QB Jameis Winston reportedly signs with Browns

New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston (2) warms up before an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2022, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Rusty Jones)
Former New Orleans Saints quarterback Jameis Winston has reportedly signed with the Cleveland Browns. AP Photo/Rusty Jones)

Jameis Winston is reportedly finalizing a one-year, $8.7 million agreement with the Cleveland Browns to become the team's new primary backup, according to Bleacher Report on Tuesday.

After spending the last four seasons as both a backup and starter for the New Orleans Saints, the quarterback is anticipated to provide insurance for Deshaun Watson.

The Browns' starting signal caller is heading into next season following surgery to repair a fractured shoulder socket.

Last season, Cleveland ran through a carousel of backups while Watson dealt with a series of injuries and didn't find success until then-38-year-old Joe Flacco came in and went 4-1 for the team. The Browns openly said that they wanted to bring Flacco back following his Comeback Player of the Year performance.

But as talks between the two sides reached a standstill, and Cleveland missed out on bringing back Jacoby Brissett, the Browns switched gears to Winston.

The 30-year-old's best season in recent memory came in 2021, when he went 5-2, recorded 14 touchdowns and three interceptions. In four seasons with the Saints, the former No. 1 pick finished with a 6-4 record, 2,367 yards, 20 touchdowns and 11 interceptions on 200-of-334 passing.

“I played every role I could play within the organization,” Winston told the Saints News Network. “I’m always going to be an uplifting teammate and uplifting throughout the building. However, my heart truly desires to be starting and taking advantage of the gifts and talents that God has provided me. To be able to have this platform, to be able to build a relationship with the community, able to inspire young kids, and to uplift others. My main goal? I’m still chasing my dream.”

Cleveland finished 11-6, second in the AFC North, and reached the wild-card round of the playoffs, where it was blown out by the Houston Texans, 45-14, on the road.