Cleveland Browns QB option that isn’t Baker Mayfield No. 1: Kirk Cousins
Perhaps the most likely option for the Cleveland Browns (behind Baker Mayfield staying), is a trade for Kirk Cousins. The Vikings completely cleaned house with coaches and the general manager, and with a $45 million cap hit, you may see them highly motivated to trade Cousins as well.
The big issue here is he must be willing to restructure the deal. The Browns would likely be willing to pay him $30 plus million per year, but I don’t see them willing to take the $45 million cap hit with only one year on the deal.
The other positive, the Vikings have little leverage if they want to dump the contract. It’s fully guaranteed so they will just be moving money, not looking for anything in return.
I have heard the argument this offseason that Cousins isn’t an improvement for Mayfield. And while he does have a similar record overall at 59-59-2, the guy has six seasons with over 4,000 passing yards (one for nearly 5,000), Mayfield has zero.
I’m not saying he is Aaron Rodgers or Patrick Mahomes, but the statistics don’t like, Cousins has a good arm and can push the ball downfield. I think it’s safe to say the Browns also have a better roster than any team he’s ever been on. He went 24-23-1 over a three-year span with a Washington roster that didn’t have much talent at all.
Given the connection between the organizations, if the Browns are going to move on from Mayfield, I see Cousins as the guy. It’s not the splash move that some want, but I believe it makes this roster significantly better.