Former Browns QB Joe Flacco Signs With AFC Squad - Sport News

Former Browns QB Joe Flacco Signs With AFC Squad

Former Cleveland Browns quarterback and reigning Comeback Player of the Year Joe Flacco has a new home.

Flacco has signed with the Indianapolis Colts on a one-year deal that could pay him up to $8.7 million. Flacco gets $4.5 million guaranteed, per NFL Network. The contract is very similar to the one the Browns signed Jameis Winston to. However, Flacco will earn about $500,000 more guaranteed than Winston, per Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com.

Former Cleveland Browns quarterback Joe Flacco has signed with the Colts.

Flacco also had interest from the Philadelphia Eagles and New Orleans Saints, per Rob Maaddi of The Associated Press.

Flacco will back up Colts quarterback Anthony Richardson, who saw his rookie season ended early due to a shoulder injury. Richardson went 2-2 in his starts last season, collecting 577 passing yards, 3 touchdowns and 1 interception. He added 25 rushes for 136 yards and 4 touchdowns.

The Browns and Flacco seemed destined for a reunion this offseason after his stellar stint in relief of Deshaun Watson. Flacco went 4-1 during the regular season as the starter. He passed for over 300 yards in four straight games and tossed 13 touchdown passes.

However, Flacco’s tenure with the Browns ended with a thud. Flacco tossed a pair of costly pick-sixes against the Houston Texans during a 45-14 Wild Card thumping.

Browns Didn’t Offer Joe Flacco Contract
Flacco and the Browns both expressed interest in a reunion this offseason, with the 39-year-old dubbing Cleveland his top destination if he was going to be a backup.

“I can tell you that, all things equal, Cleveland is definitely the place that I would feel best about,” Flacco said during a Sirius XM interview on March 6. “Then you have to get into the world of, is somebody actually going to give me a chance to play, and all the different things that go into that.

“But I can’t help but have a special feeling about Cleveland, just because of the few weeks that I spent there and how great the city was. And, listen, at the end of the day, I don’t necessarily want that to be a huge part of, or all of the decision. But I do think it will factor into the decision, if I end up having a decision to make.”

Browns general manager Andrew Berry also expressed an interest in bringing Flacco back, saying he played “winning football” for the team. However, Berry’s actions did not say as much. The Browns did not offer Flacco a contract in free agency, per his agent.

Berry shot down the notion that bringing back Flacco could cause some additional pressure on Watson. But it seems clear the Browns wanted to give their $240 million starter a new backup and detach themselves from the brief “Wacco for Flacco” era.

Jameis Winston Ready to Work With Browns QB Deshaun Watson
The Browns opted for Winston over Flacco, going with youth and a better fit for what the team’s scheme will be under new offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey.

Winston is 30 years old and has a skill set that can more accurately mirror Watson’s. Winston has passed for 22,104 yards, 141 touchdowns and 99 interceptions in his career. He has a 34-46 record as a starter and made the Pro Bowl in 2015 as a rookie.

Winston still has aspirations to be a starter. However, he understands what his role is in Cleveland behind Watson.

“Yes, I still envision myself as a starter, however, the Lord has also called me to lead by impacting and increasing the men who are around me,” Winston told Josina Anderson of CBS Sports. “Having the opportunity to work with Deshaun (Watson) and help him be the best he can possibly be, is my main mission. Now, if Deshaun has to heal up for whatever reason, and I have to take a few games off of him, I’m going to be ready to do that; but I have to fulfill God’s purpose first before my own heart’s desire. Because ultimately I desire to win some Super Bowls, and this roster that Cleveland got, looks like they can do it.”

Watson is still rehabbing from season-ending shoulder surgery. He’s expected to be ready for training camp.

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