Mike Pettine: Josh McCown favorite to start at QB

In a radio interview on Monday, Browns head coach Mike Pettine said what we all knew was true: Josh McCown is the heavy favorite to be the team's starting quarterback.

While he stopped short of this assertion in the past, it was largely because the draft wasn't over yet. But now it is, and the Browns are left with the same depth chart at the position as they were before.

Johnny Manziel is fresh out of a 10-week stay in a rehab facility. McCown is a stable veteran with a career completion percentage near 60. This wasn't difficult.

"We just look back to when he was in Chicago, when he had a pretty good supporting cast around him, and he was able to be more than functional. He had a very successful year," Pettine said on WKRK-FM, via the Beacon Journal. "When you build the team right, it minimizes the importance of the quarterback."

The last part is by far the most interesting and explains the Browns' philosophy heading into the draft. Two years in a row, general manager Ray Farmer has sidestepped excellent wide receiver classes in favor of cornerbacks, offensive linemen and defensive tackles. Why? There's no reason to fully invest in the passing game if it's not going to work the right way.

This might sound backwards, but building up both lines and solidifying the defensive backfield (Justin Gilbert has a long way to go) is the only way for this team to be successful until a difference-making option presents itself at quarterback.

For once, it sounds like the Browns are building a team the right way. Any of their countless starting quarterback options might have been the answer over the last 16 years, but the bones of the roster were not solid.

Why not take care of that first?

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