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Shutdown Corner

Can I interest you in Colt McCoy?

MJD
Shutdown Corner

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It's a time of year in the NFL when everyone loves what they have. Free agents have been signed, young men have been drafted, and no one's yet had a chance to prove that they'll fail against real competition.

Think about the reports coming out of minicamp about your team. Let me guess: Everyone looks terrific, right?

I wonder if teams aren't so in love with their own players that they're missing an opportunity to acquire a better one, specifically, in this case, Colt McCoy of the Cleveland Browns.

The Browns are in love with draftee Brandon Weeden, and there's probably not going to be a spot for McCoy on the opening day roster. Mike Holmgren said that the Browns aren't looking to trade McCoy right now in what was probably the least convincing trade denial ever. Anybody who wanted him could probably have him right now in exchange for a seventh-round pick and a tube of mustache wax. It becomes very valuable to Mike Holmgren in the summertime.

And maybe it's just me, but isn't McCoy just about an ideal backup quarterback right now? I realize that he's yet to set the world on fire, but there have been more then enough encouraging signs to warrant a rolling of the dice on him. His passer rating is in the mid-70s, and his completion percentages don't bowl you over, but we did see the one thing it's crucial to see from a young quarterback -- improvement.

From 2010 to 2011, McCoy improved both his touchdown and interception rate. He sent from six touchdowns and nine interceptions in 2010 to 14 touchdowns and 11 interceptions in 2011. Is he not right on track, or even ahead of schedule, for where you'd want a third-round draft pick to be?

And he made this improvement despite playing for the Browns, where he's had very little help from the running game, subpar receivers, a defense  that's put him in difficult positions and a schedule that's had him playing against some very strong defenses.

No one's telling you that Colt McCoy is going to turn your team into a magical passing juggernaut overnight, or even that you're getting a future quality starter. I'm just saying that McCoy is right where he should be in his development and some team could grab a third-round talent right now at a sixth- or seventh-round price tag.

The Browns must really, really love Weeden. McCoy, even if he isn't their starter, is still an asset. It's a little surprising that the Browns, a team so badly in need of assets, would let McCoy be had for such a low price.

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