If the 49ers fleeced the Chiefs in the trade that sent Alex Smith to Kansas City, the 49ers experienced a minor fleecing of their own in giving up a fifth-round pick and a seventh-round pick to the Browns for quarterback Colt McCoy.
McCoy was the odd man out in Cleveland, destined to be cut if the Browns couldn’t trade him. Amazingly, the Browns’ front office pulled off a deal for a guy they didn’t want.
It helped that one other team, we’re told, was pursuing McCoy. If McCoy had been cut, the 49ers would have been behind that team in the waiver order — unless the other team was the Ravens.
And that ended up being the key for the Browns. The Niners wanted McCoy, who has only three years of NFL service. To get him, the 49ers had to pull off a trade; otherwise, the other team would have had dibs via the waiver process.
Still, getting anything for a fourth-year player due to make $1.5 million to sit on the bench in 2013 is a bonus for the Browns, who now have one extra selection in the draft and one pick higher than it would have been.