The Cleveland Browns have a fundamental decision to make in the draft: Do they go best quarterback, or do they go best player?
The Browns released two quarterbacks in 34 minutes on Wednesday and have Brian Hoyer and Alex Tanney on the roster. That puts quarterback as a need. But it was a need before Brandon Weeden and Jason Campbell were released. It has been a need for the Browns since the team returned to Cleveland in 1999.
The problem for the Browns is the top three quarterbacks in the draft -- Blake Bortles, Johnny Manziel, Teddy Bridgewater -- are not considered among the top 10 players. So if the Browns take one, they’ll be going against their stated philosophy of “best available player.”
If they go best available player, they could build around the quarterback, take one later in the draft and let him grow while Hoyer plays. Guessing which way the Browns go is guessing their entire approach to the draft.