In Carolina, Samuel worked at X, in the slot at Y, in the backfield, and in the wildcat in empty formations. He does it all. 

Behind one of the top offensive lines in football, the addition of Samuel would offer an additional threat for Mayfield on quick-hitters and vertical concepts. Samuel thrives with the ball in his hands, and Stefanski’s offense couldn’t represent a more perfect fit as Weapon X. 

Kendrick Bourne, WR, San Francisco 49ers

With a market value of just $6M per year, Bourne would provide a nice addition from the second tier of free-agent wideouts for Berry to explore. Without breaking the bank, his addition would offer the Browns a physical threat on the outside with zero durability concerns to boot, after appearing in 47 of San Francisco’s 48 regular season games over the last three seasons. 

The situation surrounding Beckham reigns supreme here, with everything Cleveland does from a wideout standpoint hinging upon his future as Brown. If he stays, Cleveland could opt to add just one wideout from the class. If he leaves, it opens Pandora’s box into potential moves Berry must make to complement Mayfield, who enters the final year of his rookie deal. 

Pat Elflein, IOL, New York Jets

A former 2017 All-Rookie selection, Elflein’s snap count dropped in 2020 following a thumb injury that found him on injured reserve just weeks into the season. Minnesota eventually released the former Ohio State standout, where New York quickly snatched him off waivers. As a Jet, Elflein started six games. He would be a welcomed addition in Cleveland with Wyatt Teller entering a contract year. No one is saying Elflein will challenge Teller for starters reps, but injuries are a constant reminder of how close a franchise can be to their season falling apart. Depth along the line is always welcomed, and Elflein, a versatile interior blocker with immense talent, could develop into a nice addition for Cleveland.

Filed In

Related Articles

Written By

The Draft Network