Appearing at the NFL’s owner meetings in Orlando, Browns GM Ray Farmer answered several questions from reporters today, including Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal and Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Here’s a round-up of some of the highlights, with Twitter links via Ulrich and Cabot:
- After cornerback Joe Haden fueled speculation by tweeting “It’s a crazy business” last night, Farmer insisted that the team has no interest in trading Haden, and would like to keep him in Cleveland for a long time.
- Farmer defended the team’s decision not to attend the Pro Days of top quarterback prospects like Blake Bortles, Teddy Bridgewater, and Johnny Manziel by arguing that those days are “scripted” and saying that the Browns’ absence keeps teams guessing about Cleveland’s intentions. The general manager added that he’s “not leaning in any direction” with the No. 4 pick in the draft.
- Farmer believes Cleveland will have opportunities to trade up or down in the draft, and confirmed that discussions about those possibilities are already underway.
- Asked if the Browns have interest in Mark Sanchez, Farmer said the team would be interested in “anyone who can help us win,” though he didn’t say whether Sanchez was one such player. For now, the GM says he’s comfortable with Brian Hoyer, and that Hoyer’s competition could come from anywhere, including a player in the draft.
- Farmer confirmed that the Browns had interest in Matt Schaub before Houston sent him to the Raiders.
- According to Ulrich, Farmer paused for a few seconds when asked where the Browns stood with offensive lineman Paul McQuistan and defensive end Alex Carrington, before replying, “We’ll see.” Both free agents visited the team last week.
- Cleveland investigated many options for a No. 2 wide receiver and No. 2 cornerback in free agency, but nothing worked out, according to Farmer.
- The Browns are still focused on working out a long-term deal with Alex Mack, who received the transition tag from the club this offseason.