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Joshua Dobbs Continues To Impress For Browns During Preseason Play

Joshua Dobbs used to be a preseason superstar for the Pittsburgh Steelers in the fourth quarter. For those who would actually make it into the games that long, since the NFL often has them playing at night, the former Volunteer would at least provide some excitement, if nothing else.

As it turns out, he’s the same guy now that he’s with the Cleveland Browns. Starting the game for the defending third-place finishers in the AFC North a year ago, the sixth-year veteran completed 14 of 20 pass attempts for 141 yards, and he also rushed for 47 yards and a touchdown on four rushing attempts.

It is a continuation of what he began last week, going 10-for-13 for 108 yards and a touchdown against the Jacksonville Jaguars (and nine yards rushing on one attempt).

In other words, he probably doesn’t have to worry too much about Josh Rosen taking his roster spot once Deshaun Watson returns from his suspension. Jacoby Brissett was brought in to start while Watson is suspended, even though he has yet to take a snap during the preseason for some reason, but Dobbs will be the backup during that time.

A fourth-round draft pick by the Steelers back in 2017, Dobbs served as the third-string quarterback behind Landry Jones as a rookie before unseating the veteran a year later to serve as the primary backup in 2018. The prevailing opinion that training camp was that he would be the odd man out, the team having drafted Mason Rudolph at the time, but he defied the assumed odds.

Still, he held onto the backup job for only one season, entering 2019 as the number three, and then the team traded him one game into the year after the Jaguars lost Nick Foles for an extended period of time. Rather than getting a chance to start, however, Gardner Minshew, then a rookie, proved to be a more attractive option.

He remained in Jacksonville through the following offseason before he was released, at which point the Steelers re-signed him, and he was again the number three in 2020 for Pittsburgh. He spent the 2021 season on the Reserve/Injured List, however, with Dwayne Haskins as the new number three.

The team finally moved on from him again, this offseason, however, following the retirement of Ben Roethlisberger. They still had Rudolph and Haskins, but they signed Mitch Trubisky as a free agent and allowed Dobbs onto the market.

The Browns finally signed him on April 9 on a one-year, veteran-minimum deal, a couple of weeks after having signed Brissett, and three weeks after having traded for Watson. By then, they had already turned over, or begun preparations for turning over, their entire quarterback room, which would ultimately include trading away Baker Mayfield.

Until Watson returns, the depth chart is now Brissett, Dobbs, and Rosen. Perhaps some fans—some Steelers fans—are wondering if Dobbs might not start a game or two between now and then.

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