Cleveland Browns QB Target: Marcus Mariota
Marcus Mariota, the former second overall pick in the 2015 draft was considered a lock at having an all-pro career at Oregon when the Tennessee Titans selected him. He started for four seasons with them but never got to a Super Bowl. He helped the Titans get to the playoffs in 2017. That year they lost in the divisional round to the New England Patriots.
Then in 2020, he signed with the Las Vegas Raiders as the backup to Derek Carr. This season very randomly he’s been brought into games with the Raiders to run plays when both he and Carr are on the field. When the Raiders played the Browns earlier this season, we saw Mariota enter the field and stay on a play where Carr lined up wide as a receiver.
The one area that Mariota has as an additional weapon is his legs. He can scramble and gain yards out of the pocket. In his rookie season, he had nine carries and 112 rushing in one game and had an 87-yard touchdown run as well. In his 2016, he had several games where he scrambled for more than 60 yards in games.
His contract this past year with the Raiders was very reasonable at $1.75 million. If the Browns were to look at free agents this offseason, I believe Mariota would be an excellent choice. Can you imagine if Mayfield were to go down next season to have Mariota step in along with the strong run game that the Browns have? He would definitely add another layer of athleticism. He’s also only 28 years old.