Could Josh McCown be a trade target for the Dallas Cowboys?

Jun 7, 2016; Berea, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns quarterback Josh McCown (13) throws a pass during minicamp at the Cleveland Browns training facility. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 7, 2016; Berea, OH, USA; Cleveland Browns quarterback Josh McCown (13) throws a pass during minicamp at the Cleveland Browns training facility. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /

The Cleveland Browns should be open to the idea of trading Josh McCown if the Dallas Cowboys call about the veteran quarterback.

As the calendar turns to August and NFL training camps are in full swing, the Dallas Cowboys have run into a major injury at the quarterback position after backup quarterback Kellen Moore suffered a left broken fibula injury that is expected to keep him out for most of the upcoming season.

Although Moore has only made two starts over the past four seasons, he was a valuable asset for a Dallas team that has seen starting quarterback Tony Romo miss time in each of the past three seasons with injuries. team prone to injuries at the quarterback position. The Cowboys now need to explore their options for filling Moore’s back-up slot.

The Cleveland Browns may have the solution for Dallas, coming in the form of 37-year-old quarterback Josh McCown.

If the first five days of Browns camp is any indication, it appears that the Browns favor Robert Griffin III to start, as he fits head coach Hue Jackson‘s scheme much more naturally. The Browns also have rookie Cody Kessler and veteran Austin Davis, who is capable of filling a third-string role.

As for Dallas, the only quarterbacks currently on the roster behind Romo are Jameill Showers, who spent last season on the practice squad, and fourth-round draft pick Dak Prescott. It is likely a safe assumption that Prescott would start over Showers, though ideally the Cowboys would prefer to not have either quarterback in a starting role this season. Given Romo’s injury history, that may become a reality if the Cowboys do not bring in another quarterback.

McCown may hold interest for the Cowboys as he brings several benefits to a team with a quarterback shortage, as well as one that has as much inexperience at the position as the Cowboys. In return, Dallas could offer a wide variety of options to the Browns, as Cleveland would be operating from a position of strength in any trade talks.

McCown is signed through 2017, meaning that he provides value despite being on the back end of a lengthy career. The Browns could hold out for a second- or third-round pick in the 2017 NFL Draft, or ask for a lower pick along with one of the defensive reserves the Cowboys currently have on their roster.

However, a more fascinating trade scenario would involve McCown and one of the Cowboys numerous running backs.

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Though the Browns have solidified their top two running backs in Isaiah Crowell and Duke Johnson, adding a third talented back or upgrading their starters could be a worthwhile consideration in a McCown trade. Three options on the Cowboys roster are Lance Dunbar, Darren McFadden and Alfred Morris.

While Dunbar is currently on the PUP list, and McFadden and Morris may come at a higher price than just McCown, upgrading their skill positions is an option that the Browns should consider.

For Dallas, the downside of McCown may be his history of injuries, meaning that if Romo goes down again this fall, the Cowboys made need to turn to Prescott as the starter anyway. But risking a McCown injury may very well be a risk worth taking, as the Cowboys can’t afford to go another season without a capable quarterback.

McCown brings experience and may be the best temporary backup quarterback option for Dallas, and with the right pieces in return Cleveland could benefit from the trade as well.

Next: Browns training camp: Day 5

Though it is still too early to know what the Cowboys are planning in the wake of Moore’s  injury, if they do place a call the Browns should be willing to listen.