QB Deshaun Watson was lost for the season just as the Cleveland Browns believed they were on their way to the postseason with an offense that was finally clicking. Even though he had previously missed a number of games this season, he sprained his high ankle during the team’s dramatic victory over the Baltimore Ravens. He complained about his shoulder during the MRI. Watson suffered a displaced fracture to the glenoid of his already injured throwing shoulder, according to the results of the testing.
Although Watson wanted to shoot pain medicine on game day and play through the injury, it was determined that this injury would require immediate surgical repair to avoid further structural damage. In the end, Watson was placed on IR and a full recovery is expected for the start of the 2024 season.
Ouch. What makes matters worse, is that the cupboard is pretty bare behind Watson. Since the Kevin Stefanski/Andrew Berry began in 2020, there has always been a reliable backup at the QB position. With Baker Mayfield, Berry had signed season veteran Case Keenum who at the time had 62 NFL starts with playoff experience. When Watson was brought into the fold but hit with an 11-game suspension, journeyman Jacoby Brissett was the backup plan who had been the starter with the Indianapolis Colts and started some games while with the Miami Dolphins.
The idea was that the next man up would be capable if the starter went down. This plan called for Josh Dobbs in 2023. However, he was dealt to the Arizona Cardinals in exchange for a bag of footballs and peanuts. The reasoning behind this was because Dorian Thompson-Robinson, a rookie who was the preseason darling, had unexpectedly moved up to backup position. Against the second and third-string defense of the other squad, DTR undoubtedly looked fantastic throughout the preseason. Against actual opponents in a real game, he was utterly outmatched and appeared to be a fifth-round rookie just surviving.