With the NFL trade deadline looming, the Browns were being looked at as a team that would trade away some of the star players such as Joe Thomas and Joe Haden. I don’t think anyone thought that they’d be acquiring talent from contending teams. Think again…
The Browns acquired Pro Bowl linebacker Jamie Collins from the New England Patriots for a compensatory third round selection on Monday. Adam Schefter from ESPN was the first to break the story. This is the second trade the Browns and Patriots have made this season, the first was involving linebacker Barkevious Mingo and a fifth round selection which was done towards the end of training camp.
Jamie Collins is in his fourth season in the NFL and was the Patriots second round pick in the 2013. He has been arguably their best defensive player since joining them and was honored last season with his first trip to the Pro Bowl and voted to the Associated Press All-Pro second team.
He steps onto the Browns roster and is already their best player on the defensive side of the ball. The Browns have been awful on defense all season giving up 30 points a game in five of the eight games played.
Collins at outside linebacker will help set the edge as well be a great coverage linebacker. Pro Football Focus grades him out as the ninth best linebacker in football with a 88.3 overall grade (85.1 against the run, 82 in coverage, 70.2 in pass rush)
Now the Patriots moved him because they were having trouble negotiating a long term deal. The Browns currently have over 50 million dollars in cap space and should be able to get a long term deal done with the 27 year old.
If they can’t get a deal done, they can franchise tag him for the next two seasons. But if Sashi Brown, Paul DePodesta and Hue Jackson want to seriously create a winning organization, locking up Jamie Collins to a long term deal would be a great step in the right direction.