October 30, 2011; San Francisco, CA, USA; Detail view of Cleveland Browns tackle Tony Pashos

The Browns Should Sign Tim Couch

With the dearth of quarterback talent that is available in the NFL right now, especially with all of the injuries that have occurred, the St. Louis Rams apparently reached out to thrice retired Brett Favre.  42 year old Jeff Garcia has lobbied for the Cleveland Browns to give him a shot.  There is a perfectly legitimate option sitting in Kentucky.  The Browns should sign the incredibly well rested Tim Couch.

Couch is easily the most talented quarterback the Browns have had since they came back in 1999.  He had all the tools to be an effective passer in the NFL and considering the situation he was put in with that roster, the more safety conscious NFL would probably have to step in if that situation happened now.

Rather than going to a quarterback that cannot throw at all like Tim Tebow or a quarterback older than dirt like Favre or Garcia, the Browns should reach out to the spry 36 year old Couch.  Couch has stayed close to the game, working and staying in shape while being part of the University of Kentucky’s football coverage.  He just needs the right spot to compete and this roster is light years ahead of where the one he managed to lead to the playoffs in 2002.

His shoulder that forced him out of the league in 2004 has recovered.  He had a brief stint trying to make it work with the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2007, but he is ready to compete and just needs an opportunity.  He knows that the Browns need help and he sees this as an opportunity to take a team to the playoffs.

There are some who make the false assertion that Couch was bad, but most fans cannot name anyone from those offenses he led.  Throwing passes to players like Kevin Johnson, Leslie Sheppard, Darrin Chiaverini, Quincy Morgan, Andre Davis, and Dennis Northcutt, Couch is chomping at the bit to play with skill players at the skill level of Josh Gordon, Jordan Cameron and Davone Bess with guys blocking for him like Joe Thomas and Alex Mack as opposed to Roman Oben and Jim Pyne.  This is his shot at redemption and the Browns should jump on it.

Couch would fit well in Norv Turner’s style of offense with his arm strength and quick release.  He offers a better arm than Brian Hoyer.  Couch is also more athletic than Brandon Weeden, so he can avoid some pressure coming his way.

The Browns need to make this move happen quickly as Couch could have the week against the Baltimore Ravens, the bye week and the week leading up to the Cincinnati Bengals.  With three weeks to prepare, Couch would be ready to step in and play against the Bengals and then the Pittsburgh Steelers.  With a schedule that include a struggling Steelers team twice and the Jacksonville Jaguars, the Browns should have a few comfortable wins but Couch can give them the ability to win against teams like the New York Jets, a Chicago Bears team that has a defense crumbling under the weight of injuries, and maybe even the New England Patriots against the similarly aged Tom Brady.

With the state of quarterbacks in the NFL right now, the Browns and Couch have a unique opportunity to try to catch lightning in a bottle and make a quick run for the playoffs.  And once a team gets to the playoffs, anything can happen.  If the Browns could get hot, there is no telling what could happen.  The playoffs are tough to predict and wild card teams have shown they could make noise and potentially win the Super Bowl.

Sign Tim Couch with this offense and this defense and see how far this team can go.  Fans and the NFL in general could be in for a surprise with just how well it turns out and the Browns could be a big time surprise in the second half of the season.  Forget Tebow, Favre, and Garcia.  Sign Tim Couch.  It is no worse than idea than any of the other three.

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