The Cleveland Browns are searching for the future of the franchise’s most important position: the quarterback.
So one would think that they’d be going through every avenue possible to make sure that if they find one, he’s the right one.
It’s pro day season as players look to show off their skills in a scripted manner before coaches, scouts and executives at their respective school.
Tuesday, North Carolina hosted their pro day and the football world was zoned in on arguably the top quarterback in the draft, Mitchell Trubisky.
News broke right before the event started that Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson as well as VP of Football Operations Sashi Brown would not be attending however the team sent scouts to North Carolina.
This is the second quarterback’s pro day they’ve elected not to attend so far this offseason, last week they didn’t attend Clemson’s to watch Deshaun Watson as they were conducting a private workout with another quarterback prospect. VP of Player Personnel Andrew Berry as well as some scouts went to Watson’s workout.
Some fans and media personalities, most notably ESPN Cleveland’s Aaron Goldhammer teed off on the Browns for acting like they “don’t care” about the quarterback position.
I don’t think the Browns are trying to be smarter than everyone. The pro days have become an over hyped event since the draft has become a major sports event every year.
JaMarcus Russell allegedly had the greatest pro day ever back in 2007 when he showed that he can throw the ball 65 yards while kneeling.
Then there was Johnny Manziel’s in 2014 when he did his in football pads in a helmet rather than the traditional t-shirt and shorts. Some Browns fans and Goldhammer were all giddy about that from what I recall.
And then just last year when the Browns did attend Jared Goff and Carson Wentz’s pro days and got attention for spraying water on a football to see how the prospects were able to throw a wet football due to the conditions Cleveland presents during the fall and winter.
I’m not saying the pro days aren’t important, the on field stuff isn’t important but the teams can do some background checks while they’re in the city of the school a prospect attended. Check out the local bars, restaurants and other establishments to see how prospects are off the field.
Teams can do that on their own time anytime, not just a pro day but you better make sure to do your homework before deciding on selecting a player in the NFL draft
Browns should know that all too well when they didn’t do any background checks on 2014 first round pick Justin Gilbert and drafted him based on tape and a one-off meeting between then general manager and Gilbert a week before the draft.
As for the quarterbacks, the Browns and possibly all the NFL teams like to bring them in for a draft visit as well as conducting their own private workout. They can get their hands on them more by putting them on the chalkboard or erase board and making the prospects draw up plays, like how Jon Gruden does on his “QB Camp” show seen on ESPN.
The private workout also lets the teams do what they want the prospect to do on the field, not by the player or his college coach’s choices. They get a close up look as to how they can possibly master the NFL offense of that respective team.
And as for what the Browns could possibly be doing besides attending pro days, they could be conducting private workouts like they did last week instead of going to Watson’s pro day. They also could be hosting free agents for a visit as they try to add more talent to the roster.
So for those that aren’t getting angry at the Browns, pump the brakes. They aren’t sitting around twiddling their thumbs in Berea and letting time pass, they’re putting the work in and trying to find the future signal caller of the Browns.
And don’t get mad if they don’t attend Notre Dame’s Deshone Kizer, Texas Tech’s Pat Mahomes, or any other quarterback’s pro days. It’s all apart of their process, just pray that hopefully their process is the right one this time.