The defensive side of the football was the biggest culprit in the Cleveland Browns‘ 7-10 finish and failure to make the playoffs, and particularly problematic was their inability to stop the run.
They finished 25th in rushing yards allowed and 29th in rushing touchdowns allowed, and reinforcement on their front seven will be needed to help ensure they return to the playoffs next season.
To that end, NFL Insider Benjamin Allbright recently reported that the Browns are interested in Denver Broncos defensive end Dre’Mont Jones.
— Benjamin Allbright (@AllbrightNFL) March 11, 2023
Jones had a strong 2022 season with 6.5 sacks, 10 quarterback hits and nine tackles for loss for a Broncos defense that was 10th in rushing yards and touchdowns given up this past season.
Finding a new defensive end opposite four-time Pro Bowler Myles Garrett is a big priority for the Browns this offseason.
They had Jadeveon Clowney fill that role the past two seasons, but he is expected to leave via free agency, and his production fell in 2022 from nine sacks the year before to just two sacks.
Jones just turned 26 years of age, which means if the Browns manage to snag him, he could be a part of their core for years to come.
There were times last season when they simply couldn’t stop teams from gaining significant yardage time and again on the ground.
They gave up at least 200 rushing yards in a game nine times in 2022 and at least 300 rushing yards twice.
Shoring up the defensive side of the ball would go a long way in helping to get the long-struggling franchise back to the playoffs.