Browns’ QB grad­ings mys­tify NFL an­a­lyst

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Num­ber of times op­po­nents have ad­vanced the ball inside the Wash­ing­ton Red­skins’ 20-yard line. They’ve scored ev­ery time: 13 touch­downs and nine field goals. Green Bay is the only other de­fence al­low­ing a 100% red-zone scor­ing rate (14 TDs and five field goals in 19 vis­its).

“You played the best game any quar­ter­back has ever played against us, and we’ve played all the leg­ends.”

— Richard Sher­man, Sea­hawks CB, re­call­ing what he said (per MMQB) to Hous­ton QB De­shaun Watson after last Sun­day’s game, in which the rookie be­came the first NFLer to throw for 400 yards and four TDs, plus run for 50 yards, in a sin­gle game. Four days later Watson blew out his right ACL and is done for the year. NFL Net­work’s top draft an­a­lyst Mike May­ock a year ago rated Car­son Wentz not just the No. 1 quar­ter­back but the No. 1 over­all player in the 2016 NFL draft. The quar­ter­back-starved Cleveland Browns could have taken him No. 2 but passed, and traded down to let the Philadel­phia Ea­gles se­lect him. One of the club’s chief ta­lent eval­u­a­tors later said Wentz wasn’t even a top-25 ta­lent. This year, May­ock rated De­shaun Watson as the No. 1 quar­ter­back in the draft. Cleveland could have se­lected him No. 1 over­all but didn’t, nor even at No. 12 over­all — and was so sure Watson was un­wor­thy of so high a pick, the Browns traded that se­lec­tion to the Hous­ton Tex­ans, who hap­pily grabbed Watson. The Browns set­tled for DeShone Kizer with the 52nd over­all se­lec­tion and he has a long way to go to be­come a Watson or a Wentz, who co-lead the NFL at the mid­way point with 19 touch­down throws apiece. (Alas, Watson on Thurs­day tore his right ACL and is done for the year.) What were, and are, the Browns pos­si­bly think­ing with th­ese moves? “Hey, I’m not try­ing to rip the Browns,” May­ock said in a phone in­ter­view this week. “They’re go­ing to do it their own way. All I can tell you is that I thought the Car­son Wentz eval­u­a­tion was sim­ple. “I don’t know what the Browns are, or aren’t, do­ing. I can only give you my phi­los­o­phy … which is that ev­ery day you don’t have a fran­chise quar­ter­back, you’re another day closer to get­ting fired. And you’re not in the po­si­tion to pass on a fran­chise quar­ter­back, IF that’s the grade you have on him. “So I don’t know what their grades were on (2016 No. 1 over­all pick) Jared Goff, Car­son Wentz, De­shaun Watson and (2017 No. 2 over­all pick) Mitch Tru­bisky. That’s in their build­ing. All I can tell you is that if you don’t have one, and you’ve got a grade on a kid who’s a fran­chise quar­ter­back, you bet­ter get him when you can. As op­posed to try­ing to wait a year or two for a par­tic­u­lar player, or a par­tic­u­lar class, or try­ing to ac­cu­mu­late draft picks so you have a thou­sand draft picks. My per­spec­tive is, if you have a need and there’s a kid there this year that you can go get, you’d bet­ter go get him.”

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