Report: J.J. Watt seriously considering Browns

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The Browns were one of the first teams to show interest in signing defensive end J.J. Watt after he was released by the Texans last Friday and it appears the interest is mutual.

Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com reports that Watt is “seriously considering” making his way to Cleveland to play for the Browns. Among the reasons that the Browns have caught Watt’s eye is the cap space they have to make a deal with the three-time defensive player of the year as well as a roster he thinks can compete for a Super Bowl.

Serving as a preferred destination for a free agent because of your playoff outlook isn’t something the Browns have much experience with, but Watt’s interest shows how much their success under first-year head coach Kevin Stefanski last season was noticed around the league.

There’s no word on a timeline for Watt to make a decision or if there are talks with the Browns about contract parameters going on at this point.

The Steelers, Titans, Bills, and Packers have also been named as teams with interest in Watt. Their level of interest isn’t clear, but Cabot’s report could lead one or more of them to step up their pursuit if they don’t want to see him playing on the same defensive front as Myles Garrett.

104 responses to “Report: J.J. Watt seriously considering Browns

  1. If JJ Watt picks the Browns over the Buffalo Bills, I wish him the best of luck and hope we get to see the Browns-Bills in the playoffs.

  2. I like the Browns as a contender for the SB, but their cap situation doesn’t appear that flush at present. I read their top 51 is currently at $188 million, on a projected cap of $185 mil.

  3. Until they evolve to a higher level, right now the Browns are a team built to thrive when in a solid position…and isn’t good at working from behind or when at a disadvantage. It starts with Mayfield…too many people rush to judge the future of QBs, especially given that they routinely make steady strides for 10+ seasons, but as of the end of last year Mayfield has only thrived in lower volumes when working with a lot of roll-outs and play action. He has the tools to develop into more, but it might take 1, 2, 3+ seasons before he can reliably drop back and read the field while in a clear passing situation.

  4. That’s a good fit for him. Young talented, well coached team with bright future. Plus.. he can play his brothers twice a year.

  5. Those shiny stones lying on the bottom of a river bed aren’t always gold and JJ Watt will find that to be true if he signs with the Browns hoping for a SuperBowl ring.

  6. Yes, Cleveland makes a lot of sense. They are the home of Cleveland Clinic. They are world renowned as providing the best medical care. So J.J. when he goes on IR again, he is close to the best care possible.

  7. I can see JJ putting a contender over the top. He still has gas in the tank and will be a great veteran presence.

  8. @kayes Have Fun With Juju Sh*t Schuster and Mason Rudolph getting Dawg Pounded by Progressive Insurance Baker Mayflower and his band of straight up DAWGS 🀣

  9. 7 of the Browns 11 wins were within a touchdown. 7 of them. I would say they just as likely could fall to 7-9 next year than make a deep playoff run. They are absolutely, without a doubt, NOT a SB contender. Yes, they are much better than they have been in forever. But making the leap to SB contender? Slow your roll.

  10. Imagine going from one dysfunctional franchise to another. Are you kidding me? It appears Mr. Watt just prefers being a big fish in a small pond. Well those fish aren’t remembered, JJ. Best of luck.

  11. Interesting, going from everyone saying he is wanting to go play with his brothers to exactly the opposite, him going to play against his brothers.

  12. I call serious BS. This was reported by a local yokel from Cleveland. Watt just escaped from dysfunction…why in God’s name would he now with a team who has been nothing but “dysfunction” for the past 20-30 years?!

    Nothing about this makes sense

  13. Watt doesn’t want to play for a choke team like the Packers because he’s smart enough to know they’re not going anywhere.

  14. Watt doesn’t want to play for a choke team like the Packers, Bills or , because he’s smart enough to know they’re not going anywhere.

  15. Watt doesn’t want to play for a choke team like the Packers, Bills or Titans because he’s smart enough to know they’re not going anywhere.

  16. Steelers would make a good story but they’re toast.

    Packers were exposed by Tampa Bay in NFC. Adding Watt isn’t the answer. Having a coach that trusts his 3 time NFL MVP inside the 10 is.

    If Bills address their running game, they could be the team to beat in AFC. If not, just a (very good) pass happy team.

    Browns are on their way up and are young. Sounds like a fit to me.

  17. So they are the only ones who want him? Definitely cant go there for a ring. They wont even make the playoffs next year. Their schedule is tough with a bunch road games against tough opponents. Plus he’d have to play for free because they are over the cap as it sits now.

  18. They need him. Over paid Myles Garrett was a no show the last half of the season. Paper champs can’t get you there.

  19. The Browns are absolutely a SB contender.

    Franchises are jokes and perennial losers – until they’re not. The Browns were play or 2 away from taking out the Chiefs, and probably would have fared better against the Bucs if they made it that far because of the match-ups.

    JJ would be more of a difference-maker on the Bills, though. They need a disruptor and pass rusher on defense, and someone like Watt would take them to the next level.

  20. Look at all the salty Stealer fans mad they’re gonna be competing for the bottom along with Cinci

  21. “You mean, you’re telling me there’s a chance?”

    Not coming to Pittsburgh. Would not want to take away either money or attention to his kid brother who should have been DPOY.

    My guess, Green Bay….”On Wisconsin, on Wisconsin………..”

  22. His best chance to get both money and make the playoffs is probably with the Bills. As an NFCN fan, I’d be fine with him going to the Pack. He’d be fun to watch and then the Pack would not only have to release some high paid defenders but likely wouldn’t have enough money to keep their center or their starting RB.

  23. The Browns should pass. Who wants a guy who’s constantly hurt, on the downside of his career, and disappears in the big games

  24. This is ridiculous. If J.J. Watt is serious about wanting to win a ring, Cleveland is one of the last places he should want to go.

  25. Cleveland here – Miles Garret and J.J. Watt on the same defensive line ! I already have a nickname for them… PAIN AND MISERY.

  26. This is classic Mary Kay Cabot spreading rumors with no real knowledge. Watt’s agent knows how to play the field, and this is a rumor to get Green Bay to make a higher offer.

  27. This is curious because he will be playing against his brothers 2x a year. Other than that, I like the fit. The Browns are absolutely a contender and Watt would add a good veteran presence to the locker room.

  28. they already got a lone wolf prima donna in garrett. defense cant work with both your defensive ends over rushing and leaving giant dog legs open

  29. You can only HOPE I guess Jimmy.
    Reggie DID seem like he was done before his GB Revival.
    But the big question with Watt now is durability and what he has left.

    I don’t think expecting him to produce at his levels of 5 to 7 years ago is realistic.

    Reggie was a beast physically, and truth be told, Watt is breaking down.

  30. A play or two away? I guess if those plays consisted of stopping a score and Mayfield actually showing up. Better against the Bucs? Not so much. I think anybody playing the Bucs that day would have lost. They rose to the occasion as a team.

  31. Really not sure where people are saying the Browns are over the cap – they are 21M under the cap (11th most space).

  32. “top 51 is currently at $188 million, on a projected cap of $185 mil.”
    Browns have a roll over cap space of 30.8 million from 2020 unused cap.

  33. baker could just as easily go back to being baker so we will see. i seriously doubt with the QB talent across the league he gets a ring. Dilfers only happen once in a unicorn blue moon.

  34. He just posted “All gas, No brakes” Only two NFL teams use this phrase… The Jets and the Packers. Hmmmm…

  35. lgw91s says:
    February 16, 2021 at 11:05 am
    I like the Browns as a contender for the SB, but their cap situation doesn’t appear that flush at present. I read their top 51 is currently at $188 million, on a projected cap of $185 mil.

    You read wrong

  36. The JJ apologists are out in force. Watt is so overrated it’s laughable. He’s not even top 10 all time, and maybe not even top 15, but according to a lot of people posting every team in the league should in play for the guy…SMH

  37. Superbowl contender? Lol. I will be surprised if the Browns win their division next year. Their 2020 record was inflated by a cup cake schedule, including the horrendous NFC East and bunch of other teams on their way to a top 10 draft pick. A reality check in 2021 is looming. You play who the schedule gives you, it’s not Cleveland’s fault, but I think people are massively overstating how competitive that team is. A contender would have seized the moment when Mahomes went down in the playoffs and instead the Browns choked.

  38. The Browns will overpay for a guy on the backside of his career that won’t be available for half of their games next season. I say go for it.

  39. I personally think Packers will make sense for him!! A former badger with roots in and around Wisconsin… Morever, Packers lack a strong defense and addition of J.J Watt will make Packers a strong SB contenders…..Just my $0.02….

  40. I personally think Packers will make sense for him!! A former badger with roots in and around Wisconsin… Staying in AFC will make his goal of SB harder to reach with KC, upcoming Bills and Dolphins, Browns & Ravens…Dolphins could get even stronger with already a strong defense and if rumors of Deshaun Watson joining them become true..

    Packers lack a strong defense and addition of J.J Watt will make Packers a strong SB contenders…..Just my $0.02….

  41. lgw91s says:
    February 16, 2021 at 11:05 am
    I like the Browns as a contender for the SB, but their cap situation doesn’t appear that flush at present. I read their top 51 is currently at $188 million, on a projected cap of $185 mil.

    You read wrong

    You read wrong . active cap spending is not the same as cap space. Cleveland has 22 million in cap space in 2021. read ALL the columns in overthecap

  42. there are some clueless readers .. let me outline
    1. Cle way under cap.. whoever the commenters are that say they are close or over.. READ
    2. Cle gave KC all they could handle matter of fact a bad call basically stole the game
    3. The nucleus is young.. one of the youngest and UBER talented
    4. Coaching.. the team has maybe one of the youngest most talented coaches in the bus
    5. JJ opposite of Myles.. no more double teams.. jj could have a career year
    6. Pitt is done they need a total makeover and look like a 6 or 7 win team
    7. Baker leads and players follow.. thats how its always been with him and CLE is no different.
    8. Money.. Jimmy has plenty and is one of the best spenders he does not cheap out
    9. Cle is one of the best football towns to play in.. just like Wisconsin where he is from
    10. his GOOD friend Joe Thomas is also recruiting him here

  43. Cleveland fans are real. They have stuck with the team during very lean times. They deserve JJ.

  44. Last year was a good year for the Browns and the appear headed in the right direction as an organization. Still, as long as Haslett remains the owner, I have every confidence he can find a way to screw it all up.

  45. neverdieeasy says:
    February 16, 2021 at 12:18 pm
    So they are the only ones who want him? Definitely cant go there for a ring. They wont even make the playoffs next year. Their schedule is tough with a bunch road games against tough opponents. Plus he’d have to play for free because they are over the cap as it sits now.

    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”-//β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”-////β€”β€”β€”

    Umm try again dude. The Browns are UNDER THE CAP by $21,673,157. The Browns could very easily pay Watt market rate for his services.

  46. It’s a QB league, and I’ve always thought the best way to help your QB is with a strong defense. Pressure comes when you fall behind early. When your defense shuts everybody down, and hands you great field position, the QB’s job gets much easier. Build the monster!

  47. It’s a QB league, and I’ve always thought the best way to help your QB is with a strong defense. Pressure comes when you fall behind early. When your defense shuts everybody down, and hands you great field position, the QB’s job gets much easier. Build the monster!

  48. Really? Guy’s likely in the last couple years of his career and he would pass up playing for the old favorite team (Packers), playing with his brothers (Steelers), playing for the top AFC contender outside of KC (Buffalo) for cash with the Browns?

    To each their own, but that sounds like going out with a whimper to me.

  49. The biggest difference with the Haslems now compared to when they first bought the team, is that now they put the right people in place and they stay out of the way! Like good owners do. (Hi Jerrah!) And yes the Browns have the money to do it, but I wouldn’t overpay. They still need to lock up Baker, Chubb, and Ward.

  50. As soon as the Pegula’s plane delivers those complimentary buckets of world famous chicken wings, all this speculation as to which team is he choosing will be over.!!

  51. Packers 20 million over the cap
    Steelers 25 million over the cap
    Bills 2 million over the cap
    Titans 3 million over the cap

    Cleveland 21 million UNDER the cap

    Does that make more sense why hes looking at Cleveland?

    The other teams would have to cut at least 2-3 guys just to get enough $ to pay him. Then you still have to find replacements for the players you cut.

  52. Don’t confuse what you want to see with actual analysis, haters. My Brownies are building something and you KNOW THIS.

  53. “patsfan4lifedynasty says:
    February 16, 2021 at 12:53 pm
    Upon hearing this news, Big Ben is contemplating retirement again.”

    There you go again, showing how little you know. Clue for you, junior: JJ has never had a good game against the Steelers. And it is “Roethlisberger” since obviously you had no clue about how to spell it.

    Busted! Again!

  54. It’s always interesting when an impact player at a key position is moving to another team. Some teams are several players away, while a few are only one key player away. The most obvious and most recent is Tom Brady. But Reggie White turned the Packers into a super bowl team, and Deion Sanders put a ring on Steve Young’s finger in San Francisco. J.J. Watt is still performing at a very high level. He could do what Reggie White did 25 years ago. Cleveland is very close, and they have a young QB who’s still getting better. Ditto Buffalo. Pittsburgh and Green Bay are right there, too.

  55. The Browns stink and always will stink. But JJ loves his money and will take the biggest contract.

  56. Browns fans are so delusional. Remind me again what your record is in the past decade? Do you never remember the past? I’ve heard this schtick about how they’ve turned the corner and are real super bowl contenders, what like every other year for the past 10-20 years. Your mouths are always writing checks your team can never cash. What’s the nickname of your stadium again???

  57. Watt is Cleveland sounds like the perfect fit. I’d still put my money on Green Bay, but the Browns line would be scary if they add Watt.

  58. So the Clowns win their first playoff gm this century, and it is the place to go? Ah… I don’t think so.

  59. Browns pitch to JJ Watt

    You’ll do for Cleveland what Reggie White did for Green Bay !

    Welcome to Cleveland JJ !

  60. There is no way he will go to the Browns. Smokescreens… That’s all it is. He will sign with a contender and preferably a big market contender. He has earned the right to choose his next destination. No offense to the Browns, but, no one ever and I mean ever says: “I want to finish my career as a brown and have a chance to win a Super bowl”. It is just absurd.
    Being a Wisconsin guy, he might sign with the Packers and try to win a ring with A-Rod. That’s my prediction and I could be wrong.

  61. Sad the way these agents use the media to mislead the public. JJ is going to a SuperBowl Contender and that is not the Browns ! My money is on Green Bay.

  62. JJ Watt is often injured and has gradually slowed in production. He’s still playing at a good level but obviously not the elite level that once made him NFL DPOY.

  63. You’ll do for Cleveland what Reggie White did for Green Bay !
    =====

    Dream on.

    Reggie racked up enough sacks to become the Packers all-time leader, and won a DPOY award.

    .. wherever he lands, I hope he’s healthy, and he wins. But he’s no Reggie. 5 years ago, maybe.

  64. lgw91s says:
    February 16, 2021 at 11:05 am
    I like the Browns as a contender for the SB, but their cap situation doesn’t appear that flush at present. I read their top 51 is currently at $188 million, on a projected cap of $185 mil.
    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”-
    Dumping OBJ saves $15 million. Tell me about their cap situation again.

  65. A story not about Watt selecting YOUR team, suddenly the Browns suck and Watt is over the hill lol. It’s just the first salvo, relax folks, JJ Watt will be mentioned as interested in your team at some point. Don’t feel slighted.

  66. Packers lack a strong defense and addition of J.J Watt will make Packers a strong SB contenders…..Just my $0.02….
    =====

    The Packer have a strong pass rush. In terms of upgrading the front-7, they would be MUCH better off investing in a middle linebacker… probably 2.

    I want to see Watt in Green Bay, in the worst way. But I really don’t think he’d get them any closer to the Super Bowl.

  67. conormacleod says:
    February 16, 2021 at 12:05 pm
    7 of the Browns 11 wins were within a touchdown. 7 of them. I would say they just as likely could fall to 7-9 next year than make a deep playoff run. They are absolutely, without a doubt, NOT a SB contender. Yes, they are much better than they have been in forever. But making the leap to SB contender? Slow your roll.
    β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”β€”
    During the regular season, the Bucs only had one win against a team that would finish the season over .500… I guess they couldn’t be expected to be contenders either, right? Oh, wait!

  68. conormacleod says:
    February 16, 2021 at 12:05 pm
    7 of the Browns 11 wins were within a touchdown. 7 of them. I would say they just as likely could fall to 7-9 next year than make a deep playoff run. They are absolutely, without a doubt, NOT a SB contender. Yes, they are much better than they have been in forever. But making the leap to SB contender? Slow your roll.

    102 182 Rate This

    ___________________________________________________________________________

    Might want to check your math again. Specifically the score sheet. The only close wins they had were vs the Eagles, Jaguars and Texans (and I might give you the Steelers finale even though it was the Steelers backups vs the Browns Covid backups). The remaining five including that Steelers game they were up by 2 or more scores going into the fourth quarter and just played prevent D giving the other team garbage time points so the final scores were closer than the games actually were. On top of that they played mostly backups in their secondary the entire season and still probably should have beaten Kansas City. Beef up that defense and they’re easily a superbowl contender because they were definitely one with the roster they had in 2020 that was not at full strength.

  69. 7 of the Browns 11 wins were within a touchdown. 7 of them. I would say they just as likely could fall to 7-9 next year than make a deep playoff run. They are absolutely, without a doubt, NOT a SB contender. Yes, they are much better than they have been in forever. But making the leap to SB contender? Slow your roll.

    ____

    8 of the Chiefs wins were less than a TD. Are you saying they arent a SB contender?

  70. Mary Kay Cabot is part of the Browns PR Dept. what she writes has no credibility. Her job is to make the Browns look good not do actual reporting.

  71. JJ Watt wanting to sign with the Browns is patently unfair to the Steelers. This is another example of how the NFL is working against Pittsburgh. waaah wah wah….

  72. People thought Reggie White to Green Bay was weird, but he did get a ring with them a few years down the road.

  73. Hey, I’m a Browns fan, and I don’t know that I’m ready to pencil them in for the SB yet. The team’s play was sort of seat-of-our-pants at times, and we had a lot of issues late with COVID (and Garrett was clearly not himself after coming back from COVID), but we still did what we did. We will be stronger this coming season.

    Baker’s numbers weren’t spectacular by any means, but he took much better care of the ball down the stretch. That’s him showing a big improvement and not trying to do everything himself.

    I wouldn’t mind if they traded OBJ, and we do need defensive help. I don’t know if Watt really wants to play in Cleveland, but as long as we don’t overpay I say go for it. He’s more of a role player at this point and they shouldn’t expect him to be in on every down.

  74. “Watt doesn’t want to play for a choke team like the Packers because he’s smart enough to know they’re not going anywhere.”

    He knows the Packers are up against the cap and probably cant afford his 8-10 million a year salary so he is looking elsewhere for the money.if sentimentality came to bear in his decision he would be a Packer.The Packers not going anywhere?you must mean the Super Bowl because the NFC Championship game is a well within their grasp once again.

  75. People thought Reggie White to Green Bay was weird, but he did get a ring with them a few years down the road.
    =====

    He was the final piece of that puzzle. It took a couple years though. Dallas just owned them. If Jimmy and Jerrah had been able to coexist, I’m still not convinced the Packers would have beat them.

    It often gets lost that Green Bay made the best financial offer. And there was no free agent in history, before or after, that teams have lusted after like that. To beat out the 9ers at that point of time?! Still blows my mind.

  76. He knows the Packers are up against the cap and probably cant afford his 8-10 million a year salary so he is looking elsewhere for the money.
    =====

    If the Packers want to clear space for Watt, they will.

    They could free up nearly $22mil with Rodgers signature alone.

  77. Imagine forcing your way out of a team because you find it dysfunctional only to be interested in the Browns. That’s like trading in your Civic for a Corolla.

  78. The Browns, please. If JJ Watt actually signs with them, he’s more interested in getting richer than he is in winning a Super Bowl. But as previous posters have pointed out, this is probably a ploy by his agent to up the price.

  79. cancerman2020 says:
    February 16, 2021 at 7:00 pm

    7 of the Browns 11 wins were within a touchdown. 7 of them. I would say they just as likely could fall to 7-9 next year than make a deep playoff run. They are absolutely, without a doubt, NOT a SB contender. Yes, they are much better than they have been in forever. But making the leap to SB contender? Slow your roll.

    ____

    8 of the Chiefs wins were less than a TD. Are you saying they arent a SB contender?
    ***********
    There is a huge difference between these two franchises.

    Overall Point differential 2020:

    Chiefs: +101
    Browns: -11

  80. I think the Bills have a good chance. They have the Executive of the Year and should have had the Coach of the Year too, plus he can play DE, DT or redzone TE for the Bills, and did I mention the coach is a defensive background coach? I they land JJ, they can purge any other paperweights and concentrate on Offense in the draft, like OT, OG & RB…

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