The recent comments from former UCLA coach Jim Mora regarding former UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen has invited speculation that Mora possibly is trying to help Rosen implement a strategy to avoid the Cleveland Browns. Per a source with knowledge of the situation, that’s not the case.
Mora was expressing his own opinions when commenting about Rosen, and in no way sending any messages directly or indirectly on Rosen’s behalf.
Here’s the most important point: Rosen will sign with and play for whichever team signs him, whether it’s the Browns or anyone else.
That said, it’s possible he’ll eventually decide that the Browns aren’t a good fit. While he has yet to accumulate sufficient information to reach that conclusion (he’ll visit Cleveland this week), Rosen would find a way to make his concerns known discreetly, if he ultimately has concerns. For now, he doesn’t.
Consider this much-scrutinized quote from Mora to Peter King of SI.com regarding Rosen: “He needs to be challenged intellectually so he doesn’t get bored. He’s a millennial. He wants to know why. Millennials, once they know why, they’re good. Josh has a lot of interests in life. If you can hold his concentration level and focus only on football for a few years, he will set the world on fire. He has so much ability, and he’s a really good kid.”
Apart from the fact that a healthy amount of curiosity should be regarded as a positive (for some reason, plenty don’t see it that way), Rosen’s propensity to ask questions and to seek information makes the report from late December that he was considering staying in school another year in order to avoid the Browns even more nonsensical. Rosen didn’t have any information about the Browns at that point and he still doesn’t have enough to allow himself to determine whether it’s a good fit. Again, even if he concludes that the fit isn’t good -- and even if the Browns draft him anyway -- Rosen will welcome the challenge, embrace the city, and join the team.
So where did that report come from? The answer may be lurking somewhere in the reality that, only two days before, Rosen told a major agency that he’d eventually be hiring another agency, and that the agency Rosen didn’t select represents the reporter who first pushed the notion that Rosen doesn’t want to play for the Browns.