Earlier this offseason after the Philadelphia Eagles won the Super Bowl, I threw out the idea that the Browns should go after quarterback Nick Foles, who led the Eagles to the championship with a fanatastic postseason run.
Well, a report from NFL Network’s Michael Silver on Tuesday says that the Browns did indeed pursue the veteran quarterback before the league year began.
Shortly before the start of the league year, the Philadelphia Eagles turned down a potential trade that would have sent Super Bowl LII MVP Nick Foles to the Cleveland Browns for the 35th overall pick in the 2018 draft, according to three sources familiar with the talks.
Before rejecting the deal, two sources said, the Eagles ran the scenario by Foles, who said he preferred to remain in Philadelphia. In April, the Eagles and Foles agreed to a re-worked contract that gave him a $2 million bonus for 2018 and allowed him to earn up to $14 million in incentives, while creating a “mutual option” for him to remain with the team in 2019. (Basically, Foles is free to leave if he pays back the $2 million.)
Eventually, the Browns sent the 65th overall pick to Buffalo for quarterback Tyrod Taylor who is currently the projected starting quarterback and team also drafted Baker Mayfield with the first overall selection and signed Drew Stanton as they gutted the 2016 quarterback depth chart and added three new faces.
With the 35th overall pick that they offered to Philadelphia, the Browns selected running back Nick Chubb who should have a big role in the running game alongside Carlos Hyde and Duke Johnson.
It would’ve been interesting how the potential draft plans would’ve changed if the Eagles or Foles would’ve accepted the trade to Cleveland. Giving up a high second round pick for a veteran starting quarterback might’ve stirred the organization in another direction with the top overall selection such as drafting Saquon Barkley at #1.
In the end, the Browns are likely better off with how their offseason has been. Adding a solid veteran quarterback in Taylor and then drafting Mayfield at #1 could pay off in a big way for not just the 2018 season but the next 5-10 years down the line if Mayfield is as good as advertised.
Also add in the fact that the Browns drafted a good and potentially great prospect in Nick Chubb who could be a solid running back for the next three to five seasons in this Browns offense surrounded with play makers.
I do also find it interesting that Silver was the one who reported the story.
Yes, he did cite three sources gave him the information for the story but we all know that Silver is a close friend of Browns head coach Hue Jackson and while Jackson may not have been in on the negotiations, it makes you wonder if this story was leaked out when general manager John Dorsey has been trying to stop the leaks in Berea since he took over last December.