The Cleveland Browns have already made some hefty additions to their defensive line through free agency but another name being floated as an option is Frank Clark.
Clark was released by the Kansas Chiefs Chiefs this offseason in a cap-saving move. By parting ways with Clark, the Chiefs saved an estimated $21 million against the salary cap.
Clark is one of the top remaining free agents available and Bleacher Report’s Alex Ballentine has the Browns as one of the top fits for his services.
“The Browns already replaced Jadeveon Clowney with Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, but he’s more of a pure pass-rusher at 6’2″, 253 pounds than a well-rounded defensive end,” Ballentine wrote. “Pairing Clark with him as the bookends to Myles Garrett would give the Browns depth and the ability to put the 6’3″, 272-pound Clark in situations where they might want to go bigger up front.”
Clark has averaged around six sacks per season with the Chiefs, never reaching the heights he did with the Seattle Seahawks, which included a pair of double-digit sack seasons.
However, it was really in the postseason where Clark shined. He’s the third all-time in postseason sacks with 13.5, with five of those coming during Kansas City’s first postseason run.
Browns Have Bulked Up Defensive Line
The Browns have addressed their defensive line heavily through free agency, adding Dalvin Tomlinson and the previously mentioned Okoronkwo as their two key additions. Cleveland also added some depth pieces at defensive tackle in Maurice Hurst and Trysten Hill.
While Myles Garrett was outstanding last season with his second consecutive 16-sack season, the rest of the defensive line was disappointing. Cleveland failed to put pressure on the quarterback consistently and could not stop the run.
Tomlinson — who comes in at 6-foot-3, 325 pounds —should play a big part in helping remedy that.
“As a defensive lineman, I feel like going into each season there is always a lot of pressure to stop the run because if you can’t stop the run, you will never get to pass rush,” Tomlinson said during his introductory press conference. “Just want to come in and help everybody across the whole front so we can be one unit up front to stop the run as much as possible.”
Jim Schwartz Can See Myles Garrett Being Even More Productive
Garrett is the centerpiece of the defense thanks to his impactful pass-rush ability but is also one of the most double-teamed defenders in the league. Having a capable threat on the opposite side — which didn’t always happen last season — will be key for the Browns.
Luckily, he now has veteran defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz on his side. Schwartz has been known for getting the most out of his defensive lineman and can see Garrett being even more productive in his scheme.
“It’s my job to give him some answers and to be able to give him some pieces, scheme-wise and personnel-wise, around him to allow him to be free and more productive,” Schwartz said. “The bar is set really high for a good reason.
“We’re going to work real hard at it, and he’s going to play his part.”
If the Browns were to pursue Clark, it wouldn’t come cheap. Spotrac estimates Clark’s market value at around $12.4 million per year.