The Cleveland Browns would be wise to look at these three defensive XFL players this offseason.
The Cleveland Browns still need help on defense. The offseason saw the Browns focus on immediate offensive impacts and potentially long-term defensive impacts. The team will have to start to juggle their finances as Deshaun Watson’s contract matures from $17 million to $63 million from 2023 to the 2024 seasons.
The cuts the teams are going to feel are going to be deep and devastating, which is why our offensive version of this article focused on long-term development and building a cheaper, but the hopefully potent offense for 2024 with XFL players.
The defensive side isn’t in a state where they can plan for the future, as the defense still needs players this year to succeed. So we’re looking at some defensive players from the XFL who can be inexpensive additions for the Browns in 2023.
The Cleveland Browns should sign these three defensive XFL players
LB Jordan Williams
The Cleveland Browns need some depth at linebacker, and while Jordan Williams isn’t the biggest option (5’11, 223 lbs), he could be a significant addition to a linebacking corp that lacks anything in reliable depth. Considering Anthony Walker and Sione Takitaki are going to need time to find their form after catastrophic injuries in 2022, a guy like Williams could be a good player to bridge with. Using him to spell guys, or give guys like Walker and Takitaki some rest or a delayed return. He’s a hound for the ball and tackles everything that moves, so he could easily fill in at middle linebacker, but how well is going to be anyone’s guess.
LB/DE Trent Williams
The Browns need more than just a stable middle linebacker, they need better pass rushers. I’m not sold on Ogbo Okoronkwo and would like to further build a pass-rushing arsenal at every position in the front seven. Williams lead the XFL in sacks at 9.5 and added another 12 tackles-for-a-loss. He can play linebacker or defensive end and would be an ideal situational pass-rusher. At least to start.
DE Delontae Scott
To further round out the defense, the Browns should leap on Delontae Scott, a 6’4, 250 lb defensive end. He lacks Williams’ versatility, but he had 7.5 sacks and 11 tackles-for-a-loss. Depth at defensive end is a big need still, and Scott could probably spell Myles Garrett for a dozen plays a game or so.