CLEVELAND — Editor's note: the video in the player above is from Jan. 20, 2021.
With Super Bowl 55 in the books and the NFL offseason underway, the Cleveland Browns' attention now turns toward how they can improve their roster for the 2021 season.
But while most of the speculation surrounding the Browns has focused on the draft and free agency, the coming weeks could also see Cleveland utilize the trade market to increase its talent.
With that in mind, here are seven players who might make sense for the Browns to target in trades in the weeks and months ahead.
Stephon Gilmore, CB, New England Patriots
Entering the 2021 offseason, the Browns don't have many needs bigger than cornerback and it would be hard to envision them addressing that need with a bigger name than Stephon Gilmore. The 2019 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Gilmore is entering the final season of his contract and doesn't appear poised to sign an extension in New England anytime soon.
While the Patriots were reportedly asking for a first-round pick in exchange for the 30-year-old at the trade deadline, that price could come down with the four-time Pro Bowl selection only having one season left on his contract. With only $7 million due to him in 2021, acquiring Gilmore would hardly be cost-prohibitive -- aside from whatever Cleveland might have to trade in order to do so.
Marshon Lattimore, CB, New Orleans Saints
A Cleveland native who went on to star at Ohio State, Marshon Lattimore has been one of the top cornerbacks in the NFL since entering the league in 2017. The three-time Pro Bowl selection, however, is currently entering the final season of his rookie contract without a long-term extension in place.
Should the Saints -- who enter the 2021 offseason with a crammed salary cap -- find themselves unable to re-sign Lattimore this offseason, it may make sense for them to shop the star cornerback. At 24-years-old, acquiring Lattimore would likely prove more costly than a deal for Gilmore, but would also serve as more of a long-term solution.
Eric Kendricks, LB, Minnesota Vikings
The Browns analytically-driven front office isn't likely to invest heavily at linebacker, but Eric Kendricks is the type of player it could make an exception for. A 2019 All-Pro selection, Kendricks was Pro Football Focus' second-highest ranked linebacker in coverage and third ranked linebacker overall in 2020 and is under contract for the next three seasons at a relatively modest average annual salary compared to other top linebackers in the league.
The bigger question isn't whether Cleveland would be interested in acquiring the UCLA product, but rather, whether he'd be available. It's worth noting, however, that Minnesota enters the 2021 offseason up against the salary cap and may find itself more of a seller than a buyer.
Marcus Davenport, DE, New Orleans Saints
Considering the state of their salary cap, the Saints are going to have some tough decisions to make, which could make some of their young, talented, players, available. Selected in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft, Marcus Davenport is now eligible for a contract extension, which may not be in the cards in New Orleans.
Ranked as PFF's No. 20 edge defender in 2020, Davenport would pair nicely opposite Myles Garrett on the Browns' defensive line. It's not often that talented pass-rushers are made available at such a young age, but the 24-year-old Davenport could prove to be the exception.
Robby Anderson, WR, Carolina Panthers
Robby Anderson is entering the second season of a two-year contract in Carolina and should the Panthers' re-sign Curtis Samuel this offseason, the Temple product could prove to be the odd man out. The Browns, meanwhile, are in desperate need of adding speed to their receiving corps and could be willing to acquire Anderson at his $8 million base salary should Carolina's asking price prove affordable.
Harrison Smith, S, Minnesota Vikings
Acquiring a 33-year-old safety doesn't necessarily fit the Browns' model, but Harrison Smith only has one year remaining on his contract and performed well in 2020, ranking as Pro Football Focus' No. 14 safety for the season.
With Grant Delpit returning from a torn Achilles', Cleveland could stand to add some flexibility and depth to the back end of its secondary. Should the Vikings decide they're willing to part ways with their five-time Pro Bowl safety, Smith could provide just that for the Browns.
Malcom Browns, DT, New Orleans Saints
Like Lattimore and Davenport, Malcom Brown could find himself a casualty of the Saints' current salary cap situation. With just one year remaining on his contract, Cleveland could give the 27-year-old Brown -- who ranked as PFF's No. 34 defensive tackle last season -- an audition at a position where it has both a long-term and immediate need.