Most second-year quarterbacks in the NFL don’t feel a ton of pressure, especially if they are coming off a somewhat decent rookie campaign. However, when you are Brandon Weeden and already 28 years old, 2013 is the final audition for him to see if he can become the franchise quarterback. The question is, can he finally be the guy to turn around the Cleveland Browns and make a push for the playoffs?
Despite the jokes and complaints that surrounded Weeden when the Browns took a chance on the old rookie, Weeden had some successful moments in 2012. The Browns, led by new offensive coordinator Norv Turner, are looking to turn the corner this season with a more aggressive passing game. That includes throwing deep downfield more to try and utilize some of their playmakers.
One of the advantages Cleveland saw in taking Weeden is that he is already physically mature enough to be in the prime of his career. He has always been a polished passer with a strong arm, but he just did not have the reps to be successful in 2012. It also hurt him that Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson were all having so much success as rookies.
Cleveland should be better all-around in 2013, so they expect to at least be better than 5-11, but it would be a brave man who bet his fantasy football team on Weedens numbers. More than likely another season below .500 will officially end the Weeden experiment. The 2014 NFL Draft class has a few intriguing quarterback prospects, headlined by Teddy Bridgewater, Tajh Boyd and Johnny Manziel.
They already have their running game accounted for, as Trent Richardson is coming off a superb rookie campaign. Cleveland is slowly but surely building up to be a playoff contender. However, until they can get Weeden, backup Brian Hoyer or any other option to be a reliable quarterback, they are always going to struggle in the AFC North.
This article was written by fanduel.com. Visit fanduel.com for fantasy sports leagues all year round.