- Jamison Hensley, ESPN Staff Writer
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It looks like three months of speculation regarding Ryan Mallett is over. League sources told The Plain Dealer that the Cleveland Browns have no interest in the Patriots backup quarterback. According to the report, the Browns "have not and will not call" about Mallett.
Of course, this will only lead to more speculation. Does this mean the Browns are content with Brandon Weeden? Or, are the Browns not interested in Mallett because they are eyeing West Virginia's Geno Smith in the draft?
All we know right now is Mallett apparently isn't in the Browns' plans, which makes sense. Earlier Thursday, with the start of the NFL draft quickly approaching, the Boston Globe reported multiple teams have called the Patriots about Mallett. According to the report, the Patriots want a second-round pick this year or a first-rounder next year for developing Mallett, a former third-round pick.
If the Browns had any interest, this is where it should have stopped. Cleveland doesn't have a second-round pick in this draft because it took wide receiver Josh Gordon in the supplemental draft and can only acquire one by moving back from the No. 6 overall pick. And the Browns should have no thoughts about giving up a first-round pick for a quarterback who wouldn't be a significant upgrade over Weeden.
The speculation that the Browns would trade for Mallett started on Jan. 18, when the Browns hired Mike Lombardi to their front office staff. In case you forgot, Lombardi raved about Mallett when he was an NFL Network analyst and criticized the Browns taking Weeden in last year's first round.
Now, the Browns' quarterback talk can turn from Mallett to Smith, the top-rated quarterback in the draft. There's speculation that the Browns could trade up to the Oakland Raiders' No. 3 spot to get ahead of the Philadelphia Eagles, who may take Smith at No. 4. Or, as many mock drafts have today, the Browns could take Smith at No. 6.
It looks like three months of speculation regarding Ryan Mallett is over. League sources told The Plain Dealer that the Cleveland Browns have no interest in the Patriots backup quarterback.