Around the NFL  

 

Haslam: Hue Jackson's track record is pretty good

Print

The Cleveland Browns raised eyebrows after bypassing more highly regarded quarterback prospects to select USC's Cody Kessler in the third round of the draft.

"You've got to trust me on this one," new coach Hue Jackson explained, responding to critics.

Jackson certainly has the support of his owner.

"His track record's been pretty good," team owner Jimmy Haslam said, via The Plain Dealer. "You all understand as well as we do the importance of that position. ... I think we have a head coach who understands talent at that position but equally as important how to coach them."

While thrusting Andy Dalton into the midseason MVP conversation last season, Jackson also developed AJ McCarron into one of the league's most promising backups.

Prior to his stint in Cincinnati, Jackson was instrumental in the development of Joe Flacco and coaxed the best stretch of Jason Campbell's career.

Does he envision Kessler as a Dalton-like distributor, capable of excelling in a multi-dimensional offense once the Browns surround him with weapons?

"When Andy Dalton came out of TCU, he was rated a much higher prospect," NFL Films senior producer Greg Cosell said last week on The Shutdown podcast. "But Andy Dalton did not have a big arm -- certainly did not have a power arm. That's the concern with Cody Kessler. He does not have what you would call very good arm strength. But, again, now you're talking Hue Jackson, knowing that he's been successful in Cincinnati with Andy Dalton. ... It's the same style of quarterback."

Conventional wisdom has long held that Browns quarterbacks must come equipped with howitzers to cut through the strong winds and harsh elements that wreak havoc on the AFC North in the later months of the season. Time will tell if Jackson and the new Cleveland front office can succeed in bucking football convention.

Print