With free agency now set to open tomorrow, a myriad of reports on local television and the internet have begun to surface, indicating players that the Browns are expected to have immediate and extensive interest in.
Local media personalities Tony Rizzo and Tony Grossi both reported on television last night that the Browns are expected to have serious interest in former Redskins linebacker LaVar Arrington. Both cited "league sources" as saying that Phil Savage is expected to make immediate contact with The Poston Brothers, who represent Lavar.
Arrington fell out of favor in Washington last season, and recently accepted a buyout with the team that instantly made him a free agent. Arrington was the #2 selection of the 2000 NFL Draft, and is still just 27 years old. He has struggled with injuries as of late, and has been branded as a "freelance" type player that has a hard time adjusting to the structure of different defensive schemes. I personally look at those criticisms as being a biproduct of playing for five defensive coordinators in the last five years.
Grossi's comments on LaVar came on Les Levine's television show last night. He also reported that the Browns also have interest in San Francisco linebacker Julian Peterson. The other name that keeps popping up as a potential free agent acquisition at linebacker is Will Witherspoon from Carolina. Any of these three players would look excellent lined up with Andra Davis and Chaun Thompson, in what figures to be a mostly revamped Browns linebacking unit.
The Browns are also desperately in need of help on the defensive line. Orpheus Roye was recently resigned, but the Browns have little aside from Roye that they aren't looking to upgrade.
Pat McManamon, the excellent Browns beat writer for the Akron Beacon Journal, reported this morning that his sources have told him that former Broncos defensive end Trevor Pryce is scheduled to visit Cleveland today. Pryce was released, and is not a free agent, so he could be signed immediately if the two parties were to come to an agreement.
The other name that keeps surfacing is Baltimore nose tackle Maake Kemoeatu, who would be a great fit for the middle of the Browns 3-4.