Saturday, January 17, 2015

How Many Draft Picks Do the Browns Burn on Quarterbacks?

The Cleveland Browns love to draft quarterbacks. 

When they resumed operations in 1999, they had the rights to the top pick overall.  However the New Orleans Saints were interested in Rickey Williams ultimately gave up their 1999 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7th picks, plus their 2000 number 1 and number 3.   Wowzers, what a haul.  No sane team, especially an expansion team, could turn down an 8-for-1 trade like this.  But we turned that down because Coach Chris Palmer was convinced that Tim Couch would be a Hall of Famer with Palmer's quarterback "guru" ability. 

Coach Chris Palmer figured 50 sacks per year was just the thing to inspire Tim Couch to be a great quarterback.  

In 2000 they took a flyer on Spergon Wynn Round 6.  

Spergon Wynn had zero success in the NFL.

From there, they used free agents to replace Couch, and were able to resist drafting another qb till 2004 when they took Luke McCown.  Then in 2005 they used a number 3 on Charlie Frye.  
Charlie Frye went 6-13 as a starter for the Browns.  That makes him one of the winningest qbs for the new Browns, behind Couch and Derek Anderson, and tied with Colt McCoy.  

So who scouted Brady Quinn?  He was a good competitor, but probably did not have the arm talent that the scouts thought.  

They traded a number 1 and a number 2 for Brady Quinn in 2007.  In 2010 they took Colt McCoy in the third round. In 2011, they traded a 7th round pick for Seneca Wallace.  In 2012 they took Brandon Weeden in the first round, and in 2014 they traded a number one and a number 3 for Johnny Manziel.  

 Was Johnny Football worth a Number 1 and a Number 3?

Ok, so it's been 16 years since the new Browns started drafting.   Over that period of time, here's the draft picks either used directly or traded for a quarterback, or turned down in the Tim Couch non-deal:  

First round:  5 picks

Second Round:  1 pick
Third Round: 5 picks
Fourth Round:  1 pick
Fifth Round:  1 pick
Sixth Round:  2  picks
Seventh Round:  2 picks

Total:  17 picks in 16 years.  

Whoa! 17 picks in 16 years??  That has to be some kind of record. Nine qbs actually wore the Browns uniform as a result of this madness.  Mostly they have not been very successful.   In my opinion, the best was probably Tim Couch who was a deserving NFL starter, and got the Browns into the playoffs in 2002.  Injuries, probably caused by a record number of sacks given up by the blocking-adverse offensive line, eventually took their toll, and Couch was not able to throw after that year.   

Has all this carnage caused the Browns to lose their appetite for quarterbacks?  Maybe not.  Word is that they are willing to bundle 2 or 3 first round picks for either Jameis Winston or Marcus Mariota.  Stay tuned for future news....