American Football

After NFL draft: Browns could be Broncos backup option for big need

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NFL Combine
Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

Dorian Thompson-Robinson could fit well in Sean Payton’s system if Denver misses out on QB

As always, this year’s NFL draft is all about the quarterbacks. In most seasons that is true even when there isn’t a clear-cut first-rounder at the position. Quarterback is just that important.

The Chicago Bears seem locked into Caleb Williams while the Washington Commanders and New England Patriots could be addressing their need at quarterback with Drake Maye, Jayden Daniels or JJ McCarthy. Rumors persist that the Minnesota Vikings, New York Giants, Las Vegas Raiders and Denver Broncos are interested in moving up for a QB.

While the Cleveland Browns need a prove-it season from QB Deshaun Watson, they are set at the position going into 2024. Jameis Winston is the backup with Dorian Thompson-Robinson and Tyler Huntley filling out the room.

Interestingly, the Browns also brought in Joe Milton for a visit prior to this year’s draft. Milton profiles as a big-armed QB who could be developed but is likely a late-round pick this year.

Adding Huntley and visiting with Milton brought up questions about DTR’s future with the team after being selected in the fifth round. Given the supply and demand limits among the top of the quarterback class in the 2024 NFL draft, perhaps the Broncos could find their answer at the position by dealing for Cleveland’s second-year QB.

Currently, Denver is a mess:

With so few assets to work with, Sean Payton being unlikely to be willing to punt on the season and the lack of quality QBs available, trading a pick for DTR makes sense.

While we understand that Thompson-Robinson is far from the quarterback that Drew Brees was, they have similarities. Smaller-in-stature quarterbacks with quick releases who don’t go downfield much are able to do well in Payton’s system. DTR struggled being thrown into the fire as a rookie but showed upside in training camp and preseason games.

For Cleveland, while Winston and Huntley are only signed for this season, both are better fits as backups to Watson based on play style, specifically with their abilities to make plays down the field. If HC Kevin Stefanski is on board with and GM Andrew Berry is willing, recouping a fifth-round pick or higher after one year could work for the Browns.

With Denver lacking the trade-up capital and having Ryan Tannehill as the best of the options left on the market, taking a chance on DTR seems like a better option for the Broncos.


How would you feel if the Browns traded away DTR this quickly? What draft pick would be enough for you to make the move with the Broncos?

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