It’s no secret that the Cleveland Browns are looking to upgrade on the defensive side this offseason.
The front office seems serious about adding another pass rusher to play alongside Myles Garrett.
It seems like the organization is ready to pay significant money in order to bring in help.
Prized free agent superstar pass rusher J.J. Watt has officially decided to join the Arizona Cardinals.
That means, every other organization seeking a big-time pass rusher will need to look elsewhere.
There are going to be plenty of options available this offseason, but the Browns could land one of the more underrated players in free agency.
The Hendrickson Experience
In 2017, the New Orleans Saints selected defensive end Trey Hendrickson in the third round.
He was lost in the shuffle because of the fact they drafted so many impact players during that time.
It’s worth noting that Hendrickson wasn’t an underrated player coming into the draft.
He put together outstanding numbers during his time at Florida Atlantic.
Sadly, Hendrickson didn’t see a ton of playing time during his first three years due to the fact that Marcus Davenport was above him on the depth chart.
Coming into 2020, Hendrickson posted 25 tackles, 6.5 sacks, and two fumbles forced through 30 games in New Orleans.
He absolutely blew those stats out of the water when he got his chance to start this season.
— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) November 22, 2020
The Saints knew Hendrickson was talented, but it’s unlikely anyone was ready for him to make this kind of an impact.
In 2020, Hendrickson recorded 25 tackles, 13.5 sacks, and one fumble forced through 15 games.
He put himself on the map and picked the best time to have a breakout season.
Hendrickson set himself up for a significant payday heading into the offseason.
Should Cleveland Sign Hendrickson?
He isn’t going to be the biggest name available, but maybe that’s a good thing for Cleveland.
The Browns still need to upgrade the secondary and at the linebacker spot as well this offseason.
Hendrickson won’t exactly be a cheap option, but he won’t cost as much as some of the Pro Bowl players that are going to be available.
Cleveland should be able to sign Hendrickson to a fairly reasonable deal considering he does only have one impact season under his belt at the professional level.
It seems that Browns fans are warming up to the idea that Hendrickson could be joining the Browns roster this season.
#Browns should be looking for LBs in the draft, get a veteran corner to help Denzel and Greedy, and also go after dudes like Trey Hendrickson or Von Miller. Thank you for your time😌
— Andrew Hartell (@andrew58hartz) March 2, 2021
The biggest concern with Hendrickson is that he doesn’t have a ton of experience as a starter at the professional level.
The 2020 season was his first year as a full-time starter and we all know how that turned out.
Cleveland needs another reliable pass rusher to take some of the pressure away from Garrett.
As mentioned, Hendrickson won’t exactly be cheap, but Cleveland should be able to reach a fair deal with him.
A contract around four years for something like $45-50 million does seem reasonable for a player like Hendrickson.
The 26-year-old is coming off a 13.5-sack season, so it wouldn’t be shocking to see Hendrickson get a deal similar to this during free agency.
The Browns should absolutely sign Hendrickson, assuming his price tag does not increase more than $50 million total.