Originally posted on Fox Sports Ohio  |  Last updated 3/8/13
At this point its all immaterial. The Browns have 45 million in salary cap room and they either cant, wont or were told not to expend any of it on a veteran leader. Onward. Where will the money go? Well some will go to a kicker. And a punter to replace Reggie Hodges. Need would point to a cornerback opposite Joe Haden and three-four outside linebackers. Lots of rumors have the Browns interested in Baltimore outside pass rusher Paul Kruger. The rumors make sense, given its a need and it would weaken a division rival. The name of Detroit defensive end Cliff Avril has surfaced, but Avril is a four-three end and the Browns are playing a three-four system. The team wants to bring in a quarterback to compete with Brandon Weeden, but the trade of Alex Smith to Kansas City and the Dolphins re-signing of Matt Moore leaves the free agent choices slim, at best, with guys like Chase Daniel or Brian Hoyer (a restricted free agent) or Jason Campbell among the better options. Which pretty much indicates the rumored trade for Ryan Mallett of New England wont go away any time soon. How the Browns operate in free agency will be fascinating to watch, and will provide a blueprint for the Jimmy Haslam-Joe Banner era. Clevelands glut of cap space has most predicting they will spend lavishly. That has rarely worked in Cleveland, or elsewhere, but the fact it doesnt work never stops teams from doing it. Conversely, new owner Jimmy Haslam has downplayed a spending splurge, stating over and over again that the team will build through the draft. Its a logical approach that has been proven in places like Pittsburgh and Baltimore and most recently Cincinnati. Free agency and the draft always prove to be the most exciting and interesting time of the year for Browns fans. Which unfortunately sums up their reality as the NFL news cycle marches on. Late night discussions begin at midnight.
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