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NFL Combine: Browns formal meeting with OLman could be sign of plans for future

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By: Jared Mueller

Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Joel Bitonio can’t be great forever, Wyatt Teller is just a couple years behind

As has been shared with you ad nauseam, the NFL Combine is useful for a lot of things including confirmation of what the tape says about a player, the medical evaluations and the team interviews. One of the taboo things about being media at the Combine is to not ask prospects simply if they have met with a certain team.

For the Cleveland Browns, and the rest of the NFL, they will have meetings with most of the prospects that they have on their board and they could have a chance to draft. The Browns, for example, are unlikely to request or get meetings with the top quarterbacks in the 2024 NFL draft.

The formal interviews are a little bit more important to note but even then they don’t always tell a ton.

In the case of OL Javion Cohen meeting with Cleveland, based on what I’m hearing here at the Combine, we can read a little bit more into it:

The Browns have been spoiled with the play of OL Joel Bitonio for a decade with OL Wyatt Teller joining him a few years later. Unfortunately, NFL bodies break down over time. Bitonio missed games in 2023 for the first time since 2016.

The 33-year-old is set for free agency after the 2025 season but Cleveland could save around $10 million if he is released after this upcoming season. The 30-year-old Teller will be with the team for two more seasons.

That is what makes the Cohen visit most interesting. With the value of offensive linemen continuing to increase and some limited depth with the guard group in this class, Cohen is likely to be drafted no later than the fourth round this year.

For Cleveland, who don’t have a fourth-rounder, Cohen could be in play in the third round. While fans and media focus on immediate needs at receiver and the defensive line, GM Andrew Berry could once again focus on building for the future. Last year, we saw a lot of this in his selections.

Using a third-round pick on Cohen would clearly be about the future but could make more sense if Berry is able to fill some needs in free agency.

How would you feel if the Browns used one of their first two picks on a player that doesn’t address an immediate need?

Originally posted on Dawgs By Nature – All Posts