September 28, 2016
The Cleveland Browns have had 26 starting quarterbacks take the field since 1999, seven above the Chicago Bears, next on the list. Many young promising talents, from Johnny Manziel to Colt McCoy, are forcibly removed from their college successes and thrown into the tragic graveyard of Cleveland Browns quarterbacks. The Browns struggled with a mere two seasons over .500 from 1999-2015, and the monstrous trail of quarterbacks is an obvious result of this failure. In similar fashion, the *cough* St. Louis *cough* Los Angeles Rams have had 18 starting quarterbacks take the field during the regular season, with a .441 win percentage since 1999. Explore the sad story of all 26 Browns quarterbacks, face by face, story by story, and loss after loss in the timeline above.
In stark comparison to these struggling programs, teams who consistently find themselves deep in the playoffs have solid, reliable quarterbacks. Prime examples are the Patriots’ Tom Brady or the Broncos’ Peyton Manning (formerly). Without a good offensive core, there is not much a team can do, resulting as to why the Browns so often change their starter. I understand defense wins championships, but a linebacker can’t fill in to drop 30-yard dimes (or can he?)
It isn’t like the Browns have been consistently seeing naturally untalented quarterbacks. There are many on the list who, yes, went undrafted, going on to make one-start NFL careers, but there are also many who were Heisman Trophy (college MVP) candidates or even Heisman Trophy winners coming into the league. Take Manziel, Heisman winner at Texas A&M, first ever to win it as a freshman. Then, as we have seen so many times before, he makes less than a season worth’s amount of starts in the NFL, and disappears from the football world.
The newest addition to the list is Cody Kessler, adding to the list of now 26. Including Manziel’s week 16 loss last season against the Chiefs, up until week three of this season, the Browns have played Austin Davis, Johnny Football himself, Robert Griffin III, Josh McCown and Cody Kessler. If the pattern continues in week four of the 2016 season, the Browns will set a record for being the first team to have six different starters in six consecutive games. Not a record anyone would be proud of, especially being 0-5 since the streak began. Congrats Cleveland, at least you’re really good at something; being terrible.
So now, for the betterment of the Cleveland Browns organization and the competitiveness of NFL football, spin the wheel to choose the next starting quarterback for the Cleveland Browns. Anything has to be better than what already happened to this poor organization.