Originally posted on Waiting For Next Year  |  Last updated 1/24/13
The Cleveland Browns have been committal about being non-committal about their quarterback situation. From Rob Chudzinski to Michael Lombardi and yesterday Norv Turner the Browns have been steadfast in putting barely a single word on the record that leads anyone to believe that Weeden is first on the depth chart right this very second. Even if you’ve somehow found a way to infer that, it is only by default because that’s the way the season ended and there hasn’t been a roster move that easily leads everyone to speculation otherwise. The Browns claim to need to see more tape study, but it seems to me that a need for more tape study is all the sign of a lack of confidence that I need to see. I am not saying anything about Brandon Weeden, personally. I think he had a pretty typical rookie year, statistically speaking. He definitely trailed many of his rookie brethren in terms of rookie performance too. I’m just characterizing the vibes I’m reading from the public comments thus far. And maybe it’s true that they need to see more tape. Maybe they will unleash those hours of footage of Shurmur-led practices and decide that Weeden is a guy they can mold and that under their new tutelage he’ll become a front line NFL starter. It just seems to me that the guy who plays the most important position on the team who also put 15 games of real NFL video into the universe this season is likely to have made enough of an impression on the team that they might be willing to say something that tips their hand that they like him. Of course that’s only true if they were given a positive impression. To be fair, Norv Turner was somewhat complimentary of Weeden because he helped the Browns beat Turner’s Chargers this season. Then again, Weeden had a QB rating of 55.9 against the Chargers completing 11 of 27 passes for 129 yards in a 7-6 win. “Brandon’s a very, very young player in terms of his experience,” Turner said before adding “but he did good things in the game when we played and he did good things in the games that we evaluated getting ready for that game.” That’s not wholly uncomplimentary, but he polished it off by saying, “So for me to give you a big evaluation on Brandon would not be fair. I, first of all, haven’t met him and I just started looking at tape.” I’m sure his tape study is different now than it was when the Chargers were game planning, but didn’t Turner just say they reviewed his tape before going up against the Browns? That line about tape study should sound familiar because it is almost exactly what Rob Chudzinski has said so far. To me that’s just enough of a company line about a guy who is far from being a locked in starter. Again, this isn’t to say anything about the qualifications of Colt McCoy or even down the depth chart to Thaddeus Lewis. This is just to say the old adage (that everyone’s tired of me quoting) is still true. If you don’t know if you have a quarterback, then you don’t have one. If you have a controversy, you don’t have one. When you have one you’ll know it. The best case scenario for Brandon Weeden right now is that the Browns truly mean it when they say they don’t know yet. More likely though, I think they would know enough about what they’ve seen so far that they’d be expressing some confidence in what they might expect him to turn into with their coaching and with their systems. But they would only give us that information if they felt confident in him. All that being the case, I’d be surprised if they didn’t at least explore options at the position this off-season including the draft. What position always rises in the NFL draft? Quarterback, of course. Could it rise all the way to number six? Would that even get the Browns the best QB prospect in the draft? Probably not. I know it might seem like I’m trolling with a question like that, but if you don’t know and it’s the most important question that any team needs to answer, you never know what depths – or draft heights – teams will go to achieve it. I still wouldn’t bet on the Browns doing anything like that because I just don’t see the QB prospects in the draft this year, but a bold move for a QB this off-season still wouldn’t shock me either by free agency or by trade. In the end, this isn’t great news for Brandon Weeden, but it is good news for Browns fans, I think. One of the most frustrating parts of last season for me was the lack of true competition at quarterback as Shurmur and company handed Brandon Weeden the job. I think Weeden’s ceiling is higher than Colt McCoy’s, but I don’t doubt for one second that Colt McCoy gave the Browns the better chance to win in the first quarter of the season. The Browns were too ingrained in old school thinking to be bold enough to face potential controversy and try to win games at any cost. If that meant starting Colt McCoy for the first four to eight games and then giving way to Brandon Weeden, so be it. We’ve seen it too many times now. Russell Wilson wasn’t supposed to be the starter in Seattle this year. It was supposed to be Matt Flynn. Colin Kaepernick wasn’t supposed to be the starter in San Francisco. It was supposed to be Alex White. Go back in time even further. Tom Brady wasn’t supposed to supplant Drew Bledsoe, especially after Bledsoe went down due to injury. The Browns seem like they might be poised to make whatever decision they think will win them the most games right away. Never mind where anyone was drafted, or who started the most games this past season. Also maybe we can forget a lip-service sham of a quarterback competition that was allowed Brandon Weeden to sleepwalk through the pre-season as the Browns sputtered out of the gates. You’re supposed to do whatever you can to win football games. If that means Brandon Weeden starts, then fine, but I think I’m happy that they haven’t named him the starter just yet.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Cubs close door on Sammy Sosa reunion after bizarre comments

Rick Pitino restrained from going after North Carolina fan

76ers trading Ersan Ilyasova to Hawks for Tiago Splitter, pick

Budapest drops 2024 Olympic bid, leaving only Los Angeles and Paris, which could ban some participants

DeMarcus Cousins was ‘praying’ for a better supporting cast with Sacramento

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Nets trading Bojan Bogdanovic to Wizards

Elliott spoke with police after 'best friend' caught with gun

Jets reportedly believe Jay Cutler can compete in AFC East

Report: 'Melo could waive no-trade clause for Clippers after season

Rivers: Paul medically cleared to play, could return Thursday

Trea Turner missed part of Nats camp Wedneday for jury duty

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

Box Score 2/22: Not everyone is happy with the new intentional walk rule

Teams and players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

'Playmakers' in Ice Cube's league who can help the Cavs

Box Score 2/21: It's trade heartbreak season

The guard tandems you'd want in a 2-on-2 tournament

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher to win the MVP award

Teams, players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

'Playmakers' in Ice Cube's league who can help the Cavs

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker