#1 – LB Joe Schobert
If you’ve read these types of posts, you shouldn’t be surprised. Here’s the truth about Joe Schobert, he’s a great tackler at the point of contact. He struggled the second half of last year because the team didn’t have any pressure from the front four. Pressure is important so linebackers aren’t dealing with huge hulking offensive guards all game. Something Schobert was faced with consistently after Myles Garrett got suspended. The team also played a two linebacker defense nearly ninety percent of the time, forcing Schobert to play out of position a lot of the games.
Schobert, however, showed he was amazing in the pass defense. With the team moving to a defense similar to the Cover 2, where the front four have the onus of pushing the pressure all game, you need three linebackers who can play the flats and center of the field. Schobert, either inside or out, can be that type of linebacker. If you upgrade the front four and add some depth to it, the issues with tackling that the team had last year should be largely taken care of with a few roster additions.
Schobert will also be helped out by having a third linebacker on the field with him. If the Browns stick with Christian Kirksey and Mack Wilson at the other linebacker spots, the team should have all the tackling you could ask for at the linebacker level.
For those deadset on letting him walk, you’re just wrong. There isn’t a better option available to replace him, and if you have to pay him an extra million or two to get him back, then do it. He’s literally the perfect linebacker for the team’s new defense and you won’t be able to get anywhere close to the talent back if you were to let him go and look at free agency or the draft to fill his spot.