11:30PM UPDATE EXCLUSIVE:Word has reached us at Bernie's Insiders that the fifth name on the list is NOT Orpheus Roye, but Brant Boyer. Developing...
BREAKING THIS EVENING: Multiple sources are reporting at this hour that the Cleveland Browns have made DL Orpheus Roye, CB Corey Fuller, OT Roman Oben, DB Lamar Chapman, and OL Jeremy McKinney available to the Houston Texans.
If the reports are true - and they certainly tie to rumors which have been circulating - the Browns have followed the seemingly standard practices of teams making players available. Young, high potential players are kept off the list, and older, expensive veterans are made available.
Roman Oben's availability would be no surprise, since opinion (seemingly shared between fans and front office) is that Oben is overpaid for his production. Ross Verba's opportunity to start at tackle late in the season confirmed that the new Browns regime wasn't taken with Oben.
Orpheus Roye is another 2000 free agent signing that the team feels the Texans may avoid, a sure sign that the club feels he may not be worth the price of his contract. Although Davis has praised Roye during the season, the Browns are relatively deep on the defensive line and may consider Roye a luxury considering the cap.
Corey Fuller is likely the biggest surprise on the list to many observers. Although buzz surrounding Fuller for two years has had the team reconsidering the size of his deal, and possibly hoping for a renegotiation to open more cap room, the Browns now find themselves relatively deep in young, high potential corners. The emergence of Anthony Henry and the return of the highly-regarded Lewis Sanders means that the team feels that it might be able to absorb the unlikely loss of Fuller.
As always, Butch Davis has shown that no one is absolutely safe on a Browns team he is molding in his image. For more information on who other teams are making available, surf to this page on ESPN.