Saturday, February 23, 2013

BROWNS LOOKING FOR NEW QB ... HOW ABOUT TERRELLE PRYOR?

Terrelle Pryor
TBT/Darla Dunkle-Hudnell
Brandon Weeden's chances of remaining as the Cleveland Browns' starting quarterback under the new regime, seems about as likely as an Israeli and a Palestinian holding hands by a campfire singing "Kumbaya."

Not gonna happen!

New owner Jimmy Haslam, president Joe Banner, GM Michael Lombardi, nor head coach Rob Chudzinski, have come out in support of Weeden, who continually regressed as his rookie season moved on in 2012.

It is no secret amongst NFL insiders that the Browns will be looking to upgrade at the quarterback position this offseason.

Many names have come up as potential successors to Weeden, including Alex Smith (49ers), Matt Moore (Dolphins) and Ryan Mallett (Patriots).

Naturally, Smith and Mallett are the most intriguing because Smith has worked with new Browns' offensive coordinator Norv Turner in San Francisco, while the strong-armed Mallett is a known favorite of Lombardi, and a nice fit for Chudzinski's vertical attack.

However, in order for the Browns to cop either Smith or Mallett, they must work out a trade with each players' respective team first.

Personally, I am not high on either player for the quarterback spot. I don't believe Smith has the arm strength to play in Cleveland during the late fall and winter months, while Mallett's mobility — much like Weeden's — makes him a liability in a game that has become more and more about speed and athleticism at the position.

Putting on my GM cap for a moment, I see a quarterback out there in the same situation as Smith and Mallett, who would be inexpensive, and would be a perfect match in the Browns new system ...

Terrelle Pryor.

The former Ohio State star — and current Oakland Raiders backup — is everything that Chudzinski wants leading his offense. In Carolina, Chudzinski put together a dynamic offensive package around dual-threat quarterback Cam Newton, a player with incredibly similar attributes as Pryor.

Using the eye test, Pryor and Newton are each 6-foot-5, 240-pounders, who possess live arms, incredible strength and wide receiver speed. In fact, Pryor has more speed and elusiveness than Newton, and although not as polished of a passer, still has the abilities to become a very formidable passing quarterback in this league.

Although Pryor has started in just one game as an NFL player — in the season finale last season against San Diego (200 yards, three touchdowns) — he is as dynamic of a player as there is in the league.

In three seasons at Ohio State, Pryor went 31-4 as a starter — including 2-0 in BCS bowl games, where he won Most Valuable Player honors in both outings. Pryor threw for 6,177 yards (3rd in school history) during his career for the Buckeyes and 57 touchdown passes (T-1st). He also added an all-time OSU record for quarterbacks with 2,164 yards rushing, as well as 17 scores. His career completion percentage of (.609) is the third-best in OSU history.

He was also unbeaten against arch-rival Michigan (3-0), where he guided the Buckeyes past the Wolverines by a combined score of 33-8. Pryor also led Ohio State to at least a share of the Big Ten title in every season which he played. 

Pryor is a winner, has the abilities and the drive to become a solid NFL quarterback. All he needs, in my opinion, is a chance to showcase his abilities on the big stage, just as Newton received from Chudzinski in Carolina.

The Browns need something different. They need a winner. They need a play-maker. They need a player to bring them into the 21st century.

They need Terrelle Pryor ... not another regurgitation of Colt McCoy (Smith) or Derek Anderson (Mallett).

For Cleveland — more than any other city in the league — status quo is no way to go.