clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Could OLB Matt Roth Follow Rob Ryan To The Cowboys?

New, comments

A report by Toni Grossi from the Cleveland Plain Dealer has Browns OLB Matt Roth saying he wouldn't rule out following Rob Ryan to Dallas. Roth was highly complimentary of Rob Ryan:

"I challenge you to [find] one player who wouldn't run through a wall for him," Roth said. "I love playing that style. I know [new coordinator] Dick Jauron's a good coach, but I don't want to have to deal with no nonsense. Just want to come in and play, do my job and have fun. That's a big factor in wherever I go."

The 28-year old Roth expects to leave the Browns because they are installing a 4-3 defense and he prefers to remain in a 3-4. As a 3-4 OLB he is bound to attract a lot of interest from the Chargers, Chiefs, Jets and Patriots, who could all use an upgrade at OLB.

Per Pro Football Focus, Roth racked up four sacks, 10 QB hits and 40 QB pressures in Cleveland last season. For comparison, PFF lists the Cowboys' Anthony Spencer with five sacks, four hits and 28 pressures, but gives Spencer a better overall grade with +11.8 versus Roth's +8.7. Roth rated 11th among all 3-4 OLBs, and he was particularly effective against the run, ranking fifth overall.

Roth would probably not be a significant upgrade as a pass rusher - he has recorded 20 career sacks in seven NFL seasons, including 7.5 in 22 games for Cleveland - but he could provide great depth outside as well good support in the run game.

The Cowboys clearly have more pressing needs to address in free agency than an additional OLB, but at 6-4 and 275 pounds, Roth could be an option to play defensive end. Roth has been described as the Browns' resident tough guy, whose mission on the field is to hit anything in front of him. That's a description I would like to read about every single one of the Cowboys defensive linemen.

The Cowboys salary structure probably prevents them from entering a bidding war with the other 3-4 teams for Roth's services. But still, is this an option the Cowboys should at least consider?