The Cleveland Browns have been left in a certain mess after the Mike Holmgren and Tom Heckert era; now Joe Banner and Michael Lombardi are coming in to start the patch work.
What have Holmgren and Heckert left?
A 29-year-old second-year quarterback as the starter who can potentially be beaten out by Jason Campbell, a former Bear through the Oakland Raiders and Washington Redskins.
The only highlights on offense you can talk about with the Browns are Trent Richardson, a strong enough offensive line anchored by Joe Thomas and Alex Mack and a second-year deep threat receiver in Josh Gordon. The only issue with all of this, is the fact that a starting-caliber quarterback is not present.
Greg Little is not a No. 1 receiver at the moment -- is that because of poor quarterback play? More than likely, however, he has shown that he is not capable of making the plays when required. Trent Richardson had a stellar rookie season, although he had to fight through numerous injuries to do so.
The other side of the ball is where this season can work for the Browns. Barkevious Mingo will fit the Browns’ new 3-4 system like a glove as an edge rushing linebacker. Joe Haden can hopefully stay on the field for a full season to shut down one side of the field, with support at the second level coming from T.J. Ward. The Browns have some skilled players on defense.
The main issue with the Browns is of course, where it has been since Graham Otto graced the position, quarterback. It has long been debated that the Browns should never have drafted Weeden and instead taken Russell Wilson in the second or third. We all know that if the Browns' staff had a time machine, they would do exactly that.
Finishing his rookie season with a 72.6 QB rating, Weeden was highly unimpressive. A TD-INT stat line of 14-17 is also another trait that you do not want from a starting QB. Weeden so far has been a high-draft-price bust. He has had one season and the general rule of thumb is to give at least three seasons before passing judgement, at 29, Weeden does not get that option, he is a win now draftee. Weeden is a bust.
The Browns have nothing to lose by shopping around practice squads to see what rookies are easily attainable. Several quarterbacks went undrafted in the 2013 Draft; Jordan Rodgers was taken by the Jaguars post draft -- however with Gabbert, Henne and Arizona State undrafted QB Matt Scott, it is hard to see him on that roster.
The Browns would have nothing to lose by bringing in Jordan Rodgers, the family name can help, and he has the pedigree.
Could former Jets QB Tim Tebow be headed to Cleveland? It could be a perfect fit. Tebow would open up an option game with Richardson and can be a dual threat. Tebow would win more games for Cleveland than Weeden or Campbell would combined.
Weeden has been given the lock of incumbent starter, however if Michael Lombardi was smart, he would bring Tebow in just for a look, he can be a better player than Weeden, look what he did for Denver when he got his chance.
At the end of the day, throwing mechanics mean nothing if you can win a ball game. Being a pretty passer sometimes is not enough to get you a Lombardi trophy, you need to be a WINNER something Cleveland have not been in a very long time.