Jacoby Brissett has a new home, leaving the Cleveland Browns after one eventful season.
Brissett inked a one-year deal with the Washington Commanders this week and will be in a competition to be their starting quarterback. It’s close to the best-case situation for Brissett, 30, who put together some solid tape last season while with the Browns and was adamant he could still be a starter.
The contract with the Commanders is worth $8 million and could grow up to $10 million with incentives.
Brissett wasn’t dealt the easiest hand with the Browns, getting thrust directly into a tough situation as the fill-in for Deshaun Watson. The Browns turned to Brissett to start the first 11 games with Watson suspended and he performed admirably.
Brissett could have been critical of his time with the Browns, he did quite the opposite while being introduced by the Commanders.
“It was good,” Brissett said. “I have literally no bad thoughts or words for that organization, that team, the fans. They embraced me with opens arms. … So I have no bad or ill feelings towards them.”
Brissett Stepped Up as Leader for Browns
Brissett outplayed expectations despite his 4-7 record as the starter. He completed 64% of his passes for 2,608 passing yards, 12 touchdowns and six interceptions, also establishing himself as a leader in the locker room.
“He’s just a great dude,” Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski told Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer. “I mean, that’s the simple answer. He’s very engaging. He’s very, very intelligent. He’s extremely supportive. I gave him a game ball after the game just because he’s a team guy. He’s such a great teammate, and it’s all the things that nobody sees that he does in the locker room.”
It likely wasn’t easy for Brissett, who knew his time as the starter had an expiration date. However, he was grateful for the opportunity and the people he met along the way.
“Obviously going into a unique situation, it was complete transparency throughout the whole process,” Brissett said. “I have a lot of respect and, honestly, love for a lot of those guys. I’m glad I was able to meet a lot of those guys, because I know those relationships will last longer than football will.”
Brissett will compete with 2022 fifth-round pick Sam Howell for the starting gig in Washington. The other quarterback on the depth chart is Jake Fromm.
Browns in Search of Backup Options
With Brissett now out of the picture, the Browns have to figure out their own backup situation. Watson is the unquestioned starter but the only other quarterback Cleveland has under contract is Kellen Mond, who has no notable experience to speak of.
Mond was a third-round pick of the Vikings in 2021 but was released during final roster cuts last season. The Browns swooped in and claimed him, although he did not appear in a game. Brissett took on the backup duties once Watson returned and Joshua Dobbs had the mantle prior to that.
The Browns have not ruled out that Mond will be the backup when the season begins, but considering their history of signing experienced backups under general manager Andrew Berry, expect the team to at least investigate their options.