For all the pre-draft chatter surrounding the Browns and quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, he might not even have been their favorite quarterback.
Or at least the one coach Hue Jackson preferred.
According to the NFL Network’s embedded Michael Silver, it was Patrick Mahomes whom Jackson thought had the highest upside of the group. But he went two spots ahead of them, when the Chiefs made a bold move up.
In discussing the Browns’ situation leading up to the 12th pick (which was traded to the Texans for a package including next year’s first-rounder), Silver noted that Deshaun Watson was the highest-rated quarterback on the board at that point, but not the one player Jackson wanted if they had stayed.
If they hadn’t moved down, Jackson was lobbying for Ohio State safety Malik Hooker in that spot.
“To me, he has a chance to be another Ed Reed,” Jackson said. “When I coached in Baltimore, I saw firsthand what kind of impact a great safety can have.”
Of course, they took another potential impact safety, turning Houston’s 25th overall pick in Jabrill Peppers, and waiting until the second round to take quarterback DeShone Kizer, who will have a chance to compete for the starting job this year.
And he’ll do it with the knowledge that his coach preferred someone else, which is always a great way to start a relationship.