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4:33 PM ET

  • Pat McManamonESPN Staff Writer Close
    • Covered Browns, Cleveland sports since 1998
    • Previously worked at Fox Sports Ohio, AOL Fanhouse, Akron Beacon Journal/Ohio.com
    • Cleveland native, proud father of two daughters

One can only imagine how much the price for Jimmy Garoppolo went up in a few hours time on Wednesday afternoon.

In short order on Wednesday it became known that:

  • The Bears had targeted and come to a virtual agreement with free-agent-to-be Mike Glennon, last of the Bucs. Glennon seems earmarked for Chicago on Thursday.

  • The Bills agreed to a re-worked deal with Tyrod Taylor that kept him off the free-agent market.

  • The 49ers had signed Brian Hoyer.

That's three potential teams out of the quarterback market, and one of the Cleveland Browns top wish list targets (Taylor) staying with his team.

Which leaves two teams badly in need of a quarterback: The Jets and the Browns.

New England may be reluctant to trade Garoppolo, but the Patriots sure as heck will not trade him to the Jets, within their division. Which means the Browns are the only team that could reasonably pursue a trade for him.
Whether the Patriots agree or not is up for debate. Numerous reports — especially coming ESPN's Adam Schefter — say the Patriots are not going to deal Garoppolo.

But the Browns have reached the point of quiet desperation. They know they need an upgrade at the position, and the upgrade options now are down to Garoppolo and the draft. The general consensus is that the draft guys are two or three years away, or where Garoppolo is now after three years with Bill Belichick, Josh McDaniels and Tom Brady.

Where the price might have been the 12th pick and a lower-round choice before Wednesday, it now may be the 12th pick this year and perhaps the second-round choice the Browns acquired from the Eagles.

One league insider on Tuesday surmised that Belichick might even want this year's No. 1 from the Browns as well as next year's.

That's a high price.

But it's not outrageous.

Just look at what the Browns and Titans got last year in trades for the ability to draft a quarterback.

Tennessee traded the first overall pick (and two lower-round picks) to the Rams for two ones, two twos and two threes.

The Eagles gave the Browns two ones, and picks in the second, third and fourth rounds.

Two picks in the first round or picks in the first and second rounds would be a lot to give up for an unproven quarterback.

And it is.

But it's not a lot if he's the right guy. In 10 years, if the Browns make a trade for Garoppolo and he is the answer to their never-ending problem, those two draft choices will barely draw a second's notice.

It takes courage to be bold.

The chance of success may not be high.

But the Browns owe it to themselves to consider and take the chance.

Because whatever you give up, it's not a lot if the return is a franchise quarterback.

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