Browns Deal Former Starting Defender to Eagles for Pick

Getty Cleveland Browns DE Genard Avery.

It seemed like only a matter of time before the Cleveland Browns parted ways with Genard Avery, and the team finally made a move on Monday, sending the pass-rusher to the Philadelphia Eagles.

The move is for a fourth-round pick in the 2021 draft.

Avery — who made the move to defensive end from linebacker this season in the Browns news scheme — has played just five snaps. However, he’s a proven contributor when he gets on the field.

Avery played all 16 games in 2018, starting five. He made 40 total tackles, notching five tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks, good for fourth on the team. He also forced fumble and was credited with 14 quarterback hits and four passes defended.

With the Browns transitioning to Steve Wilks’ defense that utilizes two linebackers almost exclusively rather than Gregg Williams’ 4-3 look, Avery made the move to defensive end. With Myles Garrett and Olivier Vernon holding down the starting spots, Avery has been supplanted by Chad Thomas and Chris Smith for the backup roles.

Avery was active over Smith during Sunday’s game against the Patriots, but only saw three snaps. He played on 58 percent of the Browns snap last season.

It’s the second move in recent weeks by the Browns, who dealt 2018 second-round pick Austin Corbett to the Rams for a fifth-round pick.


Genard Avery Still an ‘Impact Player’ Browns Coaches Say

GettyFormer Browns defensive end Genard Avery sacks Bengals QB Jeff Driskel during the 2018 season.

There had been whispers of Avery being on the trading block for weeks after he sat as a healthy scratch for the majority of the season.

When asked about Avery, Browns defensive coordinator Steve Wilks showed some support for Avery, despite not putting him on the field.

“I think Genard brings a great skill set,” Wilks said. “He has tremendous speed off the edge, he has ability to get to the quarterback and sometimes effect the game in a positive way. We’ll see exactly what happens this way and who’s up. I’m sure if he is, he’ll make a major impact on the game.”

Avery was active and applied some pressure early against the Patriots. But after that, he was relegated to the sideline.


Eagles Get Depth With Addition of Genard Avery

It’s unknown where the Eagles will decide to play Avery, who has played linebacker but can also put his hand in the ground as a pass rusher. As he sat inactive this season, Avery posted a video of his highlight tape last season — just in case anyone forgot what he could do.

If he’s a defensive end, he’ll play behind starters Brandon Graham and Derek Barnett and reserves Vinny Curry, Josh Sweat, Daeshon Hall and rookie Shareef Miller. The Eagles have a crop of young talent at the end spot, with five players who are 24 years old or younger at the position, including Avery (24).

Philadelphia’s defense ranks No. 16 in sacks this season and has been spotty when it comes to putting consistent pressure on the oppositions quarterback.


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