Just a couple years ago, it appeared that the Browns had an embarrassment of young quarterback riches with Derek Anderson having a huge 2007 year, putting up over 3,700 yards passing, 29 touchdowns, and a more than respectable 82.5 passer rating.
Not bad for a guy in his first year as a starter.
At the same time, the Browns had pulled off what many considered to be a brilliant draft by selecting stalwart left tackle Joe Thomas at the No. 3 pick, where many had guessed them to take QB Brady Quinn, only to find him still available nearly 20 picks later.
At that point, they traded up and nabbed him at the No. 22 spot.
In retrospect, the Thomas pickup was the right call for the Browns, and he has started every game for them at left tackle since, missing out on rookie of the year honors because of the spectacular year of Adrian Peterson, but consistently putting up Pro Bowl caliber performances year in and year out.
So these moves earned the Browns marvellous draft grades, but Anderson's subsequent huge year threw a wrench in the works that was never quite extracted.
All of a sudden, the Browns had traded up for a QB that they didn't even need, and an uncomfortable rivalry developed between their two young signal callers, as each time one of these players faltered, fans immediately called for the other.
A couple disastrous seasons followed for the Browns which culminated with Anderson being outright released recently (a good pickup for somebody) with the assumption being that this now paved the way for Quinn as the future Browns' QB.
Not so fast.
It is now being reported that the Browns are actively shopping Quinn and his days in Cleveland are nearing to an end.
It is also being reported that the Browns may be interested in securing a QB in the upcoming draft, possibly with the No. 7 pick that they own in the first round.
That makes them yet another team in the top 10 that may be looking for a QB, and with Saint Louis still seemingly bent on snatching up Bradford, reportedly Washington (No. 4), Seattle (No. 6), Buffalo (No. 9), and now Cleveland (No. 7) may all be in a buying mood.
This creates an interesting scenario as it is often difficult to move off the No. 2 pick because of the cost associated with it and the difficulty of acquiring equal value.
However, when there is a bidding war, the rules become fundamentally redefined.
First, teams looking to trade up into the high first round will only do it for someone like a QB who generally demands that kind of money anyway, so a move isn't out of the realm of feasibility.
Second, the laws of supply and demand kick in and can raise the asking price to the point where it might really make sense for the Lions to forego their "can't miss" shot at Ndamukong Suh.
Now I've already gone on record as saying that the Lions should be actively shopping this pick, while noting that they also shouldn't just be giving it away for nothing.
But as more and more teams in the top of the draft seemingly have QB issues to address, and with the Lions still full of so many holes, I've got to say that it's becoming more likely that a trade scenario might work out.
This is not neglecting of Suh or even Okung (if that's your pleasure), more an embracing of an incredibly deep draft full of immeasurable potential.
I've written about that aspect of the 2010 draft here , but in the end we'll have to wait and see how it all unfolds.
According to ESPN, there's 42 days 23 hours 29 minutes and 38 seconds left until the draft begins.
Any number of things can happen between now and then, including unexpected free agent moves, small time trades, and priority changes. The Browns may satiate their QB needs in whatever deal they can work out for Quinn.
What I do know, however, is that the emergence of the Browns as a potential trading partner puts the Lions in an even stronger position to wheel and deal, and trade or not, is going to make for an entertaining draft.
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