The Cleveland Browns have raided the open market with one prime goal: fix their leaky offensive line.
NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported Thursday that the team is signing free-agent guard Kevin Zeitler to a massive contract that will pay the former Bengals mauler $60 million over five years, making him the highest-paid guard in the NFL. Zeitler will also earn $31.5 million in guarantees.
With future Hall of Famer Joe Thomas anchoring left tackle, Cleveland can now line up Bitonio at left guard, Tretter at the pivot and Zeitler at right guard. The right tackle slot would invite a battle between Cameron Erving, Shon Coleman, Austin Pasztor and perhaps Spencer Drango.
It’s a pure bonus that Cleveland pulled Zeitler away from the division-rival Bengals.
With a mountain of cap money, the Browns are using their resources to grow stronger up front. It’s a wise move for a team that hasn’t had a quarterback play 16 games in a season since Tim Couch pulled off the feat way back in 2001.