Alright fellow Browns fans. It’s time to have a little heart to heart. It’s time to get back to reality, and out of this world where some people have legitimate hope that Joe Flacco might leave Baltimore and come to Cleveland. I’ve watched as the quiet whispers grew into hushed conversations, the hushed conversations grew into indoor voices, the indoor voices grew into shouts, and now the shouts are becoming some sort of weird cult like chant. Lets reason together, shall we?
Its not going to happen. First, because there is no way that Baltimore will let it. Even if (big IF) the Ravens were unwilling to pay Flacco his money (they aren’t), there’s not a shot in hell that they’d let him come to Cleveland. I hear you, he’s going to be a free agent. Not if they pull a sign and trade type deal, which given Flacco’s value on the open market and the Raven’s excellent relationship with their franchise quarterback, it’s not hard to see both sides agreeing on. Second, because Flacco doesn’t want to leave Baltimore, and he sure as hell doesn’t want to play for the Browns. For all the things I dislike about both Flacco and the Ravens, neither he nor their front office is stupid. They both know they’re better off staying together, even if it means cutting other players to create more cap space. What you’ve seen so far is the Browns getting played again by the media and the agents behind closed doors, where we are unkindly played as sort of an unknowing puppet to help someone get the contract they want (see Chip Kelly). Flacco probably wouldn’t sign with Cleveland even if it was a viable option, but it sure does help put pressure on the Ravens to give him the contract he wants (or close to it) if it seems like a real threat. The only victims there are the salary cap in Baltimore (and players cut because of it), and the easily manipulated fans in Cleveland. Think about it for a minute. There are teams other than Cleveland with a need at Quarterback who could afford to pay Flacco the same money Cleveland could. Have you noticed how you don’t hear about THOSE teams being rumored as a landing spot for Flacco? Why do you think that might be? Oh, because the Ravens fan base is far less willing to lose Flacco to a Division Rival than to any other team in the League. That’s right. Because it puts a ton of pressure on the Ravens to get a deal done, the deal Flacco wants, by creating this sense of urgency that he “COULD END UP BEATING US IN CLEVELAND OMG OMG OMG”.
It’s not going to happen. Flacco wants to play in Baltimore. He just wants to get every dime out of them that he can. The Ravens are not willing to lose their franchise quarterback, who just performed historically well in the playoff run that ended up with a Super Bowl win and an MVP for Flacco. They’ll posture, spread rumors on both sides, and eventually get a deal done. Cleveland will once again be on the outside looking in, wondering how things turned against us.
Don’t let yourselves be pulled down this path again. Let’s get back to reality, and look at real options to upgrade over Weeden.