The Fast Lane: Free Agent Scoop

The inside scoop on the Browns flurry of activity around available free agents. Who they're talking to, and who they're not talking to... all here, right now.


  • Early in the free agency discussion process, we’re learning the organization has tried to keep their discussion out of the media. The Browns seek players that want to play in CLE for the right reasons.

  • The Browns briefly checked in on WR Randall Cobb (GB) and DT Ndamukong Suh (DET) and were led to believe Cobb was staying in GB and Suh has already has his destination picked.

  • The Browns expect to know their position going forward at WR, DE/OLB and possibly NT before FA officially begins Tuesday at 4:00 pm

  • While the Browns have contacted/talked to numerous agents, the Browns have a list of players readied for the next wave, which could occur no later than mid-week.

  • Agents/players finding discussions with GM Ray Farmer and HC Mike Pettine enlightening and not dismissive.


  • All eyes were expected to be peeled to the Browns and FA DE/OLB Jerry Hughes (BUF) as the free agency ‘discussion’ period began Saturday at 12:00. While there has been contact, the explosive move some anticipated hasn’t materialized yet due to Hughes’ continued negotiations with the Bills and the Browns, as well as other teams not priming themselves to be a tool in the process.

  • Due to the number of available pass rusher types, including a visit with DE/OLB Trent Cole (PHI), with whom the Browns have had discussions with leading up to his arrival in CLE on Sunday. Cole had an excellent visit with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before his trip to CLE, but due to discussions with his agent, the Browns are optimistic.

  • The Browns have worked-up summary sheets for many potential FA players of interest to the Browns, including pass rushers Brandon Graham and Pernell McPhee.

  • One player missing thus far from discussion has been Tampa Bay DE Adrian Clayborn. Media speculated the Browne would be all over Clayborn as the process started, but did not materialized on Saturday. Not to say the Browns aren’t going to jump into discussion, but the immediate focus appears tied to Cole as a DE and another OLB pass rushing type presence.


  • Interestingly, one AFC North personnel executive tells the Fast Lane that one team in the division has spoken to the agents for a couple NT/DT types on Saturday – and solidly believes that team to be the Browns.

  • The Browns are not in on NT/DT Terrance Knighton (DEN) at this time.


  • The Browns did not engage in discussions with TE Julius Thomas (DEN).

  • The Browns have had discussions with the agents for TEs Ed Dickson (CAR) and Virgil Green (DEN).

  • Word seeping out the Browns on verge of contacting TE Zach Miller

  • FA TE Jermaine Gresham (CIN) remains a possibility for the Browns, as we reported last week.


  • The Browns have shown interest in RB Shane Vereen (NE). As we noted prior to FA, the Browns seek a RB that can come out of the backfield.


  • The Browns have not discussed QB Jay Cutler (CHI) as a trade option.

  • The Browns have not engaged in discussions with any remaining FA QBs.

  • The Browns have not discussed QB Sam Bradford with the Rams, though the player continues to be sternly against a pay-cut or significant contract restructure in StL.

  • There is a belief going around the league the Philadelphia Eagles will trade up-to number one, no less than number-six to secure QB Marcus Mariota, with QB Nick Foles involved in the deal.


  • The Browns have put it out there that when a WR agrees to terms, other offers are likely off the board – including Brian Hartline.

  • The Browns have had ongoing discussions with the agent for WR Jeremy Maclin (PHI). Discussions with WR Jeremy Maclin moving along well. The Philadelphia Eagles, Houston Texans an unidentified team as well as the Browns remain in play for Maclin.

  • The Browns have had discussions with WR Cecil Shorts (JAX)

  • The Browns have discussed making a move on WR Andre Holmes (OAK)

  • The Browns did discuss WR Brandon Marshall (CHI, now NYJ) prior to his being dealt to the Jets. The Browns had interest, but wanted to open the possibility of reworking his deal for added length of contract and move the dollar value around.


  • The Browns had interest in CB Byron Maxwell (SEA) prior to the player agreeing with the Eagles.


  • The Browns expect DB Tashaun Gipson to wear a Browns uniform for a long time.

  • One team looking at DE/OLB Jabaal Sheard was given a glowing report on Sheard the man and player - best suited to be a DE in a 4–3 or he’d be locked up by the Browns.

  • The Browns haven’t given up on resigning CB Buster Skrine, but the FA has found out exactly what he expected, the market for him would be very good. The Browns remain in play. The Browns willing to let the CB market play out, will remain in contact.

  • The Browns will not resign TE Jordan Cameron.

  • OLB/DE Jabaal Sheard has warranted some interest and is unlikely to return to the Browns.

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