I thought it’d be easy to come up with 24 “good” defensive players. So, we’re going to just look at “good” as the most subjective word in the history of the English language for the sake of this exercise.
DT Ahtyba Rubin
He’s not the flashiest player or had the greatest stats, but he played for the team for a good five seasons this decade (seven overall), which is more than most can say.
DT Phil Taylor
Eh. Ran out of picks.
DT Danny Shelton
A viable starter, but first-round picks should be impact players.
DE Emmanuel Ogbah
He was a viable piece in the Chiefs SuperBowl win, after being a constant starter for the Browns.
DE Myles Garrett
Right now the best defensive player the Browns have had on the line in decades.
DE Carl Nassib
Carl Nassib was under-appreciated in his time in Cleveland. A stint in Tampa made him an important free agent for 2019.
DT Jamie Meder
A local kid who made it in the NFL after coming out of Division III Ashland University.
DT Larry Ogunjobi
He wasn’t bad.
DE Jabaal Sheard
He had 14 sacks in two seasons. So that’s something.
LB D’Qwell Jackson
A genuine great player in Cleveland Browns’ history, too bad he rarely got a team around him to showcase what he could do.
LB Paul Kruger
A misfire signing but Paul Kruger did have 11 sacks once. So that’s cool.
LB Karlos Dansby
Karlos Dansby was a fine signing but he replaced fan-favorite and Pro Bowl player D’Qwell Jackson. He never lived up to his predecessor’s shoes.
LB Jamie Collins
He had two back to back 90 tackles seasons in his year and a half with Cleveland. That’s gotta count for something, otherwise, this team is going to need to carry an extra defensive back.
LB Joe Schobert
A genuine Pro Bowler and a top linebacker in the league, too bad the current management didn’t see it. (Sic Semper Analytics)
LB Christian Kirksey
Like Shobert Christian Kirksey was a great talent before his release, but couldn’t get past the injuries.
LB Mack Wilson
He’s got potential. That’s gotta be good enough at this point…
CB Eric Wright
I swore at him more than any Browns player in recent memory not named Leigh Bodden.
SAF T.J. Ward
A genuine good player, with two Pro Bowls to his name.
CB Joe Haden
The best cornerback this team has seen in decades. He never should have been released.
SAF Tashaun Gipson
Hey, an undrafted Pro Bowler!? How’d that happen?
SAF Dante Whitner
Signed to replace Ward, Donte Whitner did make a Pro Bowl.
CB Jason McCourty
He’s pretty good, won a SuperBowl as a starter. So you can’t just say “naw” to him.
SAF Jabrill Peppers
Yikes, what could’ve been? A young safety with enormous potential and all we got back was an oft-injured diva and an oft-injured overpaid defensive end.
CB Denzel Ward
A Pro Bowler with a bright future.