The Cleveland Browns are coming off of their most successful season in years, as they went an impressive 11-5 in the regular season and won their first playoff game since 1994. A big reason for this improvement was first-year head coach Kevin Stefanski, who came in and was able to finally find some success with the talent Cleveland had on paper. With free agency right around the corner, the Browns have turned their attention to identifying key players they could bring in who would aid in their quest for a Super Bowl. According to Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com, the Browns are specifically eyeing Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Lavonte David and New York Jets wide receiver Breshad Perriman.
The veteran David has spent his entire career with the Buccaneers, and his production hasn't slowed down at age 31. In 2020, he recorded 117 combined tackles, 1.5 sacks, three forced fumbles and 12 tackles for loss. In nine seasons, he failed to record 100 combined tackles just once. He of course played a large role in helping Tampa Bay win Super Bowl LV this year, and is a talented leader who is sure to garner some interest on the open market. Since David has accomplished everything he has with the Buccaneers and is coming off of a Super Bowl win, you would have to imagine he would want to stay in Florida. But with the Bucs having several important free agents to address coupled with the fact that David could fetch a pretty penny on the open market, anything is possible.
As for Perriman, he caught 30 passes for 505 yards and three touchdowns in 12 games played for the Jets this past season. Late in the 2019 season with the Buccaneers, Perriman emerged as one of the most surprising breakout players in the league. In the final five games, he caught 25 passes for 506 yards and five touchdowns, and turned that small stretch into a one-year, $8 million deal with the Jets. Perriman actually spent the 2018 season with the Browns, and he caught 16 passes for 340 yards and two touchdowns in 10 total games played. Perriman is not one of the top free-agent wideouts looking for a new deal this offseason, but he is still someone who is valued by many teams and will receive interest on the open market.
Continuing to improve the defense is going to be pivotal for Cleveland moving forward, and adding more talented weapons for Baker Mayfield to work with is a smart idea as well. CBS NFL writer Bryan DeArdo listed both the linebacker and wide receiver positions as needs the Browns have to address this offseason if they want to build on their 2020 campaign. Check out his piece here.