Without a proven quarterback on the roster, speculation has the club taking the first quarterback off the board -- likely either Cal's Jared Goff or North Dakota State's Carson Wentz. NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah, however, believes adding pending free agent Brock Osweiler would be a better move for Cleveland and new coach Hue Jackson.
"I think I would go the Osweiler route, just because you've seen him on an NFL field. The sample size is not large but you have seven games to look at this year, and I thought Brock actually played quite well when you break those games down. If you're the Cleveland Browns, where you're picking, now you can use that pick to get an impact player," Jeremiah said on NFL Network's "Path to the Draft". "Maybe you bring in a Jalen Ramsey to come in and just get a dynamite player there in your secondary. You have a lot of options. You could trade out of that pick, get some more assets. ... I would prefer that over taking (Goff or Wentz) in the draft."
Osweiler's availability on the market shouldn't be an issue. He will test the free-agent market rather than accepting a three-year, incentive-laden $45 million offer from the Broncos, NFL Media insider Ian Rapoport reported Monday. The Houston Texans have expressed interest in Osweiler as well, according to Rapoport.
"I look at the L.A. Rams and the roster they have without a quarterback, and I look at the Houston Texans and the roster they have without a quarterback," Jeremiah added. "(Osweiler) could be a real difference-maker, not only having a good year, but I'm talking about making a run to a championship with those two football teams."
The difference between Osweiler going to Cleveland or Houston could be a big one for the draft's top quarterbacks. The Texans don't pick until No. 22 overall, by which time both Goff, Wentz and perhaps Memphis' Paxton Lynch could already be drafted. If the Browns sign Osweiler, however, the draft-day wait figures to be lengthened for one or more of the top quarterbacks.