The plot thickens
Did the Browns get schooled Thursday by the Tennessee Titans and Los Angeles Rams?
In the wake of the blockbuster trade between the Rams and Titans that enabled the Rams to obtain the top pick in the National Football League college draft in two weeks, it sure looks that way.
The Rams moved up from #15 to the top spot by shipping their first four picks (Nos. 15, 43, 45 and 76) this year and their first- and third-round choices next year to the Titans in order to be in a position to draft their future quarterback.
Various reports have the Rams selecting Jared Goff. Others strongly suggest Carson Wentz will be the choice.
Before the trade, various reports had the Browns at No. 2 selecting Goff. Others strongly suggested Wentz would be the choice. The mystery deepens.
The big question, though, is whether the Browns were in any way involved in talks with the Rams to make a similar deal than the one announced Thursday.
If so, why did the Titans win? The Browns certainly had as much, if not more, to offer. And if not, why not? There appears to be no immediate response from Berea. (Stand by for a possible update to clear up this matter.)
It certainly would have behooved the Browns to make such a deal considering the king’s ransom the Titans hauled in. The big difference between the two clubs, though, is the Titans already have their franchise quarterback in Marcus Mariota.
They, as do the Browns, have numerous pieces and parts elsewhere on the roster that need to be addressed. They now have the opportunity to focus on rebuilding their roster with this deal.
The deal now puts the Browns in the unique position of being more reactive, depending on what the Rams do, than proactive. Unless, that is, they are satisfied with whomever they are forced to take.
Here’s another unless. Unless another team seeking a quarterback is willing to move up to grab whoever the Rams don’t take and the Browns are in listening mode. Say, for instance like the Dallas Cowboys and Philadelphia Eagles.
The Cowboys own the fourth overall selection. Their quarterback, Tony Romo, isn’t getting any younger – he’s 36 this month – and has become more brittle. He played only four games last season.
The Eagles, sitting at No. 8, are trying to get out from under the Chip Kelly disaster and need a young quarterback. The best on the roster now is Sam Bradford, another brittle quarterback.
Right now, no one knows what is going through the minds of the Browns’ deep thinkers. The Rams-Titans swap certainly casts a whole different light on the situation.
Top boss Sashi Brown and Chief Strategy Officer Paul DePodesta now have two weeks to figure it all out. The intrigue is somewhat intoxicating and beckons all kinds of speculation.
It’s fairly safe to say this will be the Browns’ most interesting draft since the expansion days.