The Cleveland Browns still need a quarterback. Could Brock Osweiler end up filling the role, at least temporarily?
Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson entered the team’s offseason workouts with the plan that Cody Kessler would work as the first-team quarterback.
Kessler is not without his charms as he is a player that will do what is asked of him (as long as you don’t ask him to throw deep), doesn’t cause trouble and is generally a good guy to have on the roster.
But none of that screams “starting quarterback,” which means that while the Browns will open training camp with Kessler as the presumptive starter, the situation will remain fluid and may change once the preseason schedules comes to a close.
And if that happens, it could be that Brock Osweiler is the man left standing at the quarterback position. And if that comes about, it won’t be a surprise to at least one player, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter:
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The Osweiler storyline has been an odd one, even by the warped standards of Cleveland quarterbacks. Acquired from the Houston Texans in one of the first salary-dump trades in NFL history, the plan was that the Browns would reportedly trade or release Osweiler as soon as possible.
No one from the Browns ever said that was the plan, of course, and such a move never materialized, which means we could be in store for an actual training camp battle at the game’s most-important position.
As is his right, Jackson has played it coy when it comes to the looming decision on who will line up under center for the season’s first game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but he does have a clear idea of what he wants from the position, according to clevelandbrowns.com:
"“The accuracy and consistency, running our offense and not turning the ball over. In order to play for us, we cannot turn the ball over. That is one thing that I have stressed, we turned it over way too much. Now, everybody is involved in that, that is not just them. That is an offensive unit issue. We have to solve that, and I think that is something that we are working on.”"
On the surface there is no reason why Osweiler can’t win the starter’s role. DeShone Kizer, a second-round selection, is not ready to be a starter at the NFL level, and Kessler’s best role is as a backup quarterback who won’t kill the team if he has to play, but also won’t help the team if he has to play.
Osweiler, on the other hand, has had the most success at the NFL level of any quarterback on the roster, and filled the Jimmy Garoppolo role a year ago as the quarterback that the Denver Broncos were willing to give millions to and the Houston Texans actually did give millions to.
He’s not the longterm answer, but neither is Kessler. So, at the end of the day, it probably doesn’t not matter which player Jackson taps for the opening day start. And, since this is the Browns, the likelihood of Osweiler, Kessler and Kizer will all be called upon at some point this fall to start a game.
But at least we should have some interesting debates to follow throughout training camp.