After releasing veteran linebacker D'Qwell Jackson this offseason, the Cleveland Browns have reportedly signed Karlos Dansby.
According to Kent Somers of AZCentral.com, the former Arizona Cardinals linebacker will receive a four-year contract worth $24 million. Dansby will receive $14 million guaranteed and $10 million in the first season:
don't know if this has been out there since twitter broke. hearing Dansby to Browns, 4yrs/$24m. $10m year 1, $14m guaranteed.— Kent Somers (@kentsomers) March 11, 2014
Nothing can be signed until 4 p.m. ET at the earliest, so the terms of the contract aren't yet official. Should it go through, it will have come as a surprise to many Cardinals fans, as Dansby went on record with Sirius XM NFL radio in February to declare that he felt Arizona would be his home for 2014 (via Darren Urban of AZCardinals.com).
Whom would you rather have for 2014?
"I definitely expect to be an Arizona Cardinal next year," Dansby said. "We don’t have long here (before free agency) so we’ll get to talking and try and hammer something out."
Either the Cardinals waited too long, or the Browns offered the 32-year-old a deal too good to turn down.
This signing would come directly after the Browns released Jackson, who subsequently signed with the Indianapolis Colts for four years and $22 million, $11 million of which is guaranteed, according to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport:
D’Qwell Jackson’s deal with the #Colts: 4 years for $22M with $11M guaranteed, per source. Wow.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 6, 2014
Inevitably, many will end up comparing which of the two deals is better for the Browns.
Pete Damilatis of Pro Football Focus felt that Dansby deserved a slightly bigger contract between the two:
More than D'Qwell. Rightfully so. RT @kentsomers hearing Dansby to Browns, 4yrs/$24m. $10m year 1, $14m guaranteed.— Pete Damilatis (@PFF_Pete) March 11, 2014
Nathan Zegura of CBSSports.com also felt Cleveland made the right decision:
If Dansby comes to the @Browns = Upgrade. #3 ILB in coverage per PFF, led ILB's in INTs (4), PD's (10) and was also top 5 in stops (63)— Nathan Zegura (@NathanZegura) March 11, 2014
The Browns have been criticized quite often this offseason with the way they handled the firing of Rob Chudzinski and the subsequent hiring of Mike Pettine. It would seem, though, that the front office has things under control and a definite plan in place.
Dansby is unlikely to be the team's only major addition this offseason, but he is certainly a noteworthy name as free agency gets underway. The Browns had one of the better and more underrated defensive units in 2013, and Dansby will be expected to play at a high level and maintain that progress.