The Browns’ decision to retain head coach Eric Mangini isn’t the only unconventional move they made this offseason.
Signing Kwaku Danso is also on the list. With just three college appearances under his belt — all in cleanup duty — the 28-year-old Ghana native is the most intriguing story to come out of Cleveland’s spring workouts in Berea, Ohio.
"This is a blessing," he told Yahoo Sports. "This right here is a blessing. This tells you that life is what you make it."
The 6-foot-5, 336-pound defensive end’s introduction to football came just three years ago at East Carolina University. Yet after watching Danso bench-press 225 pounds 39 times, Browns defensive coordinator Rob Ryan decided the team should sign the undrafted free agent.
Danso was inspired to take up football after bumping into a group of Washington Redskins players at a night club where he worked as a bouncer. The players suggested his larger-than-life frame would be well-suited for the gridiron.
Three odd jobs later, Danso had scrounged up enough money to enroll at East Carolina and try to walk on.
In college, Danso was primarily used in warmups to intimidate opposing teams, but with a little NFL seasoning, Ryan sees a brighter future ahead.
“What jumps out at you is his size, and he’s all muscle,” Ryan told Yahoo Sports. “Shoot, he can be a two-gapper. He’s as strong as an ox.”