Why are Browns working out Cam Newton?

March, 10, 2011
3/10/11
9:00
AM ET
Here is an interesting development: The Cleveland Browns are holding a private workout for Auburn quarterback Cam Newton, according to Jason La Canfora of the NFL Network.

Say what?

The Browns have been steadfast this offseason in saying they're 100 percent behind Colt McCoy, who started eight games last year as a rookie. So what is the point of Cleveland, which holds the No. 6 pick, to take an up-close and personal look at Newton, who could be the first or second quarterback chosen in next month’s draft?

It's officially "silly season" in the NFL where it's difficult to separate fact from fiction, and you have to read between the lines with everything that is done and said. Cleveland holding a private workout for Newton could be as big as the Browns having serious doubts about McCoy behind closed doors, or as little as smoke screen to either drive up trade value or hide their true intentions at No. 6 (defensive line or wide receiver).

Most likely it's the latter. But for the Browns, who also had coach Pat Shurmur at Auburn's pro day, to invest this much time into Newton leading up to the draft should at least raise a few eyebrows.

The Cincinnati Bengals, who have quarterback issues and the No. 4 pick, will also privately work out Newton.

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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