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The Quarterback Question

With seven picks in the coming 2011 NFL draft should the Browns be thinking about drafting a QB and if so, should it be sooner or later? “I believe in the young guy we have,” Holmgren said to The Plain Dealer on Wednesday. But, if Holmgren sees something he likes it wouldn’t be a surprise if he pulled the trigger on someone like Blaine Gabbert, Cam Newton or Ryan Mallett.

Objectively, Colt McCoy has a long way to go before fans and the organization can comfortably say “He’s the guy.” But, he has proven that he is a solid leader and doesn’t buckle under pressure. Those are the characteristics needed of a successful QB in this league and in this regard he grades very high.

The major issue with Colt McCoy is with his ability to remain healthy. There is no doubt that he needs to add some weight and work on his arm strength. Overall, though, with a solid offensive line and an upgrade at the WR position, much of those fears could be alleviated in the West Coast offense which lives off precise short timing patterns and the receiver’s ability to get yards after the catch.

That being the case, it is a much better strategy to find a solid backup QB in free agency and devote the available draft picks on a WR and defense, defense, defense. If smart picks are made on draft day, the team could quickly rebuild itself. 2011 could be used as a year of transition and teaching where much of the expected growing pains could be forgiven.

Flash forward to 2012 and Holmgren would have a much better picture of what the Browns are turning into and have much more leeway to find the QB to take us into the future. The situation in Cleveland would also be a much more stable place for a young quarterback to come in and succeed. If nothing else, drafting well at this position in 2012 could create a great situation where two young QB’s in Cleveland could push each other to excel. It didn’t hurt Montana / Young or Brees / Rivers.

In the end, Holmgren has proven he has a plan. This year seems to be about getting a WR and defense and that should be encouraged. Cleveland does not need another controversy at the quarterback position. That story line has been played out, for now. It is time to make strides keeping our eyes firmly focused on the main goal, winning a Super Bowl. It can be done. It just can’t be rushed. In Holmgren we trust

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