On June 1st 2017 the Cleveland Browns and the New York Jets completed a traded involving inside linebacker Demario Davis and former first round pick, safety Calvin Pryor. The Jets sent Pryor to the Browns in exchange for Davis.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Jets have been planning to release Pryor since they drafted Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye in the first two rounds of the 2017 NFL draft. That is, however, if they were unable to trade him.
— Drew (@DrewfromJersey) June 1, 2017
The Browns decision to trade Davis isn’t a surprising one. After resigning Jamie Collins at the beginning of the offseason, they just gave their other starting inside linebacker Christian Kirksey a four year extension worth $38 million dollars. Davis was an afterthought and was easily worth moving.
Davis, a 2012 third round pick, is returning home to the Jets. Davis gives the Jets another starting caliber inside linebacker to pair with David Harris and Darron Lee. With Harris being 33 years old and in the last year of his deal, he could be on the roster bubble thanks to the addition of Davis.
Heading into a contract year, Pryor gets a fresh start with the Browns. Pryor could compete for playing time at safety, but more likely is to take over as the “dime linebacker” role in Greg Williams’ 3-4 defense. Pryor could make a similar move Mark Barron did when he was traded from the Buccaneers to the Rams in 2014, when Williams was the defensive coordinator. Barron, like Pyror, was a drafted safety but moved to a “dime linebacker” role to match up against tight ends and play the run in the box.
Overall it’s not a major trade and shouldn’t have a major impact on either team’s 2017 season win total. However, both teams made out well in this trade. The Jets get a younger starter at inside linebacker for a player they were going to releases anyway. The Browns add a former first round pick looking for a fresh start to play a critical role in their new 3-4 defense.