The Browns have officially kicked off the post-June 1 free agent period, announcing today (via Twitter) that they’ve signed defensive back Aaron Berry. The team hosted Berry for a free agent visit back in March, then had him in for an audition more recently.
Berry, who played with current Browns head coach Mike Pettine in 2012 when Pettine was the Jets’ defensive coordinator, missed last season due to an ACL injury, and was never a regular, full-season contributor on defense during his previous stints with the Lions and Jets. Still, when given the chance to start three games and appear in 478 defensive snaps in 2011 in Detroit, he played well, recording 36 tackles and grading as an above-average coverage corner, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required). The 25-year-old figures to compete for a roster spot in Cleveland and perhaps play on special teams if he makes the club.
As I explained last week, we should expect to see an increase in signings after June 1 passes, since a number of teams gained extra cap space as a result of post-June 1 cuts, and free agents are no longer tied to future draft pick compensation.