NFL Draft 2012: Is Brandon Weeden Too Old for the Cleveland Browns?

Brian MurtaughAnalyst IApril 4, 2012

GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 02:  Brandon Weeden #3 of the Oklahoma State Cowboys throws a pass against the Stanford Cardinal  during the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl on January 2, 2012 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. Oklahoma State won 41-38 in overtime.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

The 2012 NFL Draft is quickly approaching, and the Cleveland Browns are keeping busy by hosting some of the top talents in this year's draft class at their team facility.

Former Oklahoma State quarterback Brandon Weeden is just one of the players set to make his way to Berea this week in hopes of building a relationship with the Browns front office and possibly working out one last time for team scouts.

Weeden is expected to be a late first-round or second-round selection by many NFL draft experts, and many believe that he could be ready to start early in his professional career. Scouts agree that Weeden has the experience necessary to be a team leader and has the ability to make all the throws at the NFL level.

However, there are concerns with the fact that Weeden will be 28 years old when the 2012 NFL season kicks off in September. If the Browns were to take a chance on him, they would likely choose to sit Weeden in favor of Colt McCoy for the upcoming season and may even place Seneca Wallace higher on the depth chart, depending on the preferences of the coaching staff.

In comparison, McCoy will turn 26 a week before the regular season begins and will already have two years of NFL experience under his belt. Assuming that McCoy plays the entire 2012 season, Weeden will be a 29 year-old quarterback with no major game experience in 2013. Even more concerning is that many quarterbacks are set to retire by their mid-30's, and that would not give Cleveland much of a window for Weeden's success.

Cleveland would have to bank on the fact that Weeden can be productive early in his NFL career, and the Browns would also have to use a second-day draft pick in order to acquire his talents. For a team like Cleveland that has so many positions of need, that proposition seems a bit risky. Plus, it may be hard for any quarterback to have immediate success on a team with so many offensive holes and a new offensive coordinator.

Weeden started two full seasons at Oklahoma State and threw for almost 10,000 yards. Even more impressive, Weeden connected on 75 career touchdown passes opposed to only 27 interceptions.

Kirk Cousins, the fifth ranked quarterback in the draft class, threw for a little over 9,000 yards and 66 touchdowns while playing roughly the same amount of snaps as Weeden. Cousins will also be four years younger than Weeden when the 2012 season begins.

The Browns are always looking for new quarterback talent, and according to early indications, this year's draft will be more of the same. Cleveland will have to be careful with the quarterback they add for this season and will have to be ready to live with the consequences if their talents to not translate into immediate wins.


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