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Browns add depth to defensive line in free agency signing DE Takkarist McKinley

 Takk McKinley
Posted at 3:58 PM, Mar 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-19 22:29:04-04

BEREA, Ohio — The Cleveland Browns remained in the free agency mix Tuesday as they reached a deal with free agent defensive end Takkarist McKinley.

McKinley agreed to a one-year deal worth a base value of $4 million up to $6 million, reports say.

Selected by the Atlanta Falcons with the No. 26 overall pick of the 2017 NFL Draft, McKinley recorded 79 total tackles, 17.5 sacks, two passes defended, two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery.

While a great addition for depth, McKinley has struggled with injuries and played in just four games with Atlanta before being released.

McKinley was claimed by the Bengals and then the 49ers in November 2020, but was unable to pass physicals due to a lingering groin injury. He was later claimed by the Raiders and placed on injured reserve, and although he was able to practice with the team in December, he was not activated from IR.

If the defensive end can stay healthy in Cleveland, he could likely see a rotational role similar to his former teammate and recently released Browns defensive end Adrian Clayborn.

The Browns have a focus on defense as they look to bolster their weak areas headed into the 2021 season. On Monday, the team signed safety John Johnson, adding big talent to the secondary.

RELATED: Browns strike in free agency, sign former Rams safety John Johnson

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