The Cleveland Browns have shown strong Super Bowl contender potential over their first six games of the season. These championship dreams are buoyed by a top-ranked defense, led by new defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, as the offense battles a myriad of injuries.
With Cleveland's health woes continuing into Week 8, it looks it'll be Schwartz's unit primarily leading the team to the playoffs. As a result, it'd be wise for Browns GM Andrew Berry to get this staunch group even more help to ensure a strong finish down the stretch.
One last-minute trade hypothetical from ProFootballFocus' Brad Spielberger accomplishes just that.
Spielberger proposes Cleveland striking a deal with the Tennessee Titans for veteran EDGE Denico Autry. In exchange for the productive pass-rusher and the Titans' 2025 fifth-rounder, the Browns send a 2024 sixth-round pick (via Baltimore) and a 2025 fourth-round pick.
Honestly, Berry should take that deal if it's ever put on the table. Autry has been a consistently great presence off of the edge for years, as he racked up a whopping 42.0 sacks and 78 QB hits from 2017-2022.
Autry has kept his foot on the gas despite entering his 30s as well. He tied his career-high mark with 9.0 sacks in 2021, then followed that up with 8.0 last year. He's off to a hot start in 2023, too, tallying 4.0 sacks and a forced fumble in six games.
Cleveland obviously has plenty of pass-rushing talent already in Myles Garrett, Ogbo Okoronkwo and Za'Darius Smith. However, Smith's been very quiet (1.0 sacks) to begin the year, and Okoronkwo is second on the team in sacks at just 2.5.
Autry could immediately step in not only make life easier for Garrett by taking opponents' attention away from him, but providing legitimate support right alongside him as well.
Autry would also give this defense a strong pass-rusher from inside the tackles considering his size (6-foot-5, 285 pounds), which makes this more than just the Browns quadruple-dipping on another EDGE talent.
Tennessee is already in a selling mood after trading away All-Pro safety Kevin Byard on Monday, so Berry needs to strike while the iron is hot and get this done.
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