Cleveland Browns fans remain in "wait and see" mode when it comes to Deshaun Watson. Watson has been cleared criminally of all sexual misconduct allegations, but it's no secret the civil cases against him presents a major problem for the NFL.
All fans can do is wait and see how the NFL will react. Will it be a full-year suspension? Or will it be something like four games or even less?
These questions continue to hang over the entire franchise as training camp begins in just over a month. Well, at this point it is time to think about Plan B, and the only one in play at the moment is Jacoby Brissett.
The Browns signed Jacoby Brissett for this exact scenario
The Browns made top headlines when they traded for Watson and immediately signed him to a fully-guaranteed $230 million deal. Then came the next move to sign Brissett as the backup. The team then went out and signed Joshua Dobbs as well, completing a veteran depth chart in rapid time.
There's one more player hanging around and getting a hefty salary. That player is the former starting quarterback Baker Mayfield. It's tough to go more than a few hours without finding a talking point on television or social media about Baker. Fans are wondering whether the Browns might stick with Mayfield if Watson is out for a significant amount of time.
This is simply not realistic for a handful of reasons. First, and most obvious, the team openly slandered the quarterback. Mayfield, in turn, demanded a trade out of town. Secondly and simpler, the team signed both Brissett and Dobbs early in the offseason.
It is crystal clear that Brissett was always a serious backup plan in the scenario Watson missed any amount of time. How should fans feel about that? Well, certainly not ideal considering the alternative is an elite talent in Watson.
Brissett has 37 starts to his name with a 14-23 record. He went 2-3 with the Miami Dolphins a season ago as he split time with Tua Tagovailoa. Yes, he did serve as a starter with the Indianapolis Colts for two seasons, but it was more out of necessity than a grand plan.
Lastly, it goes without saying that this is not what fans had in mind when Watson was acquired. At this point, it's still too early to assume the quarterback will be hit with a major suspension. However, that is the way things are trending.
If that does indeed happen, whether it be four games or 17, Brissett is the backup plan. Ultimately, that was always the plan in place for the front office and how fans react to that is a whole other story.