The Cleveland Browns continued their Day 3 of the 2018 NFL Draft with their selection in the fifth round. The Browns selected Memphis linebacker Genard Avery with pick No. 150. Avery is a 6-foot-1, 248 pound senior linebacker.
In his four-year career at Memphis, he posted 230 tackles, 44.5 tackles for a loss, 21.5 sacks, three forced fumbles and two interceptions in 45 games. Last season as a senior, he had 80 tackles, 22 tackles for a loss, two forced fumbles and 8.5 sacks in 13 games. His production last season earned him first-team All-American Athletic Conference honors.
So what are the Browns getting in their newest linebacker? NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein had these thoughts about Avery:
Avery is a big, athletic linebacker with a history of production whether he’s playing inside or outside linebacker. While he’s a little tight-hipped, his movement in the open field is generally unencumbered. Avery offers versatility and teams may choose to build on some of the rush talent he showed this season, but his best spot appears to be as a 4-3 strong-side linebacker with plus special teams ability.
Avery looks to be a pick to help add pass rushing ability to the Browns linebacker corps. According to Pro Football Focus, Avery had 50 total quarterback pressures in the 2017 season, which was the most pressures by any FBS inside linebacker last season. The depth of pass rushers on the Cleveland defense is not too deep, so Avery would fit well as a possible third down pass rush specialist. He can also provide depth in the linebacker corps and as a special teams contributor.
Let’s take a look at the highlights of the newest linebacker for the Browns, Genard Avery.
2018 Browns Draft Picks
3rd Round: DE Chad Thomas, Miami (FL)
4th Round: WR Antonio Callaway, Florida