With the NFL preseason already halfway over, the latest Cleveland Browns rumors suggest they are now looking to trade quarterback Brock Osweiler. After seeing what their rookie NFL draft pick has been able to do in his time on the field during exhibition games, it appears that Cleveland is entertaining the possibility of a deal for the veteran QB they acquired months ago. Since rookie draft pick DeShone Kizer has impressed his coach and has been given another start, it seems like the team is putting trust in their young talent. Here are the latest details on the Cleveland Browns’ quarterback situation involving rookie DeShone Kizer and veteran Brock Osweiler.
A report on Wednesday evening indicated that league sources told ESPN‘s Jeremy Fowler that the Browns “have renewed their attempt to trade veteran Brock Osweiler.” This news comes after Browns head coach Hue Jackson has decided to start his rookie QB DeShone Kizer for the third-straight game of the preseason. That game is scheduled for Saturday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Jackson said he feels that Kizer has “gotten better each and every week” and is “showing the characteristics that I look for in a quarterback.” That’s certainly a vote of confidence for the 21-year-old player.
It could mean that Brock Osweiler is dealt to his second team within this year. The Cleveland Browns obtained Osweiler via an NFL trade ahead of the draft. Back in early March, the Houston Texans sent Osweiler to Cleveland in exchange for their 2017 sixth-round pick and a 2018 second-round pick. In exchange, Houston received a 2017 fourth-round compensatory pick. With that pick, the Texans ended up selecting defensive tackle Carlos Watkins from Clemson University.
For his preseason thus far, Brock Osweiler has thrown 12-of-22 passes for 67 yards, with no points scored by the first-team offense on any of the possessions. He isn’t expected to play on Saturday but hasn’t seemed too concerned with his position on the roster. When asked about the possibility of a trade from the Cleveland Browns, Osweiler talked about his main focus.
“I’ve told you guys all along, I’m always going to just focus on the things that I can control. Right now, that’s being a great teammate, that’s continuing to prepare, be a pro, stay in the playbook and continue to strive to be a better player every day.”
Osweiler entered the league as the No. 57 pick in the second round of the 2012 NFL Draft. He was a member of the Denver Broncos through the 2015 season and even replaced star QB Peyton Manning at one point. Osweiler would end up signing a deal with the Texans in 2016. He helped guide Houston to the AFC Divisional round game against the New England Patriots in the 2016 postseason, but they would eventually lose 34-16. The Browns were able to acquire Osweiler this past March in the aforementioned deal as they were trying to prepare themselves with a choice at the QB slot. However, they also were able to draft DeShone Kizer as the No. 52 pick in the NFL Draft and he has shown glimpses of his potential so far.
Based on the preseason, it appears that Cleveland is ready to take a gamble on their rookie QB being their leader on the field. The Browns ended up with a league-worst record of 1-15 last season earning them the top overall draft pick. Heading into the new season, they seem to be in a position where they can take a quarterback risk as they look to build for the future. Giving Kizer the early nod of confidence along with the valuable experience he’ll gain calling plays could lead him to become the top quarterback of the 2017 draft class. However, the Houston Texans, the same team that gave up Osweiler, may also have a star on their roster in DeShaun Watson.
Kizer, a 6-foot-4 rookie from Notre Dame, has completed 19-of-31 passes so far this preseason for 258 yards and a touchdown. Watson has thrown 18-of-35 completed passes for 281 yards. However, the Texans seem like they are intent on starting Tom Savage over Watson. That gives Kizer an advantage in terms of playing time. It should be interesting to see as the season moves on where Brock Osweiler will be playing, and whether Kizer or Watson ends up with the better rookie season.
[Featured Image by Joe Robbins/Getty Images]