3 Players Who Won't Be on the Browns Roster Next Season

Olivier Vernon is one of three Cleveland Browns who won't be on the roster in 2021.
Olivier Vernon is one of three Cleveland Browns who won't be on the roster in 2021. / Jason Miller/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns are coming off their best season in decades. Under first-year head coach Kevin Stefanski, the Browns went 11-5, posting their best season since 1994. Still, the team has much bigger fish to fry as the Browns look to improve upon an exit in the Divisional Round.

This team has some real holes, namely on the defensive side of the ball, it will need to address in order to reload for a run in 2021. But those moves will almost certainly come at a cost.

With that in mind, here are three Browns that won't be on the roster in 2021.

3. David Njoku, TE

David Njoku requested a trade prior to the season but his wish was never granted. He's got no dead money remaining on his deal which means Cleveland can trade him without incurring a penalty. With a high-priced TE in Austin Hooper and promising rookie Harrison Bryant locked up for the foreseeable future, a trade makes a ton of sense. Dealing Njoku, who has shown more than enough flashes to fetch a sizable return, would save Cleveland $6 million in 2021. This team has too many holes on defense to justify carrying Njoku and allocating that many resources to the TE position.

2. Odell Beckham Jr., WR

Of all the names on this list, Odell Beckham Jr. feels like the least likely to actually get moved. He has a dead cap hit of $12 million, which certainly throws a wrench into any potential trade. But that doesn't mean he's a lock to return. For one, he carries the largest cap hit on the team next season. And though injuries were surely the primary culprit, his production in Cleveland has not matched that contract. In fact, Baker Mayfield's numbers are actually better without OBJ, though whether that's a fluke or a sign of something real is definitely up for debate. Still, the Beckham-Tom Brady rumor is beginning to circulate again, as it seems to every offseason. Given the injury and Mayfield's performance without his stud wideout, it wouldn't be that shocking to see OBJ traded.

1. Olivier Vernon, DE

Olivier Vernon had an excellent season in 2020, recording his highest sack total (9.0) since his breakout 2013 campaign. He managed that in just 14 appearances, but his season ultimately ended when he ruptured his Achilles in Week 17. That means he'll be a 30-year-old DE coming off one of the most devastating injuries one can endure. That's not ideal for an impending free agent. Cleveland is likely going to let Vernon walk in free agency.

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Max Staley is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Max Staley also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username mstaley1212. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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