Cleveland Browns: Josh McCown must be kept for 2016
Josh McCown is an important piece to the 2016 version of the Cleveland Browns.
The Cleveland Browns and a consistent quarterback are two things that have never been able to find one another.
The quarterback carousel in Cleveland is a national punchline and something the new front office is trying to change.
Once Johnny Manziel was released and sent off on his own to party with no NFL ties, Josh McCown was in place as the current starting quarterback if the 2016 season started today. But few expect McCown to take the field as the starter in Week 1.
The recent news that the Browns are pursuing Robert Griffin III means the front office has no intentions of quietly leaving the position to McCown in 2016. And there is no reason to blame them for going after Griffin. He would come to one of the, at least on paper, worst teams in the NFL heading into the 2016 season.
Griffin would be given the chance to turn around his career, along with a franchise needing a rebuild.
But even if the Browns do go ahead and sign Griffin, he would not come in as the presumed quarterback of the future. Either Jared Goff or Carson Wentz have a great chance of being selected second overall by the Browns.
That holds true if RG III is signed or if he chooses to sign elsewhere. The Browns are looking to rebuild, and this type of quarterback situation makes perfect sense.
If Griffin is signed, he can serve as the starter in 2016. McCown could be the backup at the beginning of the season, and could serve as the mentor to a rookie quarterback.
This is not to say Griffin isn’t capable of mentoring a rookie quarterback, but his focus is going to be on being an NFL starting quarterback. He is still young himself, not nearly at a point in his career where he is ready to take a step back and focus solely on being a mentor.
McCown being on the roster would show fans that the Browns are taking a step toward development, and would not just be drafting a quarterback and throwing him on the field to fail. If Griffin is signed, it also gives the Browns an experienced backup who could step in if Griffin was injured. In a season with low expectations, development would serve better than failing on the field.
If Griffin is not signed, McCown should enter the 2016 season as the starter. He can still serve as the mentor in this role, and the rookie can step in if it is deemed he is ready to be the starter. This would symbolize a change in direction for the franchise, and a change that should lead to success in the near future.