Brock Osweiler’s path in the NFL has been nothing short of perplexing.
Serving as Peyton Manning’s relief in what ended up being a Super Bowl winning season for the Denver Broncos just two years ago, he was thought of as the clear heir-apparent to take over in Denver.
However, he decided to chase the money and jump ship for the Houston Texans, where he was given a preposterously-lucrative four-year, $72 million deal to be their quarterback of the future.
But, that future barely lasted one season. While he posted an 9-7 record in the 14 games he started for the Texans (including a 1-1 record in the playoffs), Osweiler’s play was less than stellar, as he completed 59.0 percent of his passes for 2,957 yards, 15 touchdowns and 16 interceptions in the regular season and just 56.9 percent of his passes for 365 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions in the playoffs.
Therefore, when the Cleveland Browns agreed to a trade with the Texans, taking Osweiler off their books for a slew of draft picks, it was the quick end of an era for the embattled quarterback.
But, oddly enough, the Browns have not ruled out the possibility that Osweiler will be under center in Week 1 for their rebuilding team, even though it was stated that Cody Kessler will be the starter in the upcoming OTAs.
“For us, there’s kind of no pride in authorship at our quarterback position,” vice president of football operations Sashi Brown said last week in an appearance at the Press Club of Cleveland. "Whoever can fill it and sustain it and play it well over a period of time will be our quarterback.”
"He's done a good job," head coach Hue Jackson said regarding Osweiler's offseason work. "He's been great in the room with the guys. He's been a good person in the building. We're going to continue to allow him to do that and see what he has to show for us and kind of go from there."
Along with Kessler and Osweiler, Kevin Hogan and rookie DeShone Kizer are also on the roster at the all-important QB position. But, having options at that spot has proven to be a luxury for other franchises, and now Cleveland finds themselves with an influx of talent.
"I think, in this league, we all know you can't have enough good quarterbacks, enough guys to train at the position," Jackson said. "You never know how it's going to unfold, and things do happen, but [Osweiler is] competing."
While there’s plenty of time to go before Week 1 and there’s no certainty that Osweiler will even be on the team at that point, it’s important to know that his 23 NFL starts are 15 more than the other three quarterbacks combined (eight all by Kessler) and his 14 career wins are 14 more wins than the other three combined.
While Kessler has the edge now, it will certainly be a situation to watch throughout OTAs, the preseason and beyond.
Whoever Cleveland chooses, they can’t afford to get it wrong again.
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