Jul. 15, 2014
The Cleveland Browns Would Be Better Off Without Jimmy Garoppolo
Even though there are several reports that the Cleveland Browns are seen as the favorites to land Jimmy Garoppolo, they would be better off without him. During the first two games of the regular season, the New England Patriots coaching staff knew that the opposing team would stack the box in an attempt to shut down the running game. This defensive strategy was implemented to see if Jimmy Garoppolo could put the offense on his shoulders and carry the team to victory. Unfortunately, the Patriots had a different plan in mind as they implemented a game plan where Garoppolo was in charge of handing the ball off and throwing quick passes. For instance, during the first half against the Cardinals, the Patriots called a bunch of passing plays centered around slant routes, out routes, routes to the flats and screens. These plays are quick to develop and allow the team to exploit a tiny window where the receivers have one or two steps on the defenders. This is because defenders aren't used to efficient peddling for more than five to ten steps thus they take one or two steps to turn around. Furthermore, these plays allowed the team to reduce the amount of pressure, hits, and sacks he received from the opposing team because the defense didn't have enough time to get around the offensive line. This offensive system allowed the Patriots to win both games without giving the opposing team a chance to expose any potential weaknesses for Garoppolo.[Jimmy Garoppolo Highlights | Patriots vs. Cardinals | NFL Week 1 Player Highlights][Every Jimmy Garoppolo Throw | Dolphins vs Patriots | NFL Week 2 Player Highlights]
Although it is the right time for the Patriots to trade Garoppolo, it would be a mistake for the Cleveland Browns to acquire him. If the team manages to acquire him, they will have to give the Patriots multiple draft picks in return. As a result, the front office and ownership are going to put pressure on the coaching staff to feature Garoppolo as the focal point of the offense. This is because they want to give Garoppolo as many chances as possible to prove that trading for him was a worthy investment. Due to this, the team would call a lot of passing plays to give him a chance to demonstrate that he isn't just a game manager and is capable of making all the necessary throws to lead the team to victory. While it is reasonable to expect a team to give their new investment many opportunities to prove themselves at a certain point, it will affect the performance of the rest of the team. For instance, if Garoppolo gets the chance to throw a lot, the offense will spend less time on the field because of incompletions, interceptions, sacks or big plays that result in short drives. As a result, the defense would have to go back on the field without the proper amount of rest which leads to the defense being more susceptible to giving up yards and points. Since they would be unable regain some energy between possessions to be able to stop the opposing offense.
Therefore, the Browns would be better off passing on the unproven commodity that is Garoppolo thus allowing the team to use their resources in a much more effective manner. For instance, the team can trade for Tyrod Taylor, who is a much more proven commodity because he has been a starter for the past two years with the Bills. Furthermore, the team can get him for a lower price because the bills seem reluctant to pay his 12 million dollar salary.