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Who will replace Winslow in Cleveland?

2/28/2009

Posted by ESPN.com's James Walker

Whether it's Brady Quinn or Derek Anderson, the quarterback of the Cleveland Browns will need a new reliable target following the departure of tight end Kellen Winslow Jr. The former Pro Bowler was traded to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for a pair of draft picks.

Winslow and receiver Braylon Edwards were Cleveland's two most explosive players, but that tandem has been split up. The Browns have depth at tight end and will be counting on Steve Heiden and first-year player Martin Rucker. Veteran Darnell Dinkins also is a free agent who would like to return.

But there are some question marks.

Heiden has been solid for the Browns, but he is coming off a severe knee injury in December and may not be ready for training camp. He caught 23 passes for 249 yards last season and was a solid run-blocker.

Martin is a wild card. He was a favorite of the old regime but only caught two passes for 17 yards last year. Trading Winslow means the new regime of Eric Mangini and general manager George Kokinis also feel Martin has potential. Will that be realized next year? That remains to be seen.

But if either Quinn or Anderson is to ever reach their potential as a solid NFL quarterback, they will need help from the tight end position next season and beyond.

Cleveland could have more help on the way, either through the draft or free agency.