The Browns should trade for Commanders DE Chase Young and Panthers WR Adam Thielen: Mary Kay Cabot

The Browns should try to trade for former Buckeye Chase Young and Panthers receiver Adam Thielen before today’s 4 p.m. deadline.

Cleveland Browns vs. Washington Commanders, January 1, 2023

After trading pass-rusher Montez Sweat to the Bears, the Commanders are now fielding calls about Young, the No. 2 overall pick in 2020 out of Ohio State, a league source told
Young has battled back from a serious knee injury in 2021, and has already notched five sacks this season, demonstrating that he’s on his way back to the elite level of play that earned him AP Defensive Rookie of the Year honors in 2020 when he had 7.5 sacks.

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The Commanders declined to pick up Young’s fifth-year option in the spring, and are looking to deal him, a source told

He underwent surgery in 2021 to repair a torn ACL and ruptured patella tendon, but appears to be rounding back into form.

The Browns would have to extend Young’s contract soon — possibly in conjuction with the deal — but he’s only 24 and would be a tremendous addition to the Browns defensive line over the next six or seven years.

He’d pair well with Myles Garrett and give the Browns’ a fearsome one-two punch. Garrett has 8.5 sacks this season, but the next highest sacker is Ogbo Okoronkwo with 2.5. Za’Darius Smith has only one, and his contract is up after this season.

Young would also fare well in Jim Schwartz’s attack-minded scheme, and would likely realize his full pass-rush potential.

The Browns have probably already discussed Young with Washington when inquiring about quarterback Jacoby Brissett, who would also be a great pickup as Deshaun Watson’s backup this season.

In addition to Young, the Browns should try to trade for Panthers receiver Adam Thielen, who’s off to a rousing start this season in Carolina, where he signed a three-year contract in the offseason.

But the Panthers are 1-6, and might be willing to recoup a draft pick for rebuilding purposes.

Thielen, 33, spent six seasons in Minnesota with Browns coach Kevin Stefanski, who knows him as well as any coach in the NFL.

The two-time Pro Bowler would provide Watson with the excellent possession receiver he needs when Watson comes back from his strained rotator cuff injury, which could possibly be by Nov. 12 in Baltimore — but no one knows for sure.

In his first season in Carolina after nine in Minnesota, Thielen has 49 catches for 509 yards and four touchdowns.

The Browns, challenged at quarterback this season because of Watson’s injury, have thrown only one touchdown pass to a receiver this season — Amari Cooper.

The other receivers such as Elijah Moore and Donovan Peoples-Jones will fare better when Watson is back to himself, but another weapon could help get the Browns into the playoffs this season.

Broncos receiver Jerry Jeudy has also been on the Browns’ radar — they were interested in trading for him in March before they picked up Moore — but a league source told on Monday that the Broncos, who beat the Chiefs on Sunday, aren’t planning to deal Jeudy today.

The Browns have kicked the tires on several other receivers in recent days, but Thielen would make a lot of sense.

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