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Browns acquire 49ers punter Andy Lee for draft pick

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Cleveland has swung a trade for a punter.

The Browns on Saturday shipped a 2017 seventh-round pick to the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for three-time Pro Bowl punter Andy Lee, a source involved in the swap told NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport. The team later confirmed the deal.

Lee became expendable after the Niners drafted Bradley Pinion in the fifth round of this year's draft. Also expendable: Browns punter Spencer Lanning, who was waived Saturday after the swap went down, per the team.

Lanning finished 17th in the NFL last season with 39.2 net yards per kick. Lee finished 15th in that category with a net of 39.6 yards, while his gross average of 46.8 yards was sixth-best league-wide. The 11-year veteran also made three Pro Bowls while never missing a game for the 49ers since being picked by the team in the sixth round of the 2004 NFL Draft.

"We've said all along that we are going to be deliberate in our pursuit to acquire talent that we feel can improve our roster," Browns general manager Ray Farmer said in a statement. "Andy Lee has consistently been a top punter in this league. We are excited to be able to add a punter of his caliber to our team."

Said Lee: "I'm excited about my new start and becoming a member of the Cleveland Browns. I've heard so many good things about the city of Cleveland and the loyalty and passion of the fans from my former teammate Phil Dawson. I've also heard some very positive things about the type of organization and team the Browns are building so my family and I are very much looking forward to becoming a part of it."

Lee should see plenty of work in Cleveland after Lanning finished third in the NFL last season with a whopping 93 punts. Lanning's final move as a Brown was decidedly classy:

The Browns this offseason have made changes at placekicker, long snapper and now punter. With Cleveland poised to run a ball-control offense, trading for a proven and talented leg makes sense in the season-long struggle for field position.

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