Montrel Meander

Browns Notes: Kitchens, Monken, Mayfield, Johnson

New Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens hired former Buccaneers offensive coordinator Todd Monken for the same role this offseason, but Monken’s transition has reportedly not gone well, according to Mike Silver of NFL.com (Twitter link). In turn, Kitchens has been forced to play a larger than expected role in “spearheading” Cleveland’s offense, per Silver. Kitchens had already been planning to call offensive plays in 2019, so it’s unclear what the issue regarding Monken might be. Speculatively, it’s possible Monken’s Air Raid background hasn’t meshed well with the offense that Kitchens is installing for the Browns.

Here’s more from Cleveland:

  • More from Silver, who indicates several Browns veterans weren’t pleased quarterback Baker Mayfield publicly criticized running back Duke Johnson, who is still asking for a trade out of Cleveland. Regarding Johnson, Mayfield said (among other things) “you’re either on this train or you’re not, it’s moving.” An unwritten NFL rule typically dictates that players don’t comment on teammates’ contractual situations, and it sounds like Mayfield was made aware of that concept. Per Silver, Mayfield and the Browns players who disagreed with his comments have “hashed things out.”
  • The Browns tried to claim cornerback Montrel Meander off waivers from the Raiders before the Jets beat them to the punch, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com hears (Twitter link). Meander spent most of the 2018 campaign on Cleveland’s practice squad, and will now join former Browns/current Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams in New York.
  • In case you missed it, the Browns last week added a former Raiders executive to their front office.

Minor NFL Transactions: 6/12/19

Today’s minor moves:

Carolina Panthers

Chicago Bears

Kansas City Chiefs

New Orleans Saints

New York Jets

  • Claimed off waivers: CB Montrel Meander

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 6/11/19

Today’s minor moves:

Carolina Panthers

Green Bay Packers

New York Jets

New Orleans Saints

Oakland Raiders

  • Signed: WR Montay Crockett
  • Signed: CB Isaiah Langley
  • Waived: CB Makinton Dorleant
  • Waived: CB Montrel Meander

Washington Redskins

  • Signed: DB Ashton Lampkin
  • Waived: LB DeMarquis Gates

Raiders Place Leon Hall On IR

The Raiders placed cornerback Leon Hall on injured reserve with a back injury. Hall missed the club’s Week 12 game and the ailment is serious enough to rule him out for the rest of the year. 

Hall, 34 in December, was one of several veteran players to join Jon Gruden’s Raiders in the offseason. Hall is no longer the player that he was during his Bengals heyday, but he did serve as a positive force in the locker room and a mentor to rookie nickelback Nick Nelson.

Hall’s season ends after ten games, four of which he started. He recorded 25 total tackles with three passes defensed and one quarterback hit. It remains to be seen whether he’ll try to play again in 2019.

In a corresponding move, the club signed cornerback Montrel Meander off of the Browns’ practice squad. Meander spent the preseason with the Browns and appeared as a safety in their exhibition games. As noted by Pro Football Focus (on Twitter), he was targeted seven times in 48 coverage snaps and allowed one catch for 12 yards with one pass breakup.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 9/3/18

We’ll keep track of today’s practice squad moves here:

Atlanta Falcons

Arizona Cardinals

Baltimore Ravens

  • Signed: DE Christian LaCouture

Chicago Bears

Signed:

Cleveland Browns

Signed:

Dallas Cowboys

Detroit Lions

Denver Broncos

Houston Texans

Indianapolis Colts

Signed:

Los Angeles Chargers

Minnesota Vikings

New England Patriots

New York Jets

Signed:

New York Giants

Oakland Raiders

San Francisco 49ers

  • Signed: OL Zack Golditch

Seattle Seahawks

Signed:

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Signed:

Tennessee Titans

Browns Make Minor Trade With Saints

The Browns have reached the 53-man roster maximum by making a whole lot of cuts and acquiring one player just before the bell.

On Saturday, the Browns announced that they acquired defensive lineman Devaroe Lawrence from the Saints in exchange for a 2019 seventh-round pick. Lawrence, 26 in October, overcame legal trouble as a youngster to achieve his dream of making it to the NFL. Injuries have held him back in the pros, but the Saints stuck by him even after ACL surgery in December of 2016.

We felt he was athletic, explosive and we felt like he could recover,” said Saints coach Sean Payton (via Luke Johnson of The Times-Picayune). “In other words, he was battling an injury and we saw traits that are hard to find sometimes for defensive tackles, and it’s hard to find that position, especially after the draft.”

So, with Lawrence in the fold, the Browns waived the following 19 players to get down to the limit:

Browns Add 13 UDFAs

As the Browns begin their rookie minicamp, they signed 13 undrafted free agents. Here’s the full rundown:

  • Evan Berry, WR (Tennessee)
  • Elijah Campbell, DB (Northern Iowa)
  • Michael Carrizosa, P (San Jose State)
  • Christian Dilauro, OL (Illinois)
  • Daniel Ekuale, DL (Washington State)
  • Micah Hannemann, DB (BYU)
  • Desmond Harrison, OL (West Georgia)
  • Dontrell Hilliard, RB (Tulane)
  • Fred Lauina, OL (Oregon State)
  • Montrel Meander, DB (Grambling State)
  • Da’Mari Scott, WR (Fresno State)
  • Trenton Thompson, DL (Georgia)
  • Derrick Willies, WR (Texas Tech)

Berry is the younger brother of All-Pro Chiefs safety Eric Berry, the No. 5 overall pick in 2010 out of Tennessee. Evan Berry holds the Volunteers’ record for most kickoff-return touchdowns in school history with four. The Browns used just one of their eight draft choices on offensive linemen, so it probably shouldn’t be surprising three of them are on board as UDFAs.

Carrizosa finished in the top five in Division I-FBS punting twice with the Spartans (2015, 2017). Cleveland has punter Britton Colquitt signed through the 2020 season, but it would only cost the team $1.3MM in dead money to release him. Colquitt had a deal in place with the Broncos in 2016 before the franchise cut him for then-rookie seventh-rounder Riley Dixon.