The Cleveland Browns hosted free-agent linebacker Jadeveon Clowney on Wednesday. The team has been pursuing Clowney for a couple of years and were in a race to sign the former number one overall pick last season before he decided to join the Tennessee Titans on a one-year deal.
The three-time Pro Bowler played just eight games last season before a left meniscus injury prematurely ended his campaign. The Titans opted to let Clowney walk after just one season with the team.
NFL: What will Jadeveon Clowney bring to the Cleveland Browns?
Due to the team's salary cap situation, Browns general manager Andrew Berry has threaded carefully this offseason and passed on spending big to acquire marquee talent. The Browns, though, have been actively looking for a pass rusher to pair alongside their perennial Defensive Player of the Year candidate Myles Garrett.
The team released defensive end Adrian Clayborn earlier this month, making the need for a pass rusher even more significant ahead of the upcoming season.
Jadeveon Clowney has been on the Browns' wishlist since the 2020 offseason. The Browns offered him a multi-year deal last offseason, but Clowney decided to sign a one-year deal with the Titans. The linebacker had a terrible season, failing to register a single sack in eight games before having a season-ending surgery to fix a meniscus injury.
Clowney has been struggling with injuries for the past two seasons, which is why he is yet to be signed by a team in free agency. The 28-year-old will certainly not be the lead pass rusher on any team in the NFL this season, but with the Browns already employing Garrett, Clowney could thrive in tandem with him.
The linebacker has already shown what he is capable of when paired alongside a dominant defensive end. Playing alongside J.J. Watt, Clowney managed 29 sacks in four seasons with the Houston Texans. Since leaving the team in 2019, Clowney has managed just three sacks in two seasons.
The Browns and Clowney haven't agreed on a deal despite his visit to the team's facility. But with his options limited, the chance to play alongside Garrett and revive his career could be an opportunity too good to pass for the veteran linebacker.