The Browns agreed to terms on a five-year contract with guard John Greco, the team announced today.
Greco’s contract was set to expire following the 2013 season, but he’s now signed through 2017. Financial terms of the deal were not immediately disclosed.
Greco started 10 games at left guard this past season because Jason Pinkston was placed on injured reserve with a blood clot in his lung. In his first four NFL seasons, Greco had only four starts, but he capitalized on his opportunity last season, impressing the new coaching staff and front office.
“John is a solid, all-around teammate, on and off the field,” Browns coach Rob Chudzinski said in a news release. “He was given an opportunity to play last year and really showed well. He’s respected in the locker room for his approach, consistency and team-first attitude.”
The 6-foot-4, 315-pound Greco, 28, spent time at right and left guard this spring and will enter training camp, which opens to the public Thursday, in a three-man competition for two starting spots. Greco rotated with Shawn Lauvao and Pinkston throughout organized team activities and minicamp, but he seemed to receive the most amount of practice time with the first-team offense. The contract extension, though, does not guarantee Greco a starting role.
“I’m hungry for a starting spot, no matter where it is, no matter what position it is,” Greco said in May.
The St. Louis Rams drafted Greco, a Youngstown native, in the third round (65th overall) in 2008. They traded him to the Browns before the start of the 2011 season in exchange for a conditional draft pick.
Now Greco is expected to stay put for a while.
“One of our goals is, whenever possible, to develop and keep our own players,” Browns CEO Joe Banner said in the release. “We’re glad in this case that it worked out, and was mutually beneficial.”