There might not normally be a lot of heat on the Browns-Eagles game for Week 1 of the regular season. It’s two potentially bad teams going up against one another. But the draft-day drama is manufacturing a little bit of a rivalry.
First, there’s the obvious trade between the Eagles and the Browns. Philly moved up and took Carson Wentz, who they believe is the long-term future at quarterback. He’s since been named the starter for Week 1, after Sam Bradford was traded to the Vikings.
“We didn’t draft Carson Wentz because we didn’t think it was the right fit for our team at this time. There’s nothing more to it.”Browns coach Hue Jackson
Cleveland has a pretty, um, long history with not selecting good quarterbacks. They had a chance at Wentz and passed. Chief strategy officer Paul DePodesta explained his feelings on Wentz — in a nutshell, he won’t be a “top 20” quarterback in the NFL — and now coach Hue Jackson is doing the same.
“We didn’t draft Carson Wentz because we didn’t think it was the right fit for our team at this time,” Jackson told Mike Florio on PFT Live. “There’s nothing more to it. Obviously, that will make for great debate in the media, and that’s fine. Our singular focus right now is just preparing to face the Eagles.”
Neither DePodesta nor Jackson is coming out and bashing Wentz. But both made clear at one point during the offseason (DePodesta’s interview was from July, Jackson spoke on Tuesday morning) they don’t believe Wentz is a franchise quarterback.
If the Browns saw him as a guy who can carry a team, they would have stayed at No. 2 overall and taken him. They clearly didn’t, and believed it was best to acquire as many assets as possible in the search for a franchise quarterback.
Having Robert Griffin III on the roster — someone who both DePodesta and Jackson believe in — certainly helps.
And this isn’t a one-week thing where we decide immediately if the Browns and Eagles made a mistake. But there will be plenty of judgment coming from that game, especially if Wentz looks great or struggles against a questionable Browns defense.
Source: CBS Sports Headlines / Someone else with the Browns is pointing out why Carson Wentz wasn’t ‘the right fit’