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Browns’ Jadeveon Clowney open to new signing; Myles Garrett wants this

By on December 31, 2021 0

Jadeveon Clowney has rejected the Browns’ courtship display during the 2020 offseason, but the defensive end signed with them last April and ended up loving his experience with the franchise.

Clowney told Zoom on Friday that he was open to re-signing with the Browns, but contract extension talks have yet to take place.

When asked if he would like to return to Cleveland, Clowney replied, “I would, but we haven’t talked about anything yet. I’m still finishing the season. There are a lot of guys on this team. who to come back or not know what’s going to happen in the future, but right now it’s just about the next game and trying to get through the season and do what I can do for the team right now.”

Clowney and the Browns (7-8) are focused on preparing for their essential game against the Pittsburgh Steelers (7-7-1) during “Monday Night Football” at Heinz Field.

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FILE - In this file photo from June 17, 2021, Cleveland Browns defensive linemen Jadeveon Clowney, right, and Myles Garrett watch during NFL football practice in Berea, Ohio.  The Browns will have at least seven new starters in defense - maybe more depending on which package they're in - when the season kicks off Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs in Arrowhead.  (AP Photo / David Dermer, on file)

When the time is right, however, All-Pro defensive end Myles Garrett has said he will try to convince Clowney to stay.

“I’ll try, but you never know,” Garrett said via Zoom. “Guys have their own schedules and want to be in certain places. I can’t help it if a guy wants to be in Miami, he likes the weather there more, he likes being by the water.

“At the end of the day, I want this team to stay together. I want the defense to stay together. I think we have a great future ahead of us, and I’ll do my best when I talk to them about after the season, but for now, the season is not over, so I am not making a pitch yet.

A three-time selection to the Pro Bowl, Clowney signed a one-year contract with the Browns worth up to $ 10 million with incentives. He is expected to become an unrestricted free agent on March 16.

Considering how Browns general manager Andrew Berry has pursued Clowney in back-to-back offseason and how No. 1 pick in 2014 NFL Draft has played this season, it should come as a surprise that Cleveland pushes hard to keep the veteran.

“For me it’s really about being comfortable and being in a good situation and trying to win games,” said Clowney. “It’s about winning. I can play anywhere I think. I’ve been in so many systems so far in my career and I’ve had fun playing this game, so I’m just trying. to see what’s going to happen. “

Jadeveon Clowney walks the field before the Browns meet the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, Oct.31, 2021 in Cleveland.  (AP Photo / Ron Schwane)

Clowney resisted joining the Browns in 2020 as they came out of a 6-10 record and ultimately signed a one-year, $ 13 million contract with the Tennessee Titans. A graduate of Walsh Jesuit High School, Titans coach Mike Vrabel previously worked with Clowney as the post coach and defensive coordinator of the Houston Texans, who drafted Clowney from the University of South Carolina and the traded five years later to the Seattle Seahawks.

But Clowney said he had great teammates and coaches in Cleveland, had a blast and was happy to be in good health at the end of the season after suffering a litany of injuries. throughout his career. He would even recommend the Browns to free agents in the future.

“I would tell them it’s not always about what’s going on in town, but the guys you play with make a difference to me,” Clowney said. “It doesn’t matter what happens because I spend all my time with my teammates and I feel like they make a difference.

“It was one of the fastest seasons because of the guys I played with. A great group of guys, a fun group, the coaching staff were laid back and everything went pretty well. has been a fast season, one of the fastest in my career. I enjoyed my time, I have enjoyed this year so far. I can’t wait to see what happens next year for me . “

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) throws the ball to non-visible running back Devonta Freeman as Cleveland Browns defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (90) applies pressure during the first half of a game Football tournament, Sunday, November 28, 2021, in Baltimore.  (AP Photo / Gail Burton)

Browns defensive end Jadeveon Clowney says he could barely hold his head up during COVID-19 fight

Clowney has started all 12 games he’s appeared in this season and has 29 tackles with five sacks and two assists defended. He is ranked 44th out of 110 defensemen this season by ProFootballFocus.com.

Clowney, 28, missed a game earlier this season – a 47-42 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 5 – after experiencing knee pain during pre-game warm-ups.

He missed the last two games – a 16-14 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders on December 20 and a 24-22 loss to the Green Bay Packers on Christmas – due to a fight with COVID-19. After testing negative for the virus for a few days, he finally tested positive and was placed on the COVID-19 list on December 19. It activated on Monday.

“The first two days I was really sick,” Clowney said. “I couldn’t barely hold my head up. I said to [athletic] trainers, ‘Something is wrong with me. I don’t know what’s wrong. I tested negative and then on the third day I came back to test again, and that’s when I tested positive.

“My head hurt so much. I had never felt anything like this. So I was like, ‘I don’t know if I can play like this. I don’t know what’s going on. I am tired. depleted of energy. I was just trying to figure out what was happening to my body, so that’s when I tested positive. “

Cleveland Browns defensive end Jadeveon Clowney sacks Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields during the fourth quarter on Sunday, September 26, 2021 in Cleveland, Ohio at FirstEnergy Stadium.  The Browns won the game 26-6.  [Phil Masturzo/ Beacon Journal]

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Clowney was playing long before he contracted COVID-19, so the interruption annoyed him.

“I felt like I was getting into the rhythm, and having to come to a complete stop was frustrating because I felt like I could have helped my team in the games they played,” he said. -he declares. “So that I wasn’t part of it, I felt bad about it. I was just like, ‘I can’t do anything.’ watch them play [the Raiders, I thought], “I could have done this piece” or “I would have done it.” It was just hard to watch at home.

Clowney said his “lungs were a little warm” when he started training again, but he was feeling better on Friday than he had been for a while. A healthy Clowney has been essential to the success of the defense this season.

“When it comes to practicing, working hard, listening and what to do, he’s been a great teammate,” said Garrett. “He goes out and does what he needs to do on the training ground, and he brings it to game day. I’m proud of who he’s been and how that D-line has played. We’re just trying. to keep that for the next two games and hopefully a few more. ”

Cleveland Browns defensive end Jadeveon Clowney performs with fans during NFL football training camp Friday, July 30, 2021, in Berea, Ohio.

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The Browns need help making it to the playoffs, but Clowney is optimistic they can get a run.

“Oh sure,” he said. “I believe in our defense. I think we have one of the best defenses in the league. “

Berry rearranged the defense in the last offseason, and Clowney said players need to understand each other, a process delayed by injuries and COVID-19.

“We’re starting to nurture each other and get to know each other,” Clowney said.

Garrett said another key has been defense which determines his strengths and weaknesses.

“We’re living up to that hype right now,” he said, “but it just needs to keep going.”

Maybe the Browns will continue with Clowney beyond this season.

Cleveland Browns' Jadeveon Clowney (90) in action during the second half of an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, November 7, 2021, in Cincinnati.  (AP Photo / Aaron Doster)

Nate Ulrich can be contacted at [email protected].