The Cleveland Browns are trying to avoid finishing last in the AFC North once again, and on Thursday signed wide receiver Dwayne Bowe in that vein to a two-year deal, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. Bowe, 30, played his first eight seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs after being their first-round pick in the 2007 NFL Draft.
Bowe provides either Johnny Manziel, Josh McCown or Whoever The Heck Is Quarterback with a large target. At 6’2 and 221 pounds, Bowe lacks elite speed but is a tough cover in man-to-man because of his physical nature. The former LSU star has certainly slowed in recent years productivity-wise, but could still be a valuable asset to a Browns team without any legitimate playmaker on offense.
Bowe had a terrific, Pro Bowl campaign in 2010, hauling in 72 catches for 1,162 yards and a league-leading 15 receiving touchdowns. In 2011, Bowe registered 1,159 yards but since then has not eclipsed 802 yards since. The Browns are getting a solid player, but one on the downside.
It is unfortunate we will likely never know how terrific Bowe could have truly been. Consider that Bowe has played with Damon Huard, Brodie Croyle, Matt Cassel, Tyler Palko, Brady Quinn and Alex Smith throughout his career. When Smith is the best quarterback you have ever had, by a mile, you know it has been a rough stretch.
Things are almost certain not to be better in that department with Cleveland.