Chandler Jones Suggested As Free Agency Target For Browns

Chandler Jones, Browns
NFL Analysis Network

The Cleveland Browns had a disappointing 8-9 campaign in the 2021 season. A lot of their struggles came on the offensive side of the ball, as the defense put together a strong performance all season.

Cleveland ranked fifth in yardage allowed in 2021 as they made things very difficult for opposing offenses to move the ball against them. They were especially stingy through the air, as their strong pass rush created a ton of pressure for opposing quarterbacks.

The Browns had 102 quarterback hits and 43 sacks on the season. Leading that pass rush was First-Team All-Pro and Pro Bowler Myles Garrett, who had 16 sacks and 33 quarterback hits on the season. But, he was able to find so much success because the Browns finally found a bookend for him.

Cleveland took a chance on Jadeveon Clowney in free agency, signing him to a one-year deal after he had a zero sack, injury-riddled season with the Tennessee Titans in 2020. He bounced back in a big way with the Browns, registering nine sacks and 19 quarterback hits on the season.

Showing that he has plenty of pass-rushing juice remaining, Clowney will be looking to cash in on free agency this offseason. The Browns would love to keep him, but if another team swoops in, they will have to look elsewhere for pass-rushing help.

Jared K. Mueller of Browns Wire believes they can find that help in the form of Chandler Jones. The Arizona Cardinals’ all-time sack leader is hitting free agency this year as well and would make for an excellent replacement for Clowney should the need arise.

Jones is arguably the best defensive player on the market in free agency. He had a great 2021 season, piling up 10.5 sacks and bouncing back after an injury-riddled 2020 in which he appeared in five games and only had one sack.

There will be a lot of competition to sign him, so the Browns have to figure out what they are doing with Clowney as soon as possible. If Clowney does decide to move on, Jones is where Cleveland could turn its attention toward.

After seeing how successful the pass rush was with a competent bookend opposite of Garrett, the front office has to make sure they provide that kind of support once again. Unless some major changes are made offensively, it will be the defense that is relied upon to help the team win games next season.