Much hype has been flying around about the Cleveland Browns in dire need of a tight end. After one of their primary free agent targets Jared Cook flocked to the St.Louis Rams, the Browns quickly pulled the trigger on Gary Barnidge. Who?
Barnidge is an ex-Carolina Panthers tight end that obviously built some rapport with new Browns head coach Rob Chudzinski. This move is nothing more than a fact of life, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. The good ole’ boy network was a major factor in this decision.
So just who is this Barnidge guy anyways and can he be a threat in the Browns’ new vertical offense? At 6’5″ and 250 lbs, the 27-year-old is a six year veteran with very limited experience. Barnidge was a fifth round pick of the Panthers in 2008. He has just 18 career receptions for 320 yards. Panthers quarterback Cam Newton did find Barnidge for a nice 24 yard touchdown a season ago for his only career touchdown.
The most productive season for Barnidge was in 2009, where he was targeted 21 times and caught 12 balls for 242 yards. Much like current Browns tight end Jordan Cameron, Barnidge stands tall and I could be an athletic target for the hopeful Brandon Weeden.
Although, this was a move no one saw coming, it is a relevant move for depth. The Browns most likely will not have Alex Smith or Ben Watson coming back. I still wouldn’t mind a Brandon Myers (the Oakland Raiders Team MVP in 2012) sighting in Berea, OH.
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