5 emergency QB options if the Browns lose Deshaun Watson to injury in 2023

  • Joshua Dobbs is more than capable
  • Cam Newton is open to being a backup in 2023
  • Teddy Bridgewater can be ready at any given time

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4. Trade for Trey Lance

I'm not sure how much longer the San Francisco 49ers are going to hang on to Trey Lance. Given that team's injury woes at the QB position in recent years, it wouldn't shock me if they simply hoard guys at the position.

At the same time, what is going to be the eventual fate of Trey Lance? The former third overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft has seemingly been Wally Pipp'd by former Mr. Irrelevant, Brock Purdy. The 49ers signed Sam Darnold in the 2023 offseason as a reclamation project/backup and he could end up being the QB2 behind Purdy when all is said and done.

Let's say, in a hypothetical world, that something happens to Deshaun Watson and Lance is sitting third on the 49ers' QB depth chart. Could the Browns offer something to San Francisco and see if a deal could get done? Absolutely. Lance has tons of talent and the offensive scheme in Cleveland won't be far off from what he's been running under Kyle Shanahan with the 49ers.

5. Teddy Bridgewater, free agent

Kevin Stefanski was with the Minnesota Vikings organization from 2006-2019 and held just about every role you can possibly have on the offensive side of the ball starting with being the team's version of Dwight Schrute in 2006, all the way to becoming offensive coordinator in 2019.


Stefanski had a front-row seat to everything on the offensive side of the ball for the Vikings in that timeframe, which would have obviously included the drafting and developing of Teddy Bridgewater in 2014. Bridgewater was a first-round pick by the Vikings in 2014 and looked like he was on a trajectory to become one of the better starters in the league before an injury totally derailed his NFL career.

And that has unfortunately been the story for Teddy ever since the 2016 offseason. Injuries have left him without a team heading into the 2023 season, at least as of right now, but the Cleveland Browns make tremendous sense for him especially if something happens to Deshaun Watson.

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