At the start of the new NFL year, the Cleveland Browns made one of the most unexpected and shocking deals in recent history.
The Texans traded quarterback Brock Osweiler and a 2018 second-round pick to Cleveland in exchange for nothing other than the Browns taking Osweiler’s guaranteed salary off of Houston’s books.
Such a deal is fairly common in the NBA, but almost never happens in the NFL.
Both sides benefit from the deal, as the move clears space for the Texans to go after Tony Romo, who is being shopped by the Dallas Cowboys.
Further, it gives the Browns, who have over $100 million in cap space, a 2018 second-round pick and the option to trade Osweiler if they find a suitor.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter, who was one of the first to break the deal, clearly explained the uncommon deal on his Facebook page.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that the Browns are planning on cutting Osweiler, but are leaving the door open to a potential trade.
It will be interesting to see what happens if a team like the Jets, who have limited options at the quarterback spot, decide to pursue Osweiler over someone like Jay Cutler, for example.
Schefter reported that multiple teams have already reached out to Cleveland about Osweiler.
Therefore, going with a “Moneyball” approach might have worked out for Cleveland, especially if they’re able to flip him for another draft pick.
Or, what no one is reporting, there is also a chance that the Browns hold onto him. Remember that Cleveland has struggled mightily from the QB spot and is searching for a star under center.
Based on the following quote from Browns GM Sashi Brown, you can judge for yourself what the organization’s plans are.
While Brown was quick to explain that his excitement was based on landing another second-round pick, not Osweiler, he did go on to say that he looked forward to having him “come in and compete”.
After serving a key role for the Denver Broncos in their Super Bowl winning season back in 2015, playing eight games while Peyton Manning recovered from an injury, Osweiler decided to jump ship after Manning retired, chasing the money to sign a 4-year, $72 million deal with the Texans.
While he did manage to win a playoff game, he struggled as a whole, completing 59.0 percent of his passes for 2,957 yards, 15 touchdowns and 16 interceptions for a 72.2 quarterback rating. He was also benched in Week 17 for his poor play.
But the 6’8”, 240-pounder is still just 26-years old and since the Browns are in need of an infusion of talent, the former Super Bowl winner might be worth giving a shot.
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