Browns Hint at Coming Extension for $230 Million QB Deshaun Watson

The Browns have talked about a 10-year plan with Deshaun Watson.

Getty Images The Browns have talked about a 10-year plan with Deshaun Watson.

The Cleveland Browns might already be considering a contract extension for Deshaun Watson despite his performance not meeting expectations thus far.

The Browns gave up three first-round picks to land Watson in 2022. The team also handed him a $230 million fully guaranteed contract. Through two seasons, Watson has played in 12 games and his play on the field has been uneven.

Despite a lack of results on the field, general manager Andrew Berry has alluded to a 10-year plan with his franchise quarterback. Watson is under contract with the Browns until 2026, which would mark five seasons in Cleveland. Berry clarified his thinking about Watson’s ten-year horizon with the Browns.

“I think the one thing that’s pretty unique about the quarterback position in our sport is when you find a good one, they’re typically with your franchise for a long period of time,” Berry said on Thursday, April 18. “So, when I say ten years, maybe I didn’t mean it quite as literally as you’re taking it, but for a very long period of time because you know that player at that position can really anchor your franchise and anchor your organization on the field. So, as we think about it’s less about a yearly fluctuation, but very much with the long-term focus because quarterbacks, they’re not all Tom Brady playing till they’re 45. But quarterbacks in this league, they play to their mid and late thirties. That’s an incredibly valuable player to have.”

When asked if he was eyeing a future beyond this contract with Watson, Berry responded with a simple, “Yes, sure.”

Browns QB Deshaun Watson Ramping Up for Return

Browns QB Deshaun Watson has been amping up his rehab.

Getty ImagesBrowns QB Deshaun Watson has been amping up his rehab.

The 10-year timeline for Watson won’t mean much unless he begins to produce on the field. A lengthy suspension and injuries have limited the impact he’s been able to have. Priority No. 1 for the Browns is keeping Watson on the field.

Watson had shoulder surgery in November. He suffered a fracture to the glenoid bone in his throwing shoulder last season and was limited to six starts. Watson has been working hard with his rehab to get back on the field and recently started throwing again.

“This week, Deshaun was throwing up to 40 yards. He’s in a pretty good spot. Again, I don’t want to put the cart in front of the horse,” Berry said. “But he’s progressing as appropriate we’re really, really pleased with the work that he’s put in and really pleased with how the shoulder is responding, but we’re still in the middle of a rehab process. So we know that it can take different, left and right turns. But we’re pretty optimistic in terms of what we’ve seen so far.”

Deshaun Watson Targeting Week 1 Return

Browns QB Deshaun Watson plans on being on the field for Week 1.

Getty ImagesBrowns QB Deshaun Watson plans on being on the field for Week 1.

Watson has said he’ll be ready for Week 1. He’s on-site for the team’s offseason workouts but is still mostly working on his own. Watson expects to participate more in May during OTAs.

“The plan is to come back whenever they feel like, and I feel like we’re on the same page that we’re ready, so there’s not a timeline or a date that we have that this is when I’m going to be a hundred percent,” Watson said on April 17. “It’s just kind of how the process, it can be sooner than later, it can be later than sooner. So I think he’s just really, depending on how each landmark we hit and how fast we can get it and how my shoulder’s reacting.”

The Browns added some additional weapons for Watson this offseason. The most notable is Jerry Jeudy, who arrived via trade. The former first-round pick will team up with Amari Cooper and Elijah Moore, giving Watson another capable target.

Watson has passed for 2217 yards, 14 touchdowns and 9 interceptions through two seasons with the Browns.

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