The Cleveland Browns exercised the fifth-year option on defensive lineman Phil Taylor's rookie contract on Friday morning, a move that will keep their nose tackle in Cleveland through the 2015 season.
Taylor, the 21st overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft, has made 38 starts in 39 games with the Browns. In that time on the field, he has registered 130 total tackles, made seven quarterback sacks, defended two passes, recovered one fumble and forced another.
"I am humbled and honored that the Browns exercised the fifth-year option on my contract," Taylor said in a release from the team. "I truly hope to be in Cleveland my entire career and to be part of the team that turns this franchise back into a perennial winner and championship contender, and restores the luster of the Dawg Pound!"
Last fall, Taylor switched from a defensive tackle in a 4-3 front to a nose tackle in the 3-4 scheme utilized by then defensive coordinator Ray Horton. He helped the Browns finish ninth in the NFL in total defense, their best performance since the playoff season of 1994, by registering 57 total tackles and two sacks.
"It's very evident to us watching on tape and seeing him in person this week that Phil Taylor is very explosive and he's a great fit for what we want to do on defense," head coach Mike Pettine said. "I like his ability to rush the passer and be there to clog up the middle at the point of attack when we need him."