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Browns Acquire QB Tyrod Taylor, Trade DeShone Kizer To Packers For CB Damarious Randall

So the Cleveland Browns are getting antsy ahead of the start of the new league year, it would seem. With a wealth of draft picks and salary cap at their disposal, they have spent this Friday afternoon acquiring players via trade, although the trades cannot officially be completed until next week.

Earlier today, we reported that the Browns have sent two draft picks to the Miami Dolphins for wide receiver Jarvis Landry, whom the Dolphins had given the non-exclusive franchise tag with the intention of trading. Cleveland proved to be their dancing partner, barring an unforeseen setback.

Now, perhaps, they have found the next quarterback to throw to him. they are sending their natural third-round draft pick, 65th overall in the 2018 NFL Draft, to the Buffalo Bills in exchange for Tyrod Taylor, who returns to the AFC North after spending his first four seasons with the Baltimore Ravens.

According to multiple reports from Ian Rapoport, Adam Schefter, and others, the two sides have an agreement in principle.

Earlier this offseason, the Bills picked up Taylor’s $6 million roster bonus, believing that doing so rather than releasing him would give them the opportunity to trade for him, and now they have—again, barring an unforeseen setback.

Taylor had a cap hit of $18,080,000 in 2018 scheduled for Buffalo. He originally signed a five-year, $90 million extension in 2016, but it included an option that was not exercised in 2017. The deal was renegotiated to a two-year, $30.5 million deal. Including his $6 million signing bonus, he will earn a base salary of $10 million.

Of course, given that this is the Browns, who botched a trade for AJ McCarron last year, an unforeseen setback is definitely in play.

Now the question becomes what the Browns do from here. I don’t expect that they via Tyrod Taylor as ‘the guy’. If anything, perhaps this reflects their intention to skip over the free agent quarterback market for McCarron, Kirk Cousins, Case Keenum, and others, and rather focus on the quarterbacks in the draft.

They have two of the top four picks in the draft, after all, so they are bound to be able to get at least one of the top four quarterback prospects in a class that is generally considered to be above average for the position.

This does bear some resemblance to Hue Jackson’s first season with the Browns. They brought in Robert Griffin III rather than pursuing the top prospects in the draft, trading out of the second spot in the draft where Carson Wentz was selected.

He was signed to a modest two-year deal, but only saw one of those two years. Granted, he spent most of his one season in Cleveland injured, but I don’t think anybody outside of the city was really expecting Griffin to take the reins and run with it.

Update: On top of that, coming in just now, the Browns have also reportedly made a trade for Green Bay Packers cornerback Damarious Randall, who was a first-round pick just a couple of years ago. There are currently TEN trades that have been made prior to the start of the new league year, three of them with the Browns…and none of them are yet official.

Rapoport added that it was last year’s second-round pick, quarterback DeShone Kizer, whom the Browns moved in exchange for Randall, who is entering his fourth season. Cleveland will get to decide whether or not the pick up the former first-rounder’s fifth-year option as Green Bay moves ahead with Davon House and Kevin King. Schefter added that they swapped fourth- and fifth-round picks.

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