On Tuesday, the Cleveland Browns attempted to trade for Cincinnati Bengals backup QB AJ McCarron, but were unsuccessful because they did not report it to the NFL before the 4 P.M. EST trade deadline.
While some may think that this is a classic Browns move where they miss out on a future starting QB. In this case, it was for the best. AJ McCarron would have been an issue in the Dawg Pound.
Some believe that Browns Head Coach Hue Jackson, who was formerly the Bengals offensive coordinator, utilize McCarron. While these two have chemistry, it is foolish to think McCarron could become the Browns future at QB.
Why am I so pessimistic towards this? Well, for two reasons: adding McCarron to this quarterback room would create more confusion in Cleveland, and I question McCarron’s ability to become a franchise QB.
While it is understandable that the Browns may be frustrated with the bad play from rookie QB Deshone Kizer, he is still learning how to be an NFL quarterback and hey–he’s a rookie. I don’t understand why Cleveland wants to give up on him so quickly; some of the best quarterbacks of all time had treacherous rookie campaigns. In 1998, rookie quarterback Peyton Manning threw 28 interceptions. Could you imagine if that happened today? There is an emphasis on rushing a QB into a system and hoping he’ll learn along the way. If they do not perform well, they are replaced. This pressure does not make QBs any better and in fact usually makes them worse.
Since I believe the Browns should be patient with Kizer, they should not have even considered adding McCarron. McCarron would have had to learn the playbook anyway.
Another reason McCarron shouldn’t go to the Browns is that I don’t think he’s better than any QB on the current roster. He’s better than Kevin Hogan, but he is not better than Kizer or Kessler.
Some argue that McCarron has starter potential, but his talent is suppressed because starting QB Andy Dalton is in the way. Dalton is at best a top 20 quarterback; if McCarron can’t steal his starting job, he won’t benefit the Browns.
It’s time Cleveland became committal on a QB, and giving up on Kizer this quickly is unfair and foolish. The Browns caught a break by missing the trade deadline, and hopefully Kizer can prove that the Browns can invest in him for the future.