“Robert Griffin III has found the landing spot to try to relaunch his career as an NFL quarterback. Griffin signed a contract with the Cleveland Browns on Thursday, the team announced. The deal is worth $15 million over two years, with a maximum value of $22 million” – USATODAY
I love the NFL, I mean the headlines don’t get any better than this, am I right? The former Heisman Winner from Baylor who was drafted 2nd overall has now signed with one of the teams who was ready to give up a lot in order to acquire him back in 2012. By most peoples accounts, Robert Griffins best days of football are behind him, and you may or not be right but I’m going to play devils advocate here (mind you I’m not a huge proponent of RG3 in the first place) and say that this could ultimately be a brilliant signing and give you my best 3 reasons why this acquisition could put an end to Clevelands quarterback woes for the foreseeable future.
*The deal is very team friendly
There is literally zero risk in this signing for the browns. it’s a two-year contract that has a $3.5 million signing bonus, $6.75 million guaranteed, a base value of $15 million and a maximum value with performance incentives of $22 million, so they aren’t constricted to a long contract and wont take a huge hit on the cap of they decide to part ways before the contract is up.The browns currently hold the 2nd overall and 32nd overall pick in this years draft, they could draft his successor right away with Carson Wentz or Jared Goff with the #2 pick or just fill a need with that pick and grab another developmental QB like Christian Hackenberg or Paxton Lynch at the end of the first round. Whichever QB they decide to choose, he is most likely going to have to sit behind RG3 right away and if Griffin crumbles again like he did in Washington the browns will have plan b ready to step in and play.
* Hue Jackson
When the browns announced they had signed Hue Jackson as the new head coach, it was somewhat of an eyebrow raising moment. I thought to myself “wow they actually got a good head coach for once”. Hue Jackson is a no bullshit kind of dude, he is not going to put up with any immaturity out of RG3, he’s already said himself that he believes Griffins experience in Washington should’ve humbled him. There isn’t a Dan Snyder around to pamper up his prized 2nd overall pick anymore, he isn’t the same RG3 on the redskins that will suit up in brown and orange this fall, and the sooner he realizes that, the better off he will be. Now of far as running an offense, Hue Jackson is one of the best in the business right now. Ask Andy Dalton, whos had the best statistical seasons of his career under Jackson and who he probably owes a good portion of that huge deal to. The Bengals offense was 7th in scoring (27 points per game) in 2015 and both the passing and rushing stats ranked in the top 10 and total yards was over 370 yards per game this past season, even AJ McCarron played well in his short tenure as the starter. His time in Oakland proved he is completely capable of leading an NFL team, in 2010 they went 8-8 in his lone season as head coach and boasted the 6th ranked scoring offense that year. Jackson is predicated on having a good running game to relive the quarterback of pressure, and he already has some tools to work with such as Duke Johnson, Isiah Crowell, and Gary Barnidge, granted there are some holes to fill along the offensive line and adding some depth at skill positions but the browns are definitely trending in the right direction now.
Shortly after the browns signed RG3, Josh Gordon, who is currently waiting for reinstatement into the league from a year long ban for violating the substance abuse policy, tweeted out that him and griffin perfected the deep ball from their time playing together at Baylor university, and that they now have a chance to build on that chemistry. Josh Gordon is hands down one of the most talented players in the NFL, let alone being one of the best wide receivers on the field. This guy has sky high potential (LOL), when he’s not blazing it down off the field, he is blazing by some of the elite corners this game has to offer, josh has always had the ability to be the leagues best wide out, he just needs to keep his head clean and lay off the pot and partying for a while. Gordon requested for reinstatement a few months ago and we are still waiting to see whether or not Goodell the clown…. I mean commissioner, will accept the request, it is widely believed that he will issue the reinstatement for Gordon who has had no signs of trouble in a long time. I’m anxious to see what kind of passing attack the browns are capable of with Rg3 at the helm and now reunited with his old teammate from college, its not going to win them a Super Bowl but it might some people win a fantasy championship this year. There is a lot potential in this browns offense going forward.
So there is a lot of work for Robert Griffin and the Browns to handle this offseason, it will be very interesting to see which direction they go in the draft and what kind of players they want to add to a team that isn’t as talent deprived as some people think. I believe the pieces are there for them to compete now in the AFC North and quite possibly contend for a playoff spot in 2016.