Browns Rumors: OL Joe Haeg to Sign Contract After Raiders Visit amid Conklin Recovery

Mike Chiari@@mikechiariFeatured Columnist IVSeptember 4, 2022

PITTSBURGH, PA - DECEMBER 19:  Joe Haeg #71 of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks on during the game against the Tennessee Titans at Heinz Field on December 19, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Joe Sargent/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns reportedly came to terms on a deal with free-agent offensive lineman Joe Haeg on Sunday.

According to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo, the move comes in the wake of Haeg visiting with the Las Vegas Raiders and gives the Browns some insurance with starting right tackle Jack Conklin continuing to work his way back from knee surgery.

Haeg, 29, is a six-year NFL veteran who was released by the Pittsburgh Steelers last week.

The Indianapolis Colts originally selected Haeg in the fifth round of the 2016 NFL draft out of North Dakota State, and he remained in Indy for four seasons. He then spent 2020 with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and 2021 with the Steelers, winning a Super Bowl in his only season in Tampa.

Despite being a Day 3 draft pick, Haeg was essentially a starter out of the gates, making 14 starts as a rookie in 2016 and 15 starts the following season.

He started a total of just nine games the following three seasons combined, and of the 12 games he was active for with the Steelers last season, he started just two of them.

Haeg has primarily been a right tackle during his NFL career, which is why the Browns signing him can be viewed as a move directly tied to Conklin; however, he has some versatility and is capable of playing guard as well.

When fully healthy, the Browns have one of the best offensive lines in football with Conklin, Jedrick Wills Jr., Joel Bitonio and Wyatt Teller leading the way.

The line has already been compromised to some degree, though, due to center Nick Harris landing on injured reserve and getting replaced by Ethan Pocic.

Cleveland's offensive line play will arguably be more important than ever this season with quarterback Deshaun Watson set to miss the Browns' first 11 games due to suspension.

The Browns figure to lean heavily on the running game with the trio of Nick Chubb, Kareem Hunt and D'Ernest Johnson, plus quarterback Jacoby Brissett will need the best protection possible in order to have a chance to thrive while Watson is out.