In one of the more underdiscussed story lines of the offseason, the Cleveland Browns have picked up their fifth-year option on big defensive tackle Phil Taylor.
#Browns have exercised the option on Phil Taylor's contract for the fifth year, source said.
— Mary Kay Cabot (@MaryKayCabot) May 2, 2014
Taylor started 15 games in 2013, but only played 555 snaps as a two-down player used to impede the opposing running game. The switch to Mike Pettine as head coach will bring a different “hybrid” defensive scheme to the Browns, one that could ultimately bring Taylor more playing time. The team, however, has considerable depth at defensive line and may continue to rotate players given their luxury.
“Phil’s explosive,” Pettine said on Thursday. “He’s got some pass rush ability, yet he’s solid enough to be at the point of attack. Absolutely, he’s a fit for us.”
“I am humbled and honored that the Browns exercised the fifth-year option on my contract,” said Taylor. “I truly hope to be in Cleveland my entire career and to be part of the team that turns this franchise back into a perennial winner and championship contender, and restores the luster of the Dawg Pound!”
Taylor will have made $8 million through his first four years with the Browns. The 2011 first-round pick will now make $5.5 million in Year 5, becoming an unrestricted free agent in 2016. The Browns had until May 3 to pick up the option.
(Photo via Candice Vlcek/WFNY)