TheMMQB's Albert Breer shed some light on the structure of the Cleveland Browns structure in his latest column. The front office led by Andrew Berry has taken a similar approach to the Philadelphia Eagles, where Berry spent last season working and learning under Howie Roseman, one of the best general managers in the league.
There’s a method to how the Browns have set up their front office. And it’s rooted in the year that GM Andrew Berry had in Philadelphia. The new structure is, in fact, one reason why so many of the guys Berry worked with previously had to go—former assistant GM Eliot Wolf and VP of player personnel Alonzo Highsmith would have had to take de facto demotions to make it work. As the Eagles have it, the scouting department is set up in two silos. One is headed up by a VP of player personnel (Andy Weidl), the other by a VP of football operations (Berry’s old role). The former basically leads scouting, the latter everything else (analytics, etc.) In that structure, there was no room for an assistant GM like Wolf, and Highsmith likely would’ve had to be re-assigned to allow for Berry to have his own guy as scouting head (remember, Highsmith was hired over the top of Berry by GM John Dorsey). So those guys are gone, and ex-Niners exec Kwesi Adofo-Mensah is in as VP of football ops, with assistant director of pro scouting Glenn Cook promoted to VP of player personnel. So yes, there’s definitely an “analytics” feel to the front office. But the blueprint is actually borrowed from Philly.
It helps to explain first why Eliot Wolf and Alonzo Highsmith didn't fit from a structural point of view, regardless of whatever professional differences they might have had in terms of a vision for the team going forward.
In their place, they have Kwesi Adofo-Mensah overseeing the analytical side as VP of football ops while Glenn Cook is more in charge of the scouting as VP of player personnel.
The key and something they appeared to deal with effectively this offseason is marrying the two. Being able to effectively apply the data to what's on tape as well as the makeup of the player is the key to success in terms of player evaluation.
That's not the only thing Berry will be borrowing from Roseman. When Berry spoke at his introductory press conference, he talked about being aggressive and utilizing multiple avenues to acquire talent.
The Browns already had an extra fourth and fifth round pick added to their stockpile of picks for 2021. Berry was able to add another third round pick in a trade during April's draft. While the Browns could simply use those picks, they are more likely ammunition for trade, using the blueprint the Eagles laid out to trade for corner Darius Slay. They gave him a new contract, but they only had to trade a third and fifth round pick to get him.
With the amount of cap space the Browns appear to be hanging on to in order to roll over for next season, they are a team that could look to add a premium player, likely on defense, trading draft picks. Jamal Adams is one possibility that stands out right now, but if they wait to make a move into next year, there could be a number of other opportunities to add a proven player on top of what they're already building to try to make a run for the Super Bowl.