According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, while I am sure there are none who are celebrating another man’s injury, there is apparently a sort of sense of relief among some within the Cleveland Browns’ organization in the wake of the injury suffered by quarterback Robert Griffin III, in the sense that it will force the team to move on to another option.
Schefter reports that members of the organization indicate that new head coach Hue Jackson “was so focused on righting Griffin”, the former second-overall draft pick, that it was a hindrance and a blinder as to any other scenario beyond that, and that the injury “could turn out to be a good thing for the franchise”.
Over the course of the offseason, the Browns signed Griffin to a mid-level deal, a two-year contract worth about $12 million, and Jackson did not officially name him the starting quarterback until training camp, ahead of last year’s starter and, for the most part, a career backup, Josh McCown, as well as rookie third-round pick Cody Kessler.
It certainly was not an unknown variable over the course of the offseason in discussing Jackson and his potential relationship with Griffin, so to be given the impression that the sort of quarterback guru may have on some level become obsessed with a sort of redemption project should not be seen as wholly surprising.
Still, there is a long way to go before anything of note develops. The Browns placed Griffin on injured reserve, but the extent of his injury is still unclear, as it pertains to whether or not he would be able to return this season. He is supposed to be re-evaluated in three or four weeks to determine what course of action to take going forward for this season.
There is also the fact that he is still under contract for next season as well, and it seems fairly unlikely that either McCown or Kessler suddenly lock up a role as a long-term option at quarterback for the Browns, regardless of whether or not Griffin is any more viable an option.
If the Browns do look once again to uncover their 26th starting quarterback—at least—since 1999, however, then it must be noted, as if the number of starting quarterbacks over that period of time is not indication enough, that they do not have a good track record in this field at all.
In Schefter’s article, he notes that the Browns were interested in three quarterbacks over the course of this offseason: first-overall pick Jared Goff, Kessler, and Griffin. They ended up getting two of them, and when they could not get the first, they traded out of the position with which they could have acquired Carson Wentz, whom they did not grade well—nor Dak Prescott.
Whether or not another man’s injury is ultimately a “good thing” for the organization hinges on a number of variables, not the least of which is the ability to actually subsequently find a good quarterback, and on that front, they have fared worse than—well, literally every other team.