Don't do it, Cleveland. You've had enough cautionary tales by now, one as recently as last year when a trade up for the right to draft Johnny Manziel blew up in your face.
As we established earlier this offseason, first-round quarterbacks have not been paying off at all in recent years. In fact, looking at the 17 quarterbacks taken in the first round since 2009, no more than three of them (Andrew Luck, Ryan Tannehill and maybe Matthew Stafford) had what I'd call good 2014 campaigns.
Now, we're hearing that the mistake-prone Browns are reportedly talking with the Washington Redskins about a trade to move up into the No. 5 spot, presumably for a shot at a top-flight prospect like Jameis Winston or Marcus Mariota. But even if the Browns haven't learned from what happened with recent first-round busts Manziel, Brandon Weeden and Brady Quinn, they should consider how rarely things pan out well for teams who trade up for quarterbacks in that round.
Here's the list generated by Adam Jahns of the Chicago Sun-Times:
Quarterbacks drafted after first-round trade-ups this century:
1. Michael Vick (2001)
2. Kyle Boller (2003)
3. Eli Manning (2004)
4. J.P. Losman (2004)
5. Jason Campbell (2005)
6. Jay Cutler (2006)
7. Brady Quinn (2007)
8. Joe Flacco (2008)
9. Mark Sanchez (2009)
10. Josh Freeman (2009)
11. Tim Tebow (2010)
12. Blaine Gabbert (2011)
13. Robert Griffin III (2012)
14. Johnny Manziel (2014)
15. Teddy Bridgewater (2015)
Only four are NFL starters, while only two - Manning and Flacco - are established veterans holding secure jobs. Those are the only two with championships, while five are currently out of the league. I would say only one of the last 12 have come through and delivered at or beyond expectations (Flacco).
Don't do it, Cleveland.
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