Joe Thomas: Browns have to get this QB decision right
As sad as left tackle Joe Thomas is about the way the personal story of Johnny Manziel is ending, he also has a job to do.
And he has a pretty good idea that when he lines up this season, he’s going to be blocking for yet another first-round quarterback.
“Well, I think we’re in really good shape right now,’' Thomas said (of the Browns, presumably with a straight face) to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “Obviously going into my 10th year I wish this was the position we were in my second or third year. We’re probably going to draft a first-round quarterback, the best quarterback in the draft or the second best at worst. And we’ve got a guy in Josh McCown who’s proven he can be a good player when he’s starting and healthy.
"[He’s] a tremendous mentor. You’re not going to find a better mentor as a quarterback in the NFL, and he’s better than you could do as a quarterback coach because he’s actually on the field showing the kid how to do it. So you’ve got hopefully the future of the franchise getting drafted in the first round and then you’ve got Josh mentoring him and coaching him along the way. I can’t see a better situation that the Browns could possibly be in than that.’'
Any quarterback they bring in during the draft will end up being the 25th different quarterback to start for the Browns since 1999, which makes it clear the problem there’s not just about Manziel. But Thomas said he was encouraged once he had a chance to sit down with new coach Hue Jackson. But he also knows that Jackson can only do so much.
“As long as you pick the right quarterback, if there is one out there, the future is really bright for the Cleveland Browns ‘cause it doesn’t really matter what you do with the rest of the team if don’t have a quarterback,” Thomas said. “I mean it’s great to hire a new coach and bring in free agents and stuff, but unless you solve the quarterback piece of the puzzle, you’ll be finding a new coach every two years.’'
And that’s what the Browns have been doing, for longer than Thomas’s tenure there.