DeShone Kizer struggled as a rookie, but moves to a much better situation in Green Bay.
The Cleveland Browns added several pieces to the roster Friday, but made an addition by subtraction, too. They sent quarterback DeShone Kizer to the Green Bay Packers late in the day, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.
The trade is believed to be tied to a deal earlier in the day that sent cornerback Damarious Randall to Cleveland.
The Browns also traded for quarterback Tyrod Taylor and receiver Jarvis Landry earlier Friday.
Why did the Browns trade Kizer? As a rookie, Kizer struggled badly in Cleveland. He threw 22 interceptions, tanking an offense that had a good offensive line and decent rushing attack.
It was rough to watch.
It also meant there was just no way the Browns planned on allowing Kizer to be a starter for the team again. Cleveland will probably start Taylor in 2018 and is almost definitely going to add a rookie quarterback who can learn behind him.
Even though Kizer was a second-round pick in 2017, it just didn’t make sense to stick with him any longer.
Why did the Packers trade for Kizer? No one will criticize Cleveland’s decision to move on — at least not any time soon. The real team under scrutiny will be Green Bay after sending away a solid cornerback to get a turnover-prone mess at quarterback.
But Kizer needed time to develop. He dealt with turnovers often at Notre Dame and few believed he was a quarterback who could start early in his NFL career without running into serious hurdles. That’s exactly what happened when the only competition for the quarterback in preseason for the starting job was Brock Osweiler, Cody Kessler and Kevin Hogan.
In Green Bay, Kizer will have time to develop and the Packers can attempt to mold him into the player the Browns thought they were getting when they took him at No. 52 overall.
Aaron Rodgers is still the starter, but the Packers saw very little to believe that Brett Hundley is a player worth developing much longer. Kizer can be that player and learn from one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks without the pressure that he had in Cleveland.