When the Cleveland Browns drafted quarterback Brandon Weeden with one of their two first-round picks this past April, it was assumed that he’d be their quarterback of the future. In his first NFL game, though, he made people think otherwise.
In fact, Weeden was so bad in his first taste of NFL action that rumors are starting to surface that the Browns might just be players in the sweepstakes to land USC quarterback Matt Barkley this upcoming April.
Arguably the top college quarterback right now, Barkley is believed to be a lock for the No. 1 pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. He’s a proven winner with great arm strength, accuracy and leadership. Some knock him for his reliance on All-American teammates and a screen-heavy offense, but Barkley has the physical and mental tools to be a difference-maker at the next level.
If the Browns continue to play the way they did in Week 1, there’s a good chance that the first overall pick could be in their possession at season’s end. If that ended up being the case, would the Browns really be willing to throw in the towel after spending a first-rounder on Weeden only a year earlier? It might seem unreasonable, but stranger things have happened in the NFL.
Weeden was downright awful on Sunday when his Browns were handed an embarrassing 17-16 loss by the Philadelphia Eagles. He completed only 12 of his 35 passes for 118 yards and four – yes, that’s correct – four interceptions. When the final whistle blew, Weeden was left with an ugly 5.1 passer rating. It was undoubtedly one of the worst debuts ever for an NFL rookie quarterback.
His gruesome performance even made fans wonder if he was really a better option than Colt McCoy, the Browns’ so-so starter for the past two seasons.
There are still 16 games remaining for Weeden to prove that he wasn’t a waste. If the Browns were to have the opportunity to select Barkley, though, you have to believe that they’d take a good hard look at the USC gunslinger.