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Browns release Donte Whitner

Mike Florio says the Browns' release of Donte Whitner was well within the team's rights but it also did not do Whitner any favors.

After the Browns released linebacker Karlos Dansby and wide receiver Dwayne Bowe in March, safety Donte Whitner said he wasn’t worried about getting released by the Browns as part of the team’s latest housecleaning and that he wanted “to win a championship in Cleveland myself.”

He won’t get a chance to follow through on that desire. The Browns released Whitner on Saturday in a move that did not sit well with the veteran.

Whitner thanked Cleveland in a tweet and referenced new exec Paul DePodesta’s baseball experience by saying his future would be in a different place because the Browns are “playing MONEYBALL now.” Whitner also took issue with the Browns’ timing.

Whitner was set to make $6.2 million in 2016 and matching that may be tough. He should find interest on the open market after a solid season in 2015, though, and joins Reggie Nelson as available veteran options a month into free agency.

The Browns save nearly $4 million under the cap, but take on $4.5 million in dead money as a result of the move. With Tashaun Gipson gone, the Browns will have different starters at both safety spots in 2016.