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Help from Peyton
February 5, 2012 - Mike McLain
The Browns could benefit from a decision by a man named Peyton, but his last name isn't Hillis.
With Colts quarterback Peyton Manning all but assured of leaving Indianapolis, there will be several teams interested in acquiring his services. Where he ends up could help improve the Browns' chances of landing Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III with the fourth overall pick in the draft.
Because many teams are interested in landing the services of Griffin, conventional thinking assumes that the Browns would have to trade up with the St. Louis Rams to get the second overall pick. A trade up would mean giving up several prime draft choices, which might be too heavy a price to pay because of needs in many areas.
Manning's addition to one of the Browns' competitors for Griffin would eliminate that team from trading up with the Rams. One possible team is Washington, which reportedly might be interested in signing Manning. Redskins owner Daniel Snyder has never been shy about opening his wallet to bring in veterans.
Taking it a step further, another team could be crossed off the list if Packers backup quarterback Matt Flynn signs elsewhere (perhaps the Miami Dolphins). With the Redskins and Dolphins out of the Griffin sweepstakes, the Browns might be able to select Griffin with the fourth choice and not have to mortgage the future with a trade up.
It will all start to unfold when the free agency signing period begins early next month. It's something to keep in mind.
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