COMMENTARY | You knew that this was coming.
The ink is barely dry on new Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan's contract, and already sources are linking the Browns with Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins, who recently related that he would be open to a trade this offseason.
In theory, it may seem logical to reunite Cousins and Shanahan since they were together in Washington the past two seasons. Cousins likely has a better understanding of Shanahan's system than any quarterback in the league except for Redskins starter Robert Griffin III.
Unfortunately though, a Cousins-Shanahan reunion is not what the Browns need if they hope to be successful in 2014. These are three reasons why acquiring Cousins would be a bad idea for the Browns:
Cousins Did Not Impress In 2013 Under Shanahan
Despite throwing just 46 regular season passes in his rookie season, Cousins played well enough in 2012 to catch the eye of quarterback-hungry teams wondering when the Redskins would put him on the market.
When Cousins was named the Redskins' starter for the remainder of 2013 over a seemingly healthy Griffin III on December 11, the intentions seemed clear. This would be a chance for Cousins to showcase his skills against three unimposing defenses, so Washington could get maximum value for him in a trade.
Things didn't go according to plan for Cousins and the Redskins, though. Washington lost all three games, and Cousins struggled in two of them. After starting out with a solid 94.8 quarterback rating in Week 15 against the Atlanta Falcons, Cousins had a mediocre showing against the defensively-challenged Dallas Cowboys, and bottomed out in the season finale against the New York Giants, when he posted a quarterback rating of just 31.8.
Brian Hoyer Is More Than Capable Of Picking Up Shanahan's Offense
Learning a new offensive system is nothing new for Hoyer. Shanahan's hiring means that this will be the fourth straight season Hoyer has played for a new offensive coordinator.
In spite of his burial on Cleveland's depth chart at the beginning of last season, Hoyer proved he was more than capable of leading Norv Turner's complicated passing offense when pressed into duty in Week 3 against the Minnesota Vikings. He led the Browns to victories over Minnesota and the Cincinnati Bengals before suffering a season-ending knee injury against the Buffalo Bills on October 3.
Players like Hoyer don't stick around in the NFL unless they have the ability to adapt to new systems. Shanahan should have no problem bringing Hoyer up to speed this offseason, as learning new schemes is old hat for him at this point.
Whatever Washington Wants For Cousins Is Too Much For The Browns To Part With
Cleveland is bursting at the seams with selections in the 2014 NFL Draft. The Browns have 10 picks, and seven of them are within the coveted first four rounds. There's no doubt that Washington would love to get their hands on a couple of those picks.
That's something that cannot happen for the Browns, though. Cleveland's roster was so shockingly thin in various areas in 2013 that it is imperative that the Browns hang onto their picks in the hopes that at least some of their personnel woes can be addressed this May.
The Browns will have a pretty talented pool of quarterbacks to choose from in this years draft. There's no sense in dealing any of their picks for a player that has exactly one impressive NFL start under his belt.
Shaun Heidrick is a Yahoo Contributor who has followed the Cleveland Browns for over 25 years.
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