New Cleveland Browns common supervisor John Dorsey concedes that the NFL is a quarterback-driven league.
In previous years, the Browns have pushed the place right into a brick wall.
This offseason, the Browns have a uncommon probability to handle the place for each the quick and long run. A part of the answer is to not hand over on DeShone Kizer and proceed to work with him. However different items must be added, with one other younger quarterback by way of the draft and with a veteran to make sure the younger participant(s) aren’t compelled on the sector earlier than they’re prepared.
Including a veteran is paramount. Invoice Walsh as soon as mentioned that if a quarterback performs too quickly, the expertise might be traumatic and smash him. That Kizer fought to the top final season is to his credit score. However it doesn’t erase the necessity to add a veteran.
Which implies the dots are in place to carry Alex Smith to the Cleveland Browns.
Smith has been with the Chiefs the previous 5 seasons. He’s received 50 video games, began 76 and has by no means been a part of a shedding season. In 5 playoff video games he’s thrown for 1,250 yards, 9 touchdowns and two interceptions with a 96.zero passer score.
However he’s solely received within the postseason as soon as in Kansas Metropolis, and by no means superior past the divisional spherical. Smith is 33, and the clear feeling popping out of Kansas Metropolis is that the Chiefs really feel he has taken them so far as he can. Final season, the Chiefs traded as much as draft quarterback Patrick Mahomes 10th total. His time appears to have arrived.
Which results in Dorsey, who was a part of the choice to carry Smith to the Chiefs in 2013. If Dorsey is on the lookout for an ideal quarterback to step in and play effectively for a younger group, he doesn’t need to look previous the man he is aware of effectively.
A few of Smith’s numbers are greater than spectacular — particularly in limiting turnovers, a Hue Jackson emphasis. Smith has not thrown greater than eight interceptions in a season since 2010. Kizer led the NFL with 22 final season (six greater than Cam Newton at second); Smith has thrown 20 up to now three seasons.
His completion share has been at 60 % or higher in every of the previous seven seasons. Sixty % is one other Jackson benchmark.
Smith can also be the one quarterback in NFL historical past to throw for three,000 or extra yards and have 10 or fewer interceptions in 5 consecutive seasons. This season he threw for four,042 yards, with 26 touchdowns and 5 interceptions.
In brief, he’d be a superb match for the Browns, the place he might step in and begin and play so long as he performs effectively. He additionally could be the veteran voice for the opposite younger quarterbacks on the roster.
It is simple to level to Smith merely due to Dorsey’s previous affiliation with him. Dorsey might have one other plan in thoughts, as a result of buying Smith is not going to be so simple as Dorsey making a pair calls, clicking his heels and making it occur.
The Browns must promote Smith that they’re the precise group for him. Coming off 1-31, that is not a straightforward promote. Prior to now, a number of veteran quarterbacks have come to the Browns and located the challenges overwhelming. Smith may relish the problem the best way Dorsey does, and he is perhaps attracted by the presence of Josh Gordon and the 5 draft picks within the first two rounds.
It nonetheless could be a tricky promote — particularly if his precedence is a group that may win rapidly.
Different groups are effectively conscious what Smith brings. Arizona might need a new veteran quarterback to go along with a brand new coach after the retirement of Bruce Arians and Carson Palmer. Buffalo might even see itself as one veteran quarterback from advancing within the playoffs. Smith’s coordinator Matt Nagy is now the coach of the Bears, which raises prospects there. The Jets and Redskins (in the event that they lose Kirk Cousins) additionally could possibly be groups that will not less than ponder acquiring Smith. There are also at all times surprises.
As for Cousins, he shall be an alternative choice for the Browns. However as a free agent he’ll be capable of select the place he performs, and the scenario in Cleveland would warrant gross overpayment to get him to signal. In regular occasions, he’d be a superb choice, however because the occasions in Cleveland are critically irregular, it’s unlikely he’d be part of the Browns. Regulate the Broncos signing him.
Smith is below contract for 2018 — and can earn $17 million in wage and bonuses. Buying and selling him would save the Chiefs $10.9 million in salary-cap area. The Browns have a lot cap area they might allocate $55 million this offseason and nonetheless have $55 million left.
It might not occur.
But when it did, Smith positive looks as if a perfect match.