AJ McCarron: I wanted that opportunity to be traded to the Browns

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Bengals backup quarterback AJ McCarron was nearly traded to the Browns, but the trade fell through when the proper paperwork wasn’t sent to the league office before the trade deadline. McCarron now says he wanted to be traded because he thought he could have started and won games in Cleveland, rather than stand on the sideline in Cincinnati.

“As a competitor, I wanted that opportunity, just to be able to showcase and help a team win ball games,” McCarron said on WNSP, via AL.com. “I think I would have had some success playing for Hue. I would have loved the opportunity to go up there and get them a win, more than one win. As a competitor, that’s all you can ask for.”

But the trade didn’t go through, apparently because the Browns didn’t submit the trade through the official league channels, as required before any trade can be consummated.

“It was an odd deal,” McCarron said. “I got a text from my agent at 3:34 saying ‘hey, there’s a possible trade going down. Stay by your phone. I’ll let you know.’ I got another call from him right at 4 saying ‘from what I know, it’s a done deal. I’ll call you back in a minute and let you know.’ The next call I got was at 4:03 and he’s ‘hey, the trade didn’t go through. They didn’t get the paperwork in on time.’ Everybody has a story. I’m sure Cleveland has their own story, Cincy has their own story. But it’s just one of those things, when you think you’ve seen everything, you’re shown a little bit more. I think the only people who truly know what happened were the ones leading the whole situation on both sides.”

McCarron believes he could have won games with the Browns, just as Jimmy Garoppolo took the 49ers from 1-10 to 6-10 when he started the final five games of the season. We’ll never know how that would have worked out, but McCarron may get another chance to go to Cleveland: He has a grievance hearing scheduled for next month that will determine whether he’s a restricted free agent, in which case he may spend another season as Andy Dalton‘s backup, or an unrestricted free agent, in which he’ll get to shop his services to the highest bidder and hopefully find a team that thinks he can start.

51 responses to “AJ McCarron: I wanted that opportunity to be traded to the Browns

  1. There’s a sentence I never thought I would read: “I wanted to be traded to the Browns”.

  2. “I want to play in Cleveland”.

    Please take this young man into the blue tent and check for a concussion.

  3. McCarron seems to have ability and potential. He could likely start for a number of teams.

  4. Best trade that never happened.

    Although, maybe if McCarron had come up and stunk up the joint they would have fired Sashi AND Hue.

  5. Browns got lucky for a change. If you can’t beat out Andy Daulton for a job, you’re probably not an NFL starter.

  6. It’s almost as if McCarron’s in a rush to get to Cleveland so he can have his fledgling career be completely eviscerated.

    I get wanting out of Cincinnati, but he dodged a bullet with that botched trade. Plenty of other teams will be looking for QBs over the offseason.

  7. “I wanted that opportunity to be traded to the browns”
    What did they do to this man in Cinci that’s like Chandler Jones saying getting traded last year was the best move of his career

  8. Wait a minute this trade was a go and the Browns muffed it on paper work God thats great you can’t make this stuff up!! Man I love it…. Pass on Wentz, pass on Watson, muff on McCarron!!This has got to be scripted right?

  9. Sad to read about another football player that suffered brain-damage.

    Get well soon AJ and I hope those crazy thoughts in your head about wanting to play for the Browns leave.

  10. The Browns aren’t that terrible, but I don’t expect the genius committee to get that. Their defense was top 10, their O-Line was top 5 before Thomas went down. They got Gordon back which shored up their WR corps. What they lacked was a QB, because Kizer single handedly lost a lot of ball games for that team.

    I am not sold that McCarron would have been the QB of the Future. I do think he could have addressed a glaring need and helped them win some ball games, and it would have been a chance for him to showcase his talents and show what he can do. It’s a win win, and I give the kid credit for wanting to play for a losing team. His belief in himself is admirable, and that’s what leaders do.

  11. You don’t want to sell your soul to the devil AJ….


    It was about going to Cleveland not New England I believe…. 🙂

  12. It is nice to know that he wants to play and was willing to go to a bad team to get that opportunity.

    There aren’t a lot of players that would’ve said that and meant it. I am sure he does want to get a chance to get on the field. He figures if he does it now, he can prove himself for a good contract.

    Good luck to him.

  13. AJ McCarron is basically Ryan Mallett. We don’t actually know if he’s any good in the NFL, but he sure thinks he is. Trying to trade for him was a truly Brownsian move.

  14. Has nobody else watched McCarron play? He’s not that good, although with Dalton’s play last year looks like the Bengals will want to keep him..

  15. I love to read this. Here’s a professional athlete who by outside glance, has it all. However, he’s sick of holding the clipboard and wants to play, even if it means suiting up for a team who is a perennial laughing stock. I hope he gets the opportunity to move on and show his talents.

  16. The Browns are only a decent QB away from being a 5+ win team.

    Bad QB play made everything worse: more turnovers (32nd with -28), tired defense being on the field longer (31st in Time of Possession); can’t make 3rd down plays to extend drives (29th), etc. A good QB would help alleviate those problems or at least hide them better.

  17. in which case he may spend another season as Andy Dalton‘s backup

    Yeah, or supplant Dalton as the starter. Andy should really consider dying his hair black or bleach it out, we’d all take him more seriously without the red hair.

  18. He would have won games in Cleveland and he’s not the only QB to say this. This is why Hue Jackson still has a job and Sashi Brown doesn’t.

    It’s pretty apparent that had they even kept Osweiller or McCown they would have at least won 5 games. Kizer was the best QB they had on their roster hands down. That is not a compliment to Kizer and definitely a head coaches worst nightmare. Especially when your other players are telling the media that the inexperienced QB isn’t following the play book when he throws a league high number of red zone interceptions and the coach is questioning out loud whether the kid will ever “get it”. They literally could have won 5 games just by Kizer throwing a ball out of bounds including beating the Steelers twice.

  19. The Patriots trade their backup QB because they have a starting QB and why let value sit on the bench when it can be turned into draft picks?…#smart

    The Bungles don’t trade their backup QB despite having a starting QB and will not get any return on a valuable investment…#stupid

    One Team wins Superbowls, the other has never won a Superbowl…

    The Patriots have taught us 2 valuable lessons, yet teams continue to do the opposite and expect the same results…

    #Dont rest starters week 17
    #If you have a backup QB with Trade value…you trade him!!!

  20. Sashi Brown should have gotten a bonus for not getting that trade through. Sashi was being forced by Hue and Haslams to give up a 2nd rounder and a 3rd rounder, more than for Garappolo! Now the Cleveland Haslams get to use those two picks and McCarron could still be a free agent.

  21. I would love the Jags to pick this guy up. Young real competition to push Bortles next year while he plays out his 5th year option. If Bortles can’t step it up, McCarron would be hot on his tails.
    The only question is what kind of contract McCarron would get, seeing has he has minimal playing time. Borts is gonna cost us 19 mil (yeesh)

  22. Is it just me or this isn’t the first time the browns and Bengals have screwed up a trade this way. I mean if you’re a NFL team and you can’t seem to get the administrative part of the trade done, it really says a lot about how terribly that organization is ran.

  23. reddzen says:
    January 16, 2018 at 7:59 am
    The Browns aren’t that terrible, but I don’t expect the genius committee to get that. Their defense was top 10, their O-Line was top 5 before Thomas went down. They got Gordon back which shored up their WR corps. What they lacked was a QB, because Kizer single handedly lost a lot of ball games for that team.
    The Browns aren’t terrible? They’re 4-44 over the past 3 seasons. That is the very definition of terrible. This is the worst team in NFL history, even worse than the Bucs in their early years. They’re a San Diego shanked kick away from being on a 35 game losing streak!

  24. As a bengals fan this is what aggravates me about this franchise and the people running it. You can’t sit here and tell me that we would be any worse off by giving this guy a chance over Dalton. There is not one single Tool Dalton has that you can say that he’s better then McCarron, not one. If anything Dalton lacks the one thing that McCarron has and that’s confidence.

  25. legeisyaj says:
    January 16, 2018 at 7:47 am
    No way his wife goes to Cleveland…

    It’s not as if Cincinnati is any better than the city of Cleveland. They’re both blah midwest cities.

  26. all obvious browns jokes aside he seems like a good dude and has flashed. he deserves a shot to play somewhere

  27. Dalton threw 25 TDs to only 12 INTs behind the worst o-line in football, with the 31st ranked run game and no receivers outside of AJ Green. Why do people hate that guy? Give him a coach that hasn’t caused players to choke for 15 years and see what happens.

  28. I have no problem with him wanting to play for the Browns. They have a number of good players now, and now with a smart FO, I think they can significantly improve their line-up. He’d be an upgrade over anyone else currently on the team, but not as much as Kirk Cousins or Alex Smith.

    That said, wanting to play for Clueless Jackass, the worst coach EVER in NFL history, either points to delusions or insanity for poor AJ.

  29. Somebody above said Kizer was the best QB the Browns on their roster…I assume that same person ignores the fact that Cody Kessler is still on their roster, and has outplayed any QB the Browns trotted out in the last two years. He’s not great, but certainly has proven to be the best that they have.

    And I know everyone hates Osweiler, but he has played much better than Kizer has in his short career.

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