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Browns: Corner signs, but linebacker still searching


The Browns signed a cornerback and hosted a linebacker Monday. The offseason keeps chugging along.

Kevin Barnes signed a one-year contract and will join the competition at cornerback. He has the size (6-foot-1, 190 pounds) to play outside and also has experience playing in the slot.

Barnes, 26, has played 31 games with three starts. He spent three years with the Redskins after being drafted in the third round in 2009 out of Maryland. He was traded to the Lions before last season but played only two games before being cut.

For his career, Barnes has 44 tackles, three interceptions and nine passes defensed. He played 15 games in 2011 with 26 tackles, two interceptions and six quarterback hurries.

Last week the Browns signed Chris Owens, who has played inside and outside but projects as a nickel or dime cornerback.

Outside linebacker Victor Butler reportedly took a physical with the Browns on Monday but left without a contract and was headed to Philadelphia for a visit. The Plain Dealer was first to report the visit with the Eagles.

Butler, 25, remains a possibility for the Browns. He previously visited Pittsburgh and New Orleans.

Butler (6-2, 245) was a situational pass rusher off the bench for the Cowboys last season. He played less than a third of the snaps on defense but recorded three sacks, two forced fumbles and had nine quarterback hurries. He also plays special teams.

Butler spent his first four years with the Cowboys, starting two of 63 games. He has 89 career tackles with 11 sacks and four forced fumbles.

The Browns’ top priority in free agency has been adding pass-rush ability at outside linebacker. They previously signed Paul Kruger and Quentin Groves and continue to search for depth for the attacking, aggressive defense they desire.

Contact Scott Petrak at 329-7253 or Like him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter.

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