Cleveland Browns: Salary shouldn’t influence starting QB decision

(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

The Cleveland Browns are paying Brock Osweiler a hefty sum in 2017, but that shouldn’t factor into Hue Jackson’s decision on the quarterback position.

The general mood surrounding the trade that brought Brock Osweiler to Cleveland is that the Cleveland Browns made the right decision.

Osweiler brought draft picks with him, along with a $16 million bill in 2017.

The money owed to Osweiler is a lot for a player who may not even start for the Browns, and should in no way influence what the Browns do with the starting quarterback position this year.

When the former Houston Texan came to Cleveland, fans assumed it was just a salary dump for the Texans and that the Browns would trade or cut ties with Osweiler immediately. But trading a below-average quarterback getting paid above-average money isn’t an easy task the Browns likely knew heading into the process.

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With the rebuilding Browns coveting draft picks and having plenty of money to throw around, the front office may have decided keeping Osweiler around for one season could help the younger quarterbacks around him. That, or they misread the market.

Regardless, Osweiler is here and some fans are rallying behind him in the current quarterback competition. He happens to be the team’s largest cap hit in 2017, so some fans may want to see what he has since he is getting paid all that money.

But Hue Jackson and the Browns don’t have to pay for the Texans’ sins, at least when it comes to on-field business. Jackson and the front office should go with the best option, and not let Osweiler’s salary factor into any decision.

Jackson has already made it clear the best player will win the job, but fans don’t always know what goes on behind closed doors. Yet this new group in charge seems to be the first rational regime in town since 1999, so starting Osweiler just for the money he’s receiving doesn’t seem likely. The fact the team barely announced his arrival when trading with Houston shows he was never in the long-term plans.

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That doesn’t mean he can’t end up as the starter and surprise Browns fans with a career resurgence, but it should only be because he was clearly better than the competition.