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Paul Kruger | Linebacker | #99

Team: New Orleans Saints
Age / DOB:  (30) / 2/15/1986
Ht / Wt:  6'4' / 270
College: Utah
Drafted: 2009 / Rd. 2 (57) / BAL
Contract: view contract details
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Recent News

Saints signed OLB Paul Kruger, formerly of the Browns.
The Saints were the runners-up to sign Kruger back in 2013 when he picked the Browns. Now 30, Kruger will come in to try and help Cameron Jordan and Nick Fairley get after the quarterback after New Orleans lost Hau'oli Kikaha to a season-ending knee injury. Kruger received high marks from Pro Football Focus for his pass rush last season, even if the pressures only netted him three sacks. Aug 31 - 9:05 AM

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Free agent OLB Paul Kruger will visit the Saints Tuesday.

He also has a visit scheduled with the Chiefs later in the week. Cut by the Browns on Monday, Kruger is easily the best pass rusher on the market and makes a lot of sense for both teams. New Orleans just missed out on landing Kruger in 2013, and they need all the help they can get rushing the passer. Kansas City is thin at outside backer with Justin Houston (knee) out indefinitely.
Source: ESPN
Aug 30 - 8:07 AM

Browns released OLB Paul Kruger.

Kruger started the third preseason game and played extensively with the first-team defense, so this is a shocking cut. Usage contributed to Kruger recording his lowest sack total since 2010 last season, but he was expected to bounce back in new DC Ray Horton's scheme. With plenty of teams desperate for pass rushers, Kruger should not be on the street long.
Aug 29 - 8:12 AM

The Browns want OLB Paul Kruger to rush the passer more this season.

Kruger was forced to play the strong side last year, leading to his lowest sack total (2.5) since 2010. With Mike Pettine gone, he’ll play less coverage. Kruger is a bounce-back candidate in DC Ray Horton’s blitz-heavy scheme.
Apr 2 - 8:02 PM

Browns OLB Paul Kruger said the defense needs to be more flexible next season.

"The biggest thing that we could do better is playing the style of defense that we need to for a particular team," Kruger said. "You can’t play the same play every game and expect to have the same result because offenses are different." This is a very thinly veiled shot at DC Jim O’Neil, who likely will be let go after the season even if Mike Pettine sticks around. Owed $6.5 million with a cap hit of $7.7 million next season, it is not a given Kruger will be back with the Browns, especially considering they tried to trade him at the deadline. Kruger will only be 30 next season, however, and he has a strong argument his down year had more to do with the coaching staff than his ability. He would find plenty of suitors if he hit the open market.
Jan 2 - 11:13 AM

NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reports the Browns are "motivated sellers," and would be willing to absorb some of OLB Paul Kruger's $7 million salary to facilitate a trade.

It's unclear how this would even be possible, as the NFL has rules against swallowing money to make trades happen (unlike baseball). We suppose recently-off-suspension GM Ray Farmer must know a way. It's clear Farmer wants to unload Kruger ahead of Tuesday's deadline.
Tue, Nov 3, 2015 01:46:00 PM

Browns OLB Paul Kruger said he was unsurprised to hear his name come up in trade rumors because of his recent lack of playing time.

"Your value can only be so high based on how much you're on the field," Kruger said. "I hope this is my home, and I don't know where those came from. But the only reason I haven't been surprised is because there's been a lot of talk about different things like this." Kruger played just 57 percent of the defensive snaps Sunday and has played less than 60 percent in three of the last four games. Kruger is one of many Browns rumored to be on the trade block.
Mon, Nov 2, 2015 10:07:00 AM

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Sunday morning that Browns OLB Paul Kruger is on the trade block.

29-year-old Kruger has base salaries of $7 million this year and $6.5 million next season. He registered 11 sacks last year, but has dipped to 0.5 through seven games this season. Kruger still has value as a capable pass rusher who can set the edge in run defense, but his base salaries are cumbersome. The NFL trade deadline is coming next week. The Browns are also willing to deal LT Joe Thomas and C Alex Mack.
Sun, Nov 1, 2015 10:30:00 AM

Browns OLB Paul Kruger is playing on the strong side in base sets this season.

Kruger racked up 11 sacks as the rush linebacker last season, but he is being asked to drop into coverage more on the strong side. "We only really moved him in base defense," DC Jim O’Neil said. "Is it probably costing him five to 10 more opportunities to rush the passer? Yeah. But is it better for us defensively right now?" Kruger has managed just a half-sack through three games.
Sat, Oct 3, 2015 01:25:00 PM

Despite only recording 4.5 sacks, Browns OLB Paul Kruger racked up 51 total pressures in 2013.

Disruption is production. According to Pro Football Focus, Kruger had 39 QB hurries and eight QB hits on the season. We expect Kruger's sack total to increase under new head coach Mike Pettine. Last season, Pettine's Bills posted 57 sacks and had three players reach double-digits - Mario Williams (13), Kyle Williams (10.5) and Jerry Hughes (10.0).
Fri, Apr 11, 2014 10:39:00 AM

The Browns will use Paul Kruger primarily at left outside linebacker in new coordinator Ray Horton's 3-4.

Jabaal Sheard will play right outside 'backer, and first-round pick Barkevious Mingo will be the top pass-rushing reserve. NFL Films' Greg Cosell recently suggested Mingo could be employed like Horton did Daryl Washington on passing downs in Arizona, using linemen to occupy blocks and letting Mingo run free to the quarterback. All three rush 'backers will be candidates for 6-10 sacks.
Mon, Jul 15, 2013 02:26:00 PM

Browns OLBs Paul Kruger and Jabaal Sheard are alternating sides in OTAs.

It's a minor detail. "It gives us a chance to work them there in case you need to down the road and just see guys from different sides," coach Rob Chudzinski said. Whatever side he's rushing from, Kruger will be an every-down player as the strong-side linebacker. Sheard will have to fight for snaps with first-round pick Barkevious Mingo, and could be limited to sub-packages.
Fri, May 24, 2013 09:46:00 AM

Browns agreed to terms with OLB Paul Kruger on a five-year, $41 million contract.

It reportedly includes $20 million guaranteed. It's a generous haul for a four-year veteran with just 15.5 career sacks, but probably not what Kruger had in mind before the start of free agency. Kruger will line up opposite OLB Jabaal Sheard in new DC Ray Horton's attacking 3-4 defense. Kruger's signing leaves Cliff Avril as the lone remaining pass-rushing jewel on the open market.
Tue, Mar 12, 2013 04:40:00 PM

CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora considers the Browns "almost certain" to land free agent Paul Kruger.

La Canfora is calling the union a near certainty after the Baltimore Sun reported the Browns were "closing in" on the pass rusher Tuesday morning. We anticipate Kruger approaching $10 million in annual value on his Browns deal.
Tue, Mar 12, 2013 03:24:00 PM

Sources tell the Baltimore Sun that the Browns are "closing in" on free agent OLB Paul Kruger.

The Browns have made no secret of their desire to make a big splash early in free agency, and Kruger has long been their prime target. With Cliff Avril getting linked to the Bucs and Colts, Cleveland's pursuit of Kruger has apparently intensified. We could see a deal done as soon as Tuesday evening.
Tue, Mar 12, 2013 10:13:00 AM

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3RB1Mark Ingram
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FB1John Kuhn
WR11Brandin Cooks
2Brandon Coleman
3Tommylee Lewis
WR21Willie Snead
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WR31Michael Thomas
TE1Coby Fleener
2Josh Hill
3Chris Manhertz
LT1Terron Armstead
LG1Tim Lelito
2Senio Kelemete
C1Max Unger
RG1Andrus Peat
2Khalif Barnes
3Jahri Evans
RT1Zach Strief
2Landon Turner
K1Wil Lutz