CLEVELAND- The Browns are interested in signing Cecil Shorts III. Apparently, there is mutual interest in a deal. Shorts is originally from Cleveland and wants to return home according to a report by ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.
The Jacksonville Jaguars are not expected to re-sign Shorts. He caught 53 passes for 557 yards and one touchdown. He started 12 games last year. Shorts has not played a full NFL season. However, in 2012 he recorded 979 receiving yards and in 2013 he recorded 777 yards. If he plays the full season in 2015, he could gain 800-1,000 receiving yards since he will likely be the number one receiver on the Browns depth chart if the team signs him.
Shorts has battled some injuries in his career. However, it appears the Browns are ready and willing to take the risk that Shorts will suffer another injury which will limit his playing time.
Cleveland also reached out to Ted Ginn’s agent. Ginn was released by the Arizona Cardinals. The Carolina Panthers are also interested in Ginn. He played for Carolina in 2013.
Ginn would be a valuable receiver and can return kickoffs and punts. Special teams was a major weakness for the Browns in 2014, which makes signing Ginn a high priority.
Ginn and Shorts are both from Cleveland. Ginn played for Glenville High School. Shorts played for Collinwood High School.
The Browns will use the come home theme to sign Shorts and Ginn. It worked perfectly for the Browns when they signed Donte Whitner. It also worked for the other sports franchises in Cleveland as the Cavs signed LeBron James in the 2014 NBA offseason and the Indians signed Nick Swisher two years ago.
Is Brian Hartline a possibility?
The Miami Dolphins released Brian Hartline after a disappointing 2014 season. He caught 39 passes for 474 yards and two touchdowns. He recorded 1,083 yards in 2012 and 1,016 yards in 2013.
The Browns may have interest in reuniting the former Ohio State Buckeyes Ginn and Hartline.
Cleveland signed quarterback Josh McCown on Friday. The Browns will likely make a strong effort to provide McCown with much-needed weapons since Josh Gordon is suspended for the entire 2015 season.