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Cleveland Browns to sign ex-Vikings defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson

March 14th, 2023

Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson (94) pressures Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) causing a fumble during their football game on Sunday, January, 1, 2023 at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wis. Wm. Glasheen USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin

It took the Browns until late in the evening of the first day of the negotiating period, but they finally landed a big-ticket defensive tackle.

The Browns will sign former Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson when the new league year opens at 4 p.m. Wednesday. Tomlinson’s deal will be for four years and $57 million, with $27.5 million guaranteed.

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport was the first to report.

Defensive tackle was seen as a massive position of need for the Browns after that position group graded out among the worst in the NFL last season. Outside of Taven Bryan, a 2018 first-round pick of the Jacksonville Jaguars who signed a one-year deal with Cleveland last offseason, the rest of the defensive-tackle rotation all had three years or less in league.

That position group’s struggles played a major role in the Browns’ overall struggles on defense, especially against the run. That led to a change in defensive coordinators, with Joe Woods being fired and Jim Schwartz being hired.

The Browns were thought to be in the mix for the Philadelphia Eagles’ defensive tackle Javon Hargrave, the top of the interior defensive line free-agency class. However, Hargrave reportedly agreed to a four-year, $84-million deal with the San Francisco 49ers.

The other defensive lineman the Browns were known to be interested in was Cleveland native and Ohio State product Dre’Mont Jones, the Denver Broncos’ 3-4 end who ultimately took a three-year, $51-million deal from the Seattle Seahawks.

Once that happened, the Browns turned their attention to the other top defensive tackles on the market. That led them to Tomlinson, the 29-year-old who was a 2017 second-round pick of the New York Giants out of the University of Alabama.

The one concern about Tomlinson is that he’s coming off the first season where injuriues were any kind of issue. He missed four games in the middle of the season due to a calf injury, marking the only time in his career he missed multiple games.

When Tomlinson was healthy, he was one of the top interior defensive linemen in football. Over 13 regular-season games, he made 42 combined tackles with 2.5 sacks, 10 quarterback hits, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery and three tackles for loss.

Tomlinson made four tackles, including a tackle for loss, in the Vikings’ wild-card round loss to his former team, the Giants. It was the only playoff appearance of his career.

The former Crimson Tide defensive lineman played in and started 64 games over his first four seasons with New York. He signed with Minnesota prior to the 2021 season, and has played in 29 games, all starts, with the Vikings.

Over his six-year career, Tomlinson has recorded 288 combined tackles, including 143 solo, with 26 tackles for loss, 13 sacks and 37 quarterback hits. He’s forced two fumbles and recovered a pair as well.

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On Twitter: @ceasterlingABJ

This article originally appeared on Akron Beacon Journal: Cleveland Browns to sign ex-Vikings DT Dalvin Tomlinson

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