Cleveland Browns Steal Yet Another Vikings Defender

During the 2023 offseason, the Cleveland Browns were the landing spots for both Za’Darius Smith and Dalvin Tomlinson following the conclusion of their tenures with the Minnesota Vikings.

2024 has brought more of the same. This time around, LB Jordan Hicks is the player to sign with the Cleveland Browns after spending the past two seasons in a Vikings uniform. The signing was reported by Adam Schefter of ESPN, who tweeted, “Former Vikings LB Jordan Hicks is signing a 2-year, $8 million deal with the Browns, per source.”

Jordan Hicks Signs with Cleveland Browns

Cleveland Browns
Oct 2, 2022; London, United Kingdom; Minnesota Vikings linebacker Jordan Hicks (58) during the NFL International Series game at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter van den Berg-USA TODAY Sports

Hicks began his NFL career with the Philadelphia Eagles, who selected him in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft after spending his collegiate years at Texas.

The linebacker would spend his first four seasons in Philadelphia, including their Super Bowl championship in 2017, playing 43 games and making 40 starts. He recorded a grand total of 254 tackles, 12 tackles for loss, 5 sacks, 19 passes defended, and 7 interceptions. Five of those INTs came during 2016.

Following the end of his rookie deal, Hicks signed a four-year deal worth $34 million with the Arizona Cardinals. This is truly where he found his calling as a physical, run-stuffer at the linebacker position. While Arizona terminated his contract following the 2021 season, he started every possible game for Arizona (49) and recorded 384 tackles, 29 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks, 3 forced fumbles, 15 passes defended, and 4 interceptions.

X-Factors for Each Defense
Jan 1, 2023; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Minnesota Vikings linebacker Jordan Hicks (58) gestures after recovering a fumble by Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (not shown) during their game at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Wm. Glasheen-USA TODAY Sports

Hicks then headed to Minnesota in 2022, and while his first season in a Vikings uniform saw a few struggles, he bounced back in a big way in 2023 under the tutelage of Brian Flores. A big reason for the linebacker’s success in 2023 was Brian Flores’ decision to utilize him more as a blitzer rather than simply dropping him back into coverage. Hicks tied a career-high by blitzing 89 times over the course of the season compared to a career-low 17 blitzes in 2022.

As a result, Hicks finished the season with 107 tackles, four tackles for loss, a sack, five passes defended, an interception, and a forced fumble. He was also PFF’s 22nd-highest graded linebacker (min. 500 snaps) with a score of 74.6.

Now, Hicks gets a chance to join his former Vikings teammates in Cleveland following the Browns’ successful 2023 season in which they went 12-5 and made the playoffs despite a revolving door at the QB position.

a look at the giants
Sep 25, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Vikings linebacker Jordan Hicks (58) and safety Camryn Bynum (24) tackle Detroit Lions running back Jamaal Williams (30) during the first quarter at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Hicks will turn 32 years old in June.


Editor’s Note: Statistics for this article were found via Pro Football Focus and Pro Football Reference.

Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of PurplePTSD.com. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.

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