@Brad_Ward12 on Twitter
The latest rumor swirling around the Cleveland Browns this week is that there is a disconnect within the organization about whether they should take Myles Garrett or quarterback Mitchell Trubisky with the first pick in the 2017 draft.
At the same time, Mike Freeman of Bleacher Report released his “10 Point Stance” piece in which he features an NFL scouts insight into every team’s picks in the draft. Freeman prefaced his scout’s comments on the Browns’ first overall pick with this:
“The scout also feels that there are no true first-round quarterbacks in this draft. But because teams are so desperate they will reach, and that need to grasp at a QB will be the main story emerging from this draft.
It’s why this scout, and so many in football that I interview, still believes the Patriots will trade backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo despite a report from Ian Rapoport and Mike Garafolo of NFL Network that the Texans and Browns likely won’t be able to convince the Pats to part with him. Still, our personnel man is convinced at least one team will get so desperate they’ll offer the Patriots a deal they can’t refuse.”
He then went on to write this about the Browns and their sudden “conflict” at number 1 overall.
First let’s address the Jimmy Garoppolo talk. The narrative around the Browns potential trade for Garappolo has quieted to a murmur but is in no way out of the question or a done deal. I had the opportunity to interview USA Today’s managing editor of The Patriots Wire, Henry Mckenna a month ago and he told me he thought that if a deal for Garappolo happened it would most likely go down in the days approaching the draft or on draft night.
Currently, Bill Belichick and the Patriots have zero picks in the first two rounds of the upcoming draft. The first time the Patriots will select a player, as of this moment, would be at pick no. 72. It had appeared that the Pats might be able to get a pick from New Orleans in exchange for Malcolm Butler’s departure, however; Butler opted to not sign the Saints offer sheet. We know how much Bill loves his draft picks and in a draft so deep with defensive players that can potentially be key contributors right away, how can he just stand by and watch?
No one can seem to confirm whether or not or to what extent Cleveland and New England have spoken on this topic but most speculate that the Browns have at least taken the Patriots temperature as far as cost goes. It really makes no sense for a team managing a shrinking window of opportunity with their Hall of Fame quarterback to hold on to a player that could very likely never set foot on the field for them again, instead of cashing him in for some youth that can play right away.
As far as the recent rumblings of disconnect in the Browns organization, that makes some sense too. I am of the belief that regardless of whatever conversations that may or may not have been had with Jimmy Haslam, this regime cannot punt at quarterback again.
You don’t get two tank seasons.
Objective number one when Sashi Brown and Hue Jackson took over was to find the guy at quarterback. They punted last year and went 1-15. You don’t get to punt again. A 3-13 season will get you fired, however, a 3-13 season and quarterback of the future on the roster gets you more time. To go two off-seasons without targeting a realistic option at quarterback is unacceptable. So let’s hope these rumors are true about Hue wanting a quarterback because you need to take one this year. Last year, everybody said just wait, next year Deshaun Watson is coming out, we can get him. You can’t bank on next season’s draft class, it’s too risky and you might not be the guys making the picks at that point.
No, the Browns should not pass on Myles Garrett at no. 1 overall but they have more than enough ammo to get into position to take Mitchell Trubisky if that’s the guy Hue wants. Tennessee is ripe for a trade down, if needed, allowing the Browns to get in front of the Jets and take their guy. The point is that whether it be Garappolo via trade, Trubisky or one of the other top three quarterbacks in the 2017 draft, the Browns have to make quarterback a priority this year, it’s the only way you see next year.
By: Brad Ward
@Brad_Ward12 on Twitter