Baxter in, Holcomb out

Some interesting news tonight.

First, the Browns have signed former Ravens starting cornerback Gary Baxter to a multi-year deal [LINK], a solid move but, considering the numbers involved, a move that could come back to haunt the Browns. Baxter is a good corner, certainly better than the guy he was brought in to replace, Anythony Henry. But like Henry, you’ve got to wonder if, in a free-agent class so deep at corner, Baxter didn’t command too much money. Reports say the deal is for six years and $30 million with a $10.5 million signing bonus, major bucks for a corner who tallied one interception last year. Still, he’s a big guy (6-2, 204 pounds) and, better yet, Baltimore’s loss is our gain, which is always a plus.

The more surprising development, though, is the Bills agreeing in principle to a four-year, $6.6 million deal with quarterback Kelly Holcomb [LINK]. Considering Romeo Crennel was apparently ready to name Holcomb his starter next year, the eight-year veteran’s decision to sign with Buffalo, where he’ll most likely back up 2004 draftee J.P. Losman, is rather shocking. Then again, with the roller coaster Holcomb’s been riding the past couple years in Cleveland, he may very well have been looking for a fresh start.

Now the big question for the Browns and their fans is: Who will be the quarterback in 2005? Trent Dilfer? Jay Fiedler? Brad Johnson? Something tells me Romeo and Phil Savage won’t hand the reins over to Luke McCown.

Following the signing of former Patriots guard Joe Andruzzi and former Cincinnati punter Kyle Richardson, it’s encouraging to see the Browns continue to stay active with the Baxter acquisition. Hopefully they got the right guy, and hopefully they’ll get the right guy when they make a move for a starting quarterback.

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