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Much to the dismay of some Browns fans, the front office has been relatively quiet in the free-agent and trade market thus far.
The Browns have yet to make any big, splashy moves and instead have opted for more conservative choices and only a small number of acquisitions in all.
While the grumbling that the Browns need to sign a couple of "bigger-name" type players to be competitive is understandable, I'm of the opinion that their current approach is actually the correct one.
Holmgren and Heckert had their work cut out for them when they inherited this team, and instead of signing as many expensive free agents as possible to build a quick fix that would likely not last long, they've chosen the smarter approach of patiently and slowly building a team from the ground up that should be able to not only succeed, but do so for years to come.
That being said, I do agree that they still have some work to do on the free agent/trade front before we get too much closer to the start of the season.
It's unfortunate that the trade with the Eagles for Brodrick Bunkley fell through, but it appears the Browns made the right decision to pass on him once it was revealed that he came with serious medical concerns. The issue now is that the Browns still need someone to fill that spot. What happened with Bunkley was disappointing, but the Browns need to make sure they find another DT to fill the role he would have taken on now that he's no longer an option.
Safety Usama Young was an excellent pickup. There is a good chance he will start opposite TJ Ward at safety, a spot where the Browns definitely needed help.
Another good move was the trade for Rams G John Greco. Obviously, the right side of the Browns line needed help, and the trade is a good deal for the Browns. They got Greco for a conditional seventh-round pick, contingent on whether or not Greco starts this season. It's a win-win for Cleveland: If he does start, a seventh-round pick isn't a bad price to pay, and if he doesn't, they're not out anything at all.
While I'm part of the camp that agrees with the Browns taking a more conservative approach to bringing in players via free agency and trade this season, they do still need to take things a bit further than they have so far. They could still use some depth on the O-line, some help at DE and DT, possibly a low-end free-agent WR and should be exploring the CB market since Eric Wright is now gone.
And perhaps most urgent, they now need a punter desperately, since Reggie Hodges tore his Achilles at camp today and is now out for the season. For those wondering, Dave Zastudil is not currently an option, as he sustained an oblique injury while trying out for the Texans' practice squad.
I fully expect the Browns to address these and any other needs that come up before the season starts, and if they can nail down a few more small but important moves that fill in the rest of the gaps on the roster, this grade should rise from where it currently sits.