AFC Rival to Compete With Browns for Quarterback Joe Flacco

The Browns would welcome Joe Flacco back next season.

Getty Images The Browns would welcome Joe Flacco back next season.

The rest of the NFL is going to make filling out the quarterback room a challenge for the Cleveland Browns.

Mary Kay Cabot of reported on Thursday, February 29, that the New England Patriots have serious interest in signing QB Joe Flacco when free agency opens in March. The Patriots recently hired former Browns offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt after Cleveland fired him following its playoff defeat to the Houston Texans on Super Wildcard Weekend.

I’m hearing the Patriots are interested in possibly signing Flacco as a bridge starter to help mentor a rookie quarterback if they select one at No. 3 overall, such as North Carolina’s Drake Maye. Former Browns offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt — now in that role in New England — is helping to lead the charge on the quarterback search, and knows as well as anyone that Flacco has plenty left in the tank even though he turned 39 on Jan. 16.

First-round quarterbacks often start right away, but some teams prefer to let them learn behind a veteran, at least for part of the season. Flacco, the NFL Comeback Player of the Year, would be excellent in that role, and knows what to expect with Van Pelt. Like other teams in that category, the Patriots will consider other quarterbacks such as Jacoby Brissett, who [is] also on the Browns’ radar.

Flacco went 4-1 as Cleveland’s starter down the stretch of the regular season after a November shoulder surgery sidelined Deshaun Watson for the remainder of the year.

The author will update this post. 

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