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Report: former Patriot linebacker Jamie Collins may not stay in Cleveland

Jamie Collins, who the Patriots traded to the Cleveland Browns earlier this season, is making it clear that money will be the deciding factor in whether he re-signs with the Browns.

Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

It's fitting that Jamie Collins has a tattoo of the Joker (the Dark Knight version, not whatever that was in Suicide Squad), because one of the Joker's most BAMF lines fits Jamie's contract situation perfectly:

"If you're good at something, never do it for free."

Cleveland Browns coach Hue Jackson had said around Halloween that he would "love" to keep Jamie Collins on the team, and noted that they wouldn't have traded for him in the first place if they didn't want to lock Collins up long-term.  Makes sense, right?  A rebuilding (are they ever not?) Browns team trades for a guy that could be a key piece in their defense in the prime of his career and has boatloads of cap space to sign a deal that'd probably keep Jamie in Cleveland until he hits the big 3-0?

Turns out, according to Pro Football Talk, Collins is still down to stay with the Browns - for the right price, and it doesn't sound like Cleveland's ponying up anything that's going to get the job done so far.

Take it away, PFT!

"If the money is right, Collins says, he'd like to come back."

"Collins says he has 'zero complaints' about his time with the Browns and said he 'won't stress over nothing' regarding free agency, including the possibility that the Browns would franchise tag him to keep him off the open market."

(Note: the franchise tag for linebackers this season was a bit over $14,000,000.00, which I'm sure Collins "won't stress" about getting if it comes to that.)

Let's also remember that Jamie previously put the kibosh on rumors that he wanted a Von Miller-type contract, saying "I don't know anything about Von Miller money.  Nothing.  Never heard of that.  Never came out of my mouth.  Nothing."

Safe to say that Patriots fans will be watching this one pretty closely - especially if the Browns somehow manage to work it out with Collins before New England can get something done with Dont'a Hightower.

And if the Browns don't open up the checkbook and Jamie hits free agency...that bidding war on Day 1 of free agency is going to make him a very, very rich man.  Somewhere, anyway.

Good thing that third-round comp pick the Patriots got for Collins is basically a done deal now.