Cleveland Browns officials and fans have been complaining about the fact that the Rams chose the Redskins’ offer for the second overall pick in the draft over that of the Browns ever since the deal was announced three weeks ago. Yesterday we heard Jeff Fisher’s reasoning behind taking the Redskins’ offer.
Mike Holmgren has said that the Browns’ put forth “every bit the offer” that the Redskins did to try to move up. Although there is some dispute as to the timing of things, if you work on the premise that both teams offered three first-round picks and a second, Fisher believed that Washington’s offer was better for his team.
Cleveland holds two first-round picks in this draft and Holmgren wanted to trade those plus his second-round pick this year and his first in 2013 for the Rams’ pick. The Redskins offered their firsts in 2012, 2013, and 2014 and their second this year.
Speaking to the media at the owners meetings on Wednesday, Fisher explained that he would rather have the first-round picks spread out over the next three drafts rather than having two of them this year. He said that this was because he is not very familiar with what he has on the Rams as he is in his first year of coaching in St. Louis.
“If you look at it from this perspective: I haven’t met the players yet, haven’t seen them on the field, and I realistically don’t know what we have,” Fisher said. “We’ll have a much better idea after the season what kind of team we have. And our needs very well may change.”
“To have an opportunity to have two 1s in ’13, ’14 was really important to us.”
Holmgren has hinted that the close relationship between Fisher and Mike Shanahan greased the skids for the deal to be made. Both Fisher and Shanahan scoffed at the notion.
“You always want relationships with everyone in the league,” said Shanahan. “I have great relationships . . . but at the end of the day, teams are going to go with the best offer. They may like me, but they're not going to give up draft choices for me, I can promise you that."
“We didn’t make a decision because of my relationship with Mike or anyone’s relationship with anybody else,” Fisher said.