When we started our series on the quarterbacks the Cleveland Browns have selected in the first round of the NFL Draft since the franchise entered the league in 1950, we thought we knew what we were going to find.
But after working our way through the project, we were surprised to learn a few things.
For starters, we never knew the story of Harry Agganis; he had always just been a name on a piece of paper. We had no idea how good he was, his tragic death or the impact he still has on Boston University.
We knew about Bobby Garrett and his stuttering; it is a part of the team’s history. But it turns out that his speech impediment may have been over-exaggerated by head coach Paul Brown as a way for Brown to save face.
We’ve always associated Mike Phipps with Paul Warfield, and while it was a bad trade and Phipps had a disappointing career, it turns out that it wasn’t his entire fault.
And Tim Couch was better than we remember.
The biggest realization is that, with the exception of Brady Quinn and Brandon Weeden, these were draft picks that didn’t work out, rather than ones that were bad picks. Agganis, Garrett, Phipps and Couch all had the credentials coming out of college. They ended up not working out for a variety of reasons, some within their control, some not.
But they were not, essentially, bad picks.
So what does that mean for Browns general manager Ray Farmer, the holder of five selections in the first 85 picks (and 10 overall) as he prepares for this weekend’s NFL Draft?
Mainly, just because the Browns as a franchise have continually swung and missed when it comes to drafting a quarterback, that doesn’t mean that Farmer should not give it another shot this weekend.
As to when he should make that pick … well, that’s a different story.