If the Cleveland Browns are smart, then All-Pro safety T.J. Ward will not hit the NFL‘s free agent market on March 11th. However, Cleveland’s front office is a complete mess and the Browns have forced us all expect the unexpected with this franchise. Even still, Ward’s representatives have reportedly had talks with Cleveland general manager Ray Farmer as recent as this week about signing a long-term extension.
Farmer has plenty to focus on this offseason — like drafting a starting quarterback — yet Ward is a player that simply can’t be overlooked. This hard-hitting safety is a downright menace over the middle of the field and has shown zero signs of slowing down. Furthermore, the 27-year-old is going to be a highly-touted free agent if the Browns allow Ward to get to that point.
The Chicago Bears are just one franchise that would be interested in Ward as the Windy City’s secondary was historically atrocious. After watching the Seattle Seahawks cruise to a Super Bowl XLVIII title, it’s becoming more obvious to NFL general managers that secondary play really is key to building a winner. Therefore, don’t be surprised if Ward either re-signs a massive contract with Cleveland, or when the young safety cashes an enormous check on the open market from one of the NFL’s more desperate clubs.