It’s rare to add a starting-caliber talent at this point in the offseason, but the Cardinals did so Thursday when they claimed Desmond Harrison off waivers from the Browns.
Harrison went undrafted out of West Georgia last year but won Cleveland’s starting left tackle job as a rookie. He started eight games before being replaced in the lineup by Greg Robinson.
The Cardinals released tackle Andrew Lauderdale to make room on the roster.
Harrison's talent is clear, although the Browns released Harrison on Wednesday after he missed the first day of mandatory minicamp. Coach Freddie Kitchens said Harrison didn’t make it to practice because he missed his flight to Cleveland, and it was reportedly one of multiple missteps with the organization.
Harrison was suspended three times at the University of Texas in 2014 and not brought back the next season. He took two years off from football before going to West Georgia, and played well enough there to pique the interest of the Browns.
Harrison, listed at 6-foot-6 and 305 pounds, finished with an impressive pass-blocking grade of 73.5 last season, per Pro Football Focus, although his run-blocking grade of 47.7 was below average.
The Cardinals’ starting tackles seem set with D.J. Humphries on the left side and Marcus Gilbert on the right, but both have been injury-prone in past seasons and are in the final year of their contracts.
Harrison is under contract for the next two years at a total of $1.23 million, according to OverTheCap.com.
Images from Wednesday's offseason work