Karlos Dansby has his eyes on the 20-20 club, but the statistical territory he's close to reaching is even more exclusive than he envisioned.
Dansby, at 33 years old and in his 12th NFL season, intercepted Peyton Manning twice Sunday in Cleveland's 26-23 overtime loss to the Broncos. This wasn't the first time in Dansby's career he came away with two picks in a single game and he's hoping it isn't his last.
Dansby is the NFL's only active player with at least 40 career sacks and at least 15 interceptions. He has 41 and 18, respectively, after Sunday's game, which was arguably his best as a Brown since he joined the team in 2014.
With two more interceptions, Dansby will join the NFL's "20-20" club for career sacks and interceptions. He'd be the 15th, and that means a lot to a player who has prided himself on adapting his body and skill set to the changing nature of NFL offenses. Of the 14 players who currently make up the 20-20 list, seven are linebackers.
"I had a goal of trying to do it in Year 5, I think. I saw Adrian Wilson get into the 20-20 club," said Dansby, who was teammates with Wilson during their time together with the Arizona Cardinals. "Once I saw him get into the 20-20 club, I was like that is monumental. That is something I wanted to strive to do."
But there's even more exclusive territory that Dansby would hit with his 20th interception. He'll be the fifth player in NFL history to record at least 40 career sacks and 20 picks.
The entirety of that group is linebackers -- Ray Lewis, Seth Joyner, Wilber Marshall and Brian Urlacher. If Dansby joins that club, he doesn't expect it to grow anytime in the near future.
"The way the game is changing, it is hard for guys to get an opportunity to get sacks like that now," Dansby said. "The ball is coming out quicker. For me to be an inside backer to do that, I think I may be the last one."
Dansby smiled when he learned he was the first player in NFL history to record a pick-six off both Eli and Peyton Manning. His 35-yard interception return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter was the fifth score of his career. All have come off interceptions.
"That is an honor as well," Dansby said. "Hopefully I can go to their camp and get Archie and make it a three-peat. It will be awesome."
Dansby has shown little signs of slowing down in his 12th season, as he's played almost every single snap in the first six games and leads the Browns with 47 tackles. His first-quarter interception of Manning was the team's first since the second quarter of Week 1 and kickstarted a defensive performance in which the Browns intercepted the future Hall of Fame quarterback three times.
Still, the Browns were on the wrong end of the 26-23 result, and Dansby knows it will take more than his interceptions to get the Browns defense back to where it wants to be.
"We only got (10) more (games) left, so we have to be great down the stretch in order for us to have an opportunity for us to reach our goals," Dansby said. "We are pressing right now. We are not going to lay down. We have a lot of football to play."
20-20 club (20 sacks, 20 interceptions)
DB Charles Woodson (1998-present)
DB Ronde Barber (1997-2012)
DB LeRoy Butler (1990-2001)
DB Brian Dawkins (1996-2011)
DB Rodney Harrison (1994-2008)
LB Ray Lewis (1996-2012)
LB Donnie Edwards (1996-2008)
LB William Thomas (1991-2001)
DB Adrian Wilson (2001-2012)
DB Lawyer Milloy (1996-2010)
LB Seth Joyner (1986-1998)
LB London Fletcher (1998-2013)
LB Wilber Marshall (1984-1995)
LB Brian Urlacher (2000-2012)
40-20 club (40 sacks, 20 interceptions)
Lewis (41.5 sacks, 31 interceptions)
Joyner (52 sacks, 22 interceptions)
Marshall (45 sacks, 23 interceptions)
Urlacher (41.5 sacks, 22 interceptions)