The Acquisition of Deshaun Watson Boosts Cleveland Browns’ Super Bowl Odds
The Cleveland Browns made a significant move by acquiring quarterback Deshaun Watson in a trade with the Houston Texans. This trade not only upgraded their quarterback position but also had a positive impact on their Super Bowl odds. The odds at DraftKings shifted from +3500 to +1700 for the Browns following the trade, highlighting the potential impact of Watson’s arrival.
A Trade Involving a Motherlode of Picks
In exchange for Watson, the Texans will receive three first-round draft picks over the next three NFL drafts from the Browns. As part of the deal, the Browns also included three additional picks, including a third-rounder in 2023 and two fourth-rounders in 2022 and 2024. In a twist, it was initially reported that the Texans would send a fourth-rounder instead of a sixth-rounder from the 2024 draft, but the NFL clarified the details.
The Impact on the AFC North Division
The AFC North is known for its physical and old-school style of football, but the addition of Deshaun Watson introduces a new dynamic to the division. With Watson joining the Browns, the AFC North now features three talented quarterbacks who will face each other twice every season.
Lamar Jackson, a dual-threat quarterback for the Baltimore Ravens, and Joe Burrow, a gunslinging quarterback for the Cincinnati Bengals, will provide tough competition for Watson. If these three quarterbacks can stay healthy, the AFC North will become an exciting division to watch in the coming years, with their contrasting styles of play captivating fans.
Super Bowl Aspirations for the Bengals and Ravens
Although the Cincinnati Bengals fell short in Super Bowl 56 against the LA Rams, they are optimistic about their chances of returning to the championship game next season. With Joe Burrow leading the way, the Bengals have odds of +1800 to win Super Bowl 57. However, they are slightly behind the Browns, who have improved their odds to +1700 following the acquisition of Deshaun Watson.
The Baltimore Ravens, led by Lamar Jackson, also have their sights set on Super Bowl 57 with odds of +2200. As for the Pittsburgh Steelers, oddsmakers do not have much faith in their chances, as they sit at +6500 odds to win the Super Bowl next season after quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s retirement.
Shuffling the Quarterback Deck
The trade for Deshaun Watson had a ripple effect on other teams in the league, particularly those that were originally considered favorites to acquire him. The Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints were initially in the running for Watson but missed out when the Browns swooped in and secured the trade.
As a result, the Falcons made adjustments by trading their longtime quarterback Matt Ryan to the Indianapolis Colts and signing Marcus Mariota. The Saints, on the other hand, re-signed Jameis Winston, who is recovering from an ACL injury suffered in the previous season.
Meanwhile, the Carolina Panthers, who were also interested in acquiring Watson, are now left with Sam Darnold as their starting quarterback. This situation poses a challenge for head coach Matt Rhule, as the upcoming season could be make-or-break for him. The Panthers need to show significant improvement, such as securing a playoff berth or achieving a winning record, in order to avoid potential consequences for Rhule’s tenure.
What’s Next for Baker Mayfield?
With Deshaun Watson now leading the Browns, they must decide how to handle their former starting quarterback Baker Mayfield. Several teams, including the Carolina Panthers and Pittsburgh Steelers, are in the market for a quarterback. However, the Browns are reportedly demanding a high price, requesting a first-round draft pick in return for Mayfield.
The Panthers, who were initially eyeing Watson, have recently claimed they are not interested in acquiring Mayfield. However, some speculate that this might be a bluff, as the Panthers may prefer not to part with a first-round pick, hoping that the Browns will eventually lower their asking price.
Although Mayfield, as the former number one overall pick in the NFL Draft, has not lived up to expectations, there is still interest in his services. It’s worth considering the availability of Jimmy Garoppolo, who could be an alternative for teams reluctant to give up valuable draft capital.
As for the Steelers, they may also consider either Jimmy Garoppolo or Baker Mayfield if they are unable to secure a quarterback in the upcoming NFL Draft. However, given the divisional rivalry between the Steelers and Browns, it is unlikely that a deal involving Mayfield would materialize, as the Steelers have faced Mayfield numerous times in recent seasons.
If no suitable offers emerge for Mayfield, the Browns may need to reconsider their asking price or keep Mayfield on their roster, potentially leading to salary cap implications. The quarterback market often heats up as the season progresses and teams experience injuries to their starters, which can improve Mayfield’s trade value.
The Saints as a Potential Landing Spot for Mayfield
Another team that could be interested in Baker Mayfield is the New Orleans Saints. With Jameis Winston’s recovery from injury potentially affecting his availability for the start of the season, the team could view Mayfield as an insurance policy. Mayfield’s experience and skillset could provide stability for the Saints’ offense until Winston is ready to return.
The Cleveland Browns made a significant move by acquiring Deshaun Watson, upgrading their quarterback position and bolstering their Super Bowl aspirations. The trade not only affected the Browns but also had a ripple effect on other teams, forcing them to make adjustments in their pursuit of a quarterback. As the quarterback carousel spins, the league eagerly awaits the resolution of Baker Mayfield’s future, with multiple teams potentially in the running for his services.
1. How did the acquisition of Deshaun Watson impact the Cleveland Browns’ Super Bowl odds?
The acquisition of Deshaun Watson significantly improved the Cleveland Browns’ Super Bowl odds, as evidenced by the shift from +3500 to +1700 at DraftKings following the trade.
2. Which teams were initially favored to land Deshaun Watson?
The Atlanta Falcons and New Orleans Saints were considered favorites to acquire Deshaun Watson before the Cleveland Browns secured the trade.
3. Who are the other notable quarterbacks in the AFC North division?
The AFC North features Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens and Joe Burrow of the Cincinnati Bengals, who are talented quarterbacks and will provide tough competition for Deshaun Watson.
4. What are the odds of the Cincinnati Bengals and Baltimore Ravens winning the Super Bowl?
The Cincinnati Bengals have odds of +1800 to win Super Bowl 57, while the Baltimore Ravens have odds of +2200 for the same event.
5. What other teams are potentially interested in acquiring Baker Mayfield?
The Carolina Panthers and Pittsburgh Steelers are among the teams in the market for a quarterback and could be interested in Baker Mayfield, provided the asking price is reasonable. The New Orleans Saints could also consider Mayfield as an insurance policy if Jameis Winston is not ready for the start of the season.