As the offseason progresses, Gang Green Nation will take a look at potential ways to improve the club. Today we will explore trading for Derek Anderson.
Profile: Like Kellen Clemens, Anderson grew up in Oregon. He faced Clemens in rivalry games in high school and again in college when Derek played at Oregon State, and Kellen was at Oregon. The Ravens took him in the sixth round of the 2005 Draft, but they let him go in September of his rookie season. The Browns quickly picked him up. He never saw the field during that 2005 season but made his first three starts a year later. 2007 was his breakout season. After taking over as starter in Week 2, presumably as a stopgap until Brady Quinn was ready to start later in the year, Anderson led the Browns to a surprising 10 wins. He threw for 3,787 yards and 29 touchdowns. He was rewarded with a new three year contract. However, he fell back to earth in 2008, completing just over 50% of his passes and averaging only 5.7 yards per attempt. This led to a benching in favor of Quinn. An injury to Brady soon knocked him out for the year, but Anderson's 2008 ended soon after that when he suffered an MCL injury against the Colts in November.
Why It Makes Sense: Anderson, unlike any Jets quarterback, has a track record of success in the league, albeit a small one. Now that the Browns have paid a $5 million roster bonus, any team that wants him would only be on the hook for a $1.5 million salary in 2009. Even though Eric Mangini was fired by Mike Tannenbaum, the two still speak highly of each other in public and still seem to have a close relationship. They might be willing trade partners.
Odds of Happening: Because of the Tannenbaum-Mangini connection, this is possible. Whether this is a good thing is a matter of opinion. I happen to be from the school of thought that Anderson's 2007 was a fluke. Even in that productive year, he only completed 56.5% pecent of his passes, threw 19 interceptions, and played a horrible game in Week 16 against the Bengals to cost him team a Playoff spot. These are major red flags regarding his accuracy and decision making that suggest his 2008 stats are more in line with the player he really is.