It’s been a busy offseason for the Cleveland Browns to say the least.
Staples like JC Tretter and Jarvis Landry are out the door.
A new franchise quarterback has been brought in with Deshaun Watson.
The moves are far from done, however, as free agency continues with the NFL Draft right around the corner.
Teams like the Browns will continue to fill out their roster and find depth.
Can confirm #Browns agreed to terms with C Ethan Pocic. He was 2nd-round pick of Seattle in 2017, has started 40 games.
— Scott Petrak ct (@ScottPetrak) March 29, 2022
Filling out the Depth Chart
This is probably the least “flashy” move by the Browns this offseason.
Still, it’s an important one.
With JC Tretter being released earlier this month, second-year man Nick Harris is slated to start at center.
However, no one sat behind him on the depth chart until today.
As we’ve seen before, injuries, especially on the offensive line, take their toll throughout the course of a season.
Having good, quality depth is how great teams stay afloat even through injury-riddled times.
Background on Pocic
Pocic is a former LSU Tiger, taken in the second-round of the 2017 Draft by the Seattle Seahawks.
Collegiately, Pocic was a Rimington Trophy (given to the best college football center each year) finalist in 2016 and was first-team All-SEC.
Expectations were high heading into Seattle.
Pocic impressed early, even in a limited role.
His rookie season involved left and right guard, having to fill in for the injured starters.
See, depth is important! The Pro Football Writers of America placed him on their All-Rookie team that season.
Incredible backside cut block by Ethan Pocic! Takes out the defender by driving through his thigh pad. Well done. Opens a HUGE hole for Chris Carson.
— Samuel Gold (@SamuelRGold) December 24, 2018
Ethan Pocic only played 1 series (9 snaps) at center yesterday, but clearly showed that is his most comfortable position. Had 2 high quality pancakes and took a good angle out in space to pick up a LB: pic.twitter.com/PemHEmAL27
— Brandon Thorn (@BrandonThornNFL) August 10, 2018
Unfortunately, that’s as good as it got in Seattle for Pocic.
In 2019, a back injury in October landed Pocic on injured reserve.
He returned briefly in November, only to be back on the IR in December.
2020 was better, but an early ankle sprain in 2021 set back his season from the jump.
Ultimately, Seattle decided to let Pocic walk this offseason.
Coming to Cleveland
Not to try and hype up a backup center signing, but as far as backup centers go, Pocic is an ok option.
Seattle is infamous for offensive line issues though.
Pocic not being able to stick around isn’t a ringing endorsement by any means.
The Browns signed center Ethan Pocic per @Schultz_Report.
🔸 76.0 run-blocking grade in 2021 (11th among centers)
🔸 PFF’s #7 free agent center pic.twitter.com/14jfQvzfMo
— PFF CLE Browns (@PFF_Browns) March 29, 2022
But, even with injuries impacting him in Seattle, Pocic remained available for the most part.
He started 40 games while with the Seahawks and is still just 26-years old.
Some time around a talented offensive line should help Ethan continue to grow.
The versatility is likely part of what attracted the front office to bringing him on-board.
As mentioned, he played both guard spots in Seattle but is a natural center.
As injuries happen, having a guy that can fill multiple roles is a huge plus.
It’s just a one-year deal for Pocic, so no harm and no foul if he never even sniffs the field.
If the offensive line stays healthy, that’s likely what will happen this year anyway.
If guys do go down though, Pocic should be able to step right in.