Gino Spadaro: February 19, 2017
Every analyst wants to say the Cleveland Browns absolutely need a Quarterback, and this irritates me very much. The Browns have had 26 different starting QB’s since 1999, and you mean to tell me that not ONE of them had franchise QB potential? I call BS on that. Here’s my reasoning:
In order to have a QB, who lasts all season, that can play the position well and win you games, you must first have a good offensive line and a good defense. The Browns had neither of those last year. In 2002, the Browns ranked among the top 10 in pass protection. How did that season go? Playoffs. In 2007, the Browns were among the top 5 in pass protection. How did that season go? 10-6. In 2016, the Browns were dead last in the league in pass protection. How did that season go? 1-15, worst record in the NFL and worst record in franchise history.
What I’m saying is, look at New England. New England could put my socks back there at QB and still somehow win a football game. Why? It’s because they’re great everywhere else. Don’t you think that if the Browns had a great defense and offensive line, that it would be easier to figure out if you have a good QB or not? If a QB struggles on a team that can’t block and can’t stop the other team from scoring, is the QB really bad or does he just have no help? If a QB struggles on a team that is great in pass protection, running the ball and playing defense, THEN you know the QB is the problem, not something else. Cody Kessler completed 66 percent of his passes with a 3:1 TD/INT ratio. But even with those good numbers, everyone is still saying the Browns NEED a QB. If Kessler can put up good numbers when playing, basically, by himself, he can be GREAT when great pieces get put around him.
So in summary, before worrying about finding a franchise QB, build your offensive line and defense first so you give QB’s a fair chance at being successful in your system. Once you have all of the other pieces in place, it will be 10x easier to find that elusive franchise QB the Browns have been searching for since 1999. But that logic makes too much sense for a lot of people to grasp.