Cleveland Browns: Ogbonnia Okoronkwo will be best compliment Myles Garret has seen

Cleveland Browns: Ogbonnia Okoronkwo will be best compliment Myles Garret has seen

Mac Blank
1 year ago
2 min read
Houston Texans' Ogbonnia Okoronkwo celebrates after turnover during game against Cowboys

Going into free agency the Browns front office knew there was a position group that absolutely had to be addressed: the defensive line. In 2022, Cleveland’s defense ranked in the bottom 10 of the league in sacks, total rushing yards allowed and yards per carry allowed. 

To make matters even worse their lone star up front, Myles Garrett, had himself a hell of a season accounting for over half the team’s sacks. All of this didn’t go unnoticed as the Browns added talent like Maurice Hurst, Dalvin Tomlinson, and Ogbo Okoronkwo. 

The signing that seemed to divide most fans was Okoronkwo. At a glance, a 6’1 250lb pass rusher that only had 5 sacks last year doesn’t seem like a big splash but for only starting eight games, his production out massed the Browns second best pass rusher last year Jadeveon Clowney, even though Clowney had roughly 40 more pass rushing snaps.

If we simply take Okorronkwo’s pressure percentage and apply it the amount of pass rushing snaps Clowney had in his best season with Cleveland (422), Ogbo would have 56 pressures. This number is significant since no Browns player not named Myles Garrett had accrued that many QB pressures since Garrett was drafted. 

The projections above are realistic because Okoronkwo will not only get a fully starting opportunity in Cleveland, but he will get the best “looks” he’s ever seen in his whole career. Last year Okorronkwo faced the eighth highest double teamed rate in the NFL. Playing opposite the All-Pro Myles Garrett will force that number to drastically decline, because only a fool would slide their pass protection away from one the league’s best edge rushers. 

Another thing to consider is not just the benefit of the surrounding talent he will be paired with this year, but also how well he will fit in new defensive coordinator’s Jim Schwartz scheme. Ogbo is an undersized edge defender that uses his speed and leverage to go around bigger and slower offensive lineman. 

With Schwartz' Wide 9 scheme, Okoronkwo will get a lot of snaps where he and the offensive tackle are one on one on an “island”. Giving a speed rusher the best angle and a two way go (outside or inside path) will make his job easier and play to his strengths as a player. 

In the end, predictions are purely predictions and we won’t know true results until we see it on the field on Sundays. With that being said, Myles needed additional help rushing the passer this season and with Okoronkwo being added, the short term problem seems to be answered for now. Hopefully, next off season edge rusher won’t be the glaring need it was before NFL free agency began. 

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