If the news of Josh McCown signing with the Cleveland Browns was the highlight of your weekend, then I’m sorry to say that you probably need to find some other enjoyments in life. Either that or you’re a die hard Browns fan and I respect you. And weep for you. But now I’m just being mean. Moving on…
In all likelihood, McCown will be the starter this season unless he stinks so bad the team has no choice but to throw Manziel back out there… for christ’s sake, I can’t hold back anymore… God really does hate Cleveland. This spoiled rich boy who does stupid money signs, who had the fans screaming for to replace a guy who had lead the team to a 7-4 record, is now in rehab after his pro career couldn’t have gotten off a worse start. Ok, it’s out of my system… back to McCown. He’s the starter, so that naturally begs the question, What can we expect from him fantasy-wise?
The quick answer: Nothing. Nothing at all.
McCown is not the guy you remember from Chicago; he just isn’t. By any statistical measure, that five game stretch where he threw 13 touchdowns to just one interception is an outlier. Call it serendipitous, call it a guy making the most of his situation, call it Trestman being a quarterback whisperer, call it whatever you want as long as it’s not, “Josh McCown is a rosterable fantasy football player.”
McCown threw for 2,206 yards last season with a 56.3% completion percentage and only 11 touchdowns. That was against the abysmal NFC South which begrudgingly boasts the entire league’s two worst defenses in Atlanta and New Orleans. Now he’s in a division with much better defenses in the Ravens, Steelers, and Bengals. The Steelers, who to the common fan probably evoke the strongest sense of stingy D, are actually the weakest defensive team of those three last season. But even they finished three spots ahead of Carolina, the NFC South’s best defensive team, in points allowed per game in 2014.
And who’s McCown supposed the throw the ball to? Josh Gordon is done for the year and will probably never wear a Browns uniform again. That leaves Andrew Hawkins and Taylor Gabriel as the team’s two best wideouts. Ouch. Maybe if instead of “Josh McCown,” his name was “Tom Brady” or something, then I might consider that an workable receiving corp, but unfortunately Josh McCown it is.
Bottom line: Don’t even think about Josh McCown on draft day. If some other poor soul in your league wants to pick him and slam the rest of the league for not having the balls to take a guy who’s obviously going to throw for 3,500 yards and 20 touchdowns, then let him. Because I can assure you, that won’t happen.
Josh McCown’s 2015 stat line: 13 games (that’s 8 to start the season, and 5 more to end it after Johnny Football tries to play quarterback for a few games), 2,500 yards, 13 TD, 15 INT, and the physical embodiment of Cleveland’s never-ending misery. Until LeBron James delivers the Larry O’Brien trophy, that is… but that’s a different ballgame.