Browns Agree to Trade With Broncos to Bulk Up Offense

Getty New Browns fullback Andy Janovich.

The Cleveland Browns added another piece to their offense on Tuesday, swinging a trade with the Denver Broncos for fullback Andy Janovich.

The Browns are reportedly sending a seventh-round pick in 2021 to the Broncos for Janovich. The trade will become official on Wednesday when the new league year officially begins.

Janovich is entering his fifth NFL season, having spent his entire career previously in Denver. He was taken in the sixth round of the 2016 draft.

Fullback has not been a trendy position in the NFL of late, with many teams shifting away from heavier personnel. However, new Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski utilized a fullback heavily while he was the offensive coordinator in Minnesota. According to Football Outsiders, Vikings fullback C.J. Ham played 359 offensive snaps in 2019, which was second only to San Francisco’s Kyle Jusczcyk (396).

In his career, Janovich has 13 carries for 51 yards and three touchdowns. He can also help as a receiver, catching 22 balls on 28 targets for 233 yards and a touchdown. Janovich will help open holes for a backfield that includes Kareem Hunt and Nick Chubb. He was Pro Football Focus’ second ranked tight end in terms of run blocking.

Janovich Joins Fellow FB Johnny Stanton on Browns Roster

Janovich is the second fullback on the Browns roster. The first move by the Browns news regime of Stefanski and general manager Andrew Berry was to add Johnny Stanton to the reserve/futures list in January.

Stanton was originally picked up by the Vikings as an undrafted free agent in 2018, but was placed on injured reserve during roster cuts. In 2019, the UNLV product spent part of the season as a member of the Vikings’ practice squad.

Earlier in the week, the Browns agreed to terms with offensive tackle Jack Conklin and tight end Austin Hooper. Offensive line is the most notable need for Cleveland this offseason and the team plans to match Hooper — who is now the highest paid TE in football — with former first-round pick David Njoku.

Stefanski Still Deciding on Play-Calling

GettyCleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski.

It’s clear that the Browns are molding the offense to Stefanski’s vision, but who will be calling the plays on game day is still to be determined. At the NFL Combine, Stefanski gave an update on what his though process has been on the issue.

“It’s just something that I don’t think we need to make a decision on right this moment here in February,” Stefanski said. “But I think in fairness to [offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt], I think I need to give him some opportunities to call it in practice, call it in the preseason so that I can get comfortable with him calling it, or I can get comfortable with me calling it, but that’s definitely a fluid situation and Alex understands that.”

The Browns still have some work to do on the offensive line to protect quarterback Baker Mayfield — who’s entering his third NFL season — but the team has potential to possess one of the most explosive units in the league with Janovich and Hooper joining names like Odell Beckham Jr., Jarvis Landry and Nick Chubb.

“Obviously, having the opportunity to put an offense together with the group of guys was very intriguing. Another reason would be the talent that has been acquired here over the years,” Van Pelt said in his introductory press conference. “Obviously, the group is extremely talented, especially on the offensive side of the ball. Having the chance to work with those guys was another part of that. Then coming to the organization, the Browns have a long history as an organization and the city is another reason that I was excited to take the job.”

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