Cleveland Browns Free Agency 2023

The Cleveland Browns went 7-10 in 2022 but are optimistic heading into next season. Starting QB Deshaun Watson missed 11 games last year due to suspension. Now, he’s ready for his first full season with the team. Here is what you need to know about Cleveland Browns free agency for 2023.

Cleveland Browns 2023 NFL Free Agency Overview

Defensive end Jadeveon Clowney and running back Kareem Hunt are the stand-out names for the Browns 2023 NFL free agents. Hunt played in all 17 games last season scoring four touchdowns. Clowney played in 12 games but had just two sacks. He registered nine in 2021.

Cleveland has center Ethan Pocic to consider. He was initially brought in as a backup. Then, he impressed after a Nick Harris injury in the preseason, and he was thrust into the starting center position. However, given the significant contracts already given to the offensive line in Joel Bitonio, Wyatt Teller, and Jack Conklin, it’s unlikely that the Browns would be able to compete in a bidding war to retain Pocic.

Quarterback Jacoby Brissett played quality football for 11 games. It’s likely he will end up elsewhere and probably won’t re-sign. On defense, CB Greedy Williams might be the odd man out of the secondary and could have to find a new home.

Unrestricted Browns Free Agents

To be an unrestricted free agent, there are a few qualifications. A player must have four or more years of experience in the league. Also, their contract expired at the beginning of the new league year. They can negotiate with any team without any restrictions or draft-choice compensation. Here’s a list of impending free agents for the Browns who are unrestricted.

Quarterbacks

Jacoby Brissett – QB

Running Backs

Kareem Hunt – RB

D’Ernest Johnson – RB

Wide Receivers and Tight Ends

Pharaoh Brown – TE

Jesse James – TE

Centers, Guards, and Tackles

Chris Hubbard – T

Ethan Pocic – C

Defensive Tackles, Defensive Ends, and Edge Rushers

Jadeveon Clowney – DE

Taven Bryan – DT

Stephen Weatherly – DE

Chase Winovich – DE

Linebackers

Deion Jones – ILB

Anthony Walker Jr. – ILB

Jordan Kunaszyk – LB

Sione Takitaki – LB

Cornerbacks and Safeties

Greedy Williams – CB

Ronnie Harrison – S

Special Teams

None

Restricted Free Agents

A restricted free agent is a player who has played for three or fewer accrued seasons and has an expiring contract. The team can assign a tender to the player, which gives them the right to match any offer the player receives from other teams. The team receives draft compensation if the player signs elsewhere.

2023 NFL restricted free agents for the Browns:

A.J. Green – CB (exclusive restricted free agent)

Thomas Graham Jr. – CB (exclusive restricted free agent)

Michael Dunn – T

Chris Odom – DE

Ben Stille – DT (exclusive restricted free agent)

Salary Cap and Roster

The Browns made a splash last season by trading for Deshaun Watson last spring. He comes with a price of a $55 million cap hit. The salary cap for the 2023 NFL season is $224.8 million. Myles Garrett is second on the team at $29.1 million.

GM Andrew Berry plans to get Watson’s contract restructured. This frees up cap space. However, as of now, the Browns have to make moves because their projected cap space is minimal. It’s a crucial offseason including the free agency period and the 2023 NFL Draft.

Browns Free Agency 2023 FAQs

When does free agency begin?

NFL free agency will commence on March 15, 2023. It begins at 4 p.m. eastern time. The date signifies the start of the new league year and the end of all player contracts. Many players are set to hit the market and gain free agency status.

What is an unrestricted free agent?

An unrestricted free agent is a player whose contract has expired, and they have no ties to their former team. Starting on March 15, they are free to negotiate with any team in the league without restrictions.

What is a restricted free agent?

A restricted free agent can be extended what is called a qualifying offer. If offered, they are still allowed to negotiate with other teams around the league. Their current team is allowed to match any offer.

Can teams talk to players before free agency begins?

There is a “legal tampering” period that begins on March 13. Teams can talk to certified agents but no signings can be made until free agency is official.

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Sam hails from Grandville, Michigan. He has a rich sports background, including playing baseball at Central Michigan before covering high school sports and working with the Orlando Magic. He earned his broadcasting/journalism degree from Central Michigan University and was a member of the 2010 MAC Championship baseball team. Sam developed his expertise while working with Betsperts, Bleacher Nation, and 4for4 in various areas such as writing, social media, betting research, and business development. He's a big fan of the NBA, NFL, and MLB, highly interested in data and statistics.

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