Ex-Titans DE Jadeveon Clowney Agrees to Reported 1-Year, $8M Browns Contract

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistApril 14, 2021

Tennessee Titans linebacker Jadeveon Clowney (99) stands on the sideline in the second half of an NFL football game against the Indianapolis Colts Thursday, Nov. 12, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)
Wade Payne/Associated Press

Jadeveon Clowney is on the move again after officially agreeing to a deal with the Cleveland Browns on Wednesday. 

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport first reported the 28-year-old would sign a one-year contract with the Browns. 

Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports added that Clowney's deal is worth $8 million with an additional $2 million in incentives. 

Clowney was a late signing last offseason before coming to terms on a one-year, $12 million contract with the Tennessee Titans in September. The three-time Pro Bowler had the worst season of his career in 2020 with zero sacks in eight starts before being placed on injured reserve in November. 

Originally drafted No. 1 overall by the Houston Texans in 2014, his career has been marred by inconsistency. He looked like a budding star from 2016-18 when he made three consecutive Pro Bowls and registered 24.5 sacks in 45 games. 

After failing to come to terms on a long-term contract with the Texans after the 2018 season, Clowney was traded to the Seattle Seahawks in August 2019. He didn't boost their pass rush, though he did lead the team with 13 quarterback hits and tied for second with seven tackles for loss in 13 games. 

Pro Football Focus ranked Clowney as the No. 31 player in the 2021 free-agent class, noting he finished 19th out of 112 qualified edge-defenders thanks to his ability as a disruptor in the passing game and effectiveness in the running game:

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"Clowney is a good, not great, pass-rusher. He does his best work in the run game, using those elite tools and heavy hands to win at the point of attack. Since entering the league, Clowney is a 95th percentile run defender and a 77th percentile pass-rusher, so his future team should expect similar snap-to-snap production at this point."

Given his age and ability to impact the running game, the USC product is a solid buy-low player for the Browns as they look to make the postseason in 2021. 

Clowney isn't the type of player who can anchor a defensive line, but he does enough things well and still has plenty of upside to be a good addition. 

The Browns are an excellent landing spot for Clowney because he doesn't have to be a focal point in order for the defense to be good in 2021. 

Clowney should also benefit from playing the Olivier Vernon role on Cleveland's defensive line this season. Vernon was acquired by the Browns in March 2019 after a disappointing year with the New York Giants. He struggled in his first year with the team, but he racked up nine sacks in 2020 playing opposite Myles Garrett.

Garrett is going to command so much attention from opposing coaches that it opens up holes for other players on the Browns defensive line to rack up sacks. Clowney's athleticism and run defense will be an asset for the team, but his ability to get after the opposing quarterback will determine his ceiling this season.

The Browns are taking steps to get even better in 2021 after making the playoffs last season. They are in an excellent position to challenge the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens for the AFC North crown.