Hoping to end a quarterback drought that has now reached epic proportions, the Browns entered the new league year determined to make a run at promising Patriots backup Jimmy Garoppolo.

By the time Cleveland’s front-office operatives began ramping up draft preparation, however, they had all but given up hope of prying Garoppolo away from New England, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported early this month.

Executive VP of football operations Sashi Brown confirmed as much in Wednesday’s press conference, answering with a simple “no” when asked if the Browns envision trading for a veteran quarterback during the 2017 NFL Draft, April 27-29 in Philadelphia.

The follow-up question was whether the Browns might trade for a quarterback before draft weekend.

“Could we in theory?” Brown replied. “Yes, but are we planning on it or is that the plan? No.”

Although Patriots player personnel director Nick Caserio didn’t rule out a Garoppolo blockbuster at his own pre-draft press conference, Rapoport has been steadfast in his reporting that Bill Belichick simply doesn’t want to part with his premium Tom Brady insurance.

Similarly, the Bengals have placed an exorbitant price tag on their own backup quarterback, AJ McCarron, who played under current Browns coach Hue Jackson in Cincinnati.

Absent the possibility of a reasonable deal for Garoppolo or McCarron, the Browns are fully expected to draft a quarterback capable of pushing second-year passer Cody Kessler and Texans castoff Brock Osweiler for the Week 1 starting job.


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