Former Bills Receiver Floated as Free Agent Option for Browns

Cole Beasley

Getty Images Josh Allen of the Buffalo Bills celebrates with Cole Beasley.

The Cleveland Browns need some added depth at wide receiver and veteran free agent pass-catcher Cole Beasley has been floated as an option.

The 33-year-old Beasley remains one of the few proven pass-catchers available in free agency. The Browns being hit hard by injuries at the position, the latest being Jakeem Grant, who is out for the year after suffering what is believed to be a torn Achilles in training camp on Tuesday. Beasley could be an intriguing option for the Browns, who could use a veteran presence behind Amari Cooper and Donovan Peoples-Jones.

Browns insider Mary Kay Cabot of floated the idea of signing Beasley in her latest Q&A column.

“I’ve maintained all along that I think the Browns could use another established veteran receiver in the room, but there aren’t many available. One reliable one I’m intrigued by is Cole Beasley,” Cabot wrote on August 8, prior to the injury to Grant. “The Browns haven’t been interested to this point, but maybe they’ll reconsider after the preseason games depending on how things go. They can also look for one to shake out in the cuts.

Beasley is not a flashy option but would be a reliable set of hands out of the slot. He has notched 550 catches, 5709 yards and 34 touchdowns in his career and was a reliable option for Josh Allen and the Bills the past three seasons. He notched 82 catches in 2020, just missing out on his first 1,000-yard season with 967 yards. He caught 82 balls against last year but registered lower yardage with 693.

Beasley Has Drawn Interest But Waiting for Right Spot

Beasley is still a free agent but it’s not due to lack of interest. NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported in July that there has been “significant interest” in Beasley from teams around the league. He’s simply awaiting the right situation and as an established veteran, Beasley likely isn’t too heartbroken over missing a few weeks of training camp.

Beasley did weigh a return to the Bills after being released in March in a cap-saving move but opted to instead look for a new home. He recently explained his exit from the Bills and why it was time for him to move on.

“I appreciate the fans who supported me. The most fun I’ve ever had playing football in Buffalo,” Beasley tweeted on August 9. “My family and I will never forget the memories. Love all of my teammates there. I won’t regret leaving though. Things changed within the organization. It was time for me to move on.”

This Post was deleted by the Post author. Learn more

Beasley became a polarizing figure due to his vocal opposition of the COVID-19 vaccine and league protocols. He was also fined multiple times for COVID-19 protocol violations. But with the changing landscape of the pandemic and restrictions being less of a talking point, that likely won’t deter teams from taking a shot on him.

Browns ‘Feel Awful’ After Grant’s Injury

The Browns need at the receiver position became even more urgent on Tuesday after Grant went down. Grant established himself as one of the best kick returners in the game over the past two seasons, making a pair of Pro Bowls. He inked a three-year deal with the Browns this offseason and was also set to play a role in the passing game with his blazing speed.

“I really feel awful for Jakeem,” Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski said in a statement. “We’ve witnessed how hard the young man has worked since he got to our team. We all realize injuries are a part of our game, but that doesn’t make it any easier to accept especially for someone that works as hard and carries himself like Jakeem.”

The Browns are also without standout rookie Michael Woods II, who is dealing with a hamstring issue, and fellow rookie David Bell just came off the PUP list with a foot issue. Anthony Schwartz has also dealt with a knee injury in camp and promising undrafted free agent Isaiah Weston was lost for the year and then waived following an ACL injury.

Read More