April 24, 2014

Isn’t It Nice Not To Be Talking About a QB “Controversy”?

Couch or Holcomb. Anderson or Quinn. Frye or Dilfer. Delhomme or McCoy. Such was the life of the Browns fan during pre-seasons past. Who would step  up and be the quarterback? Which of the crappy options would be “best”? Who was keeping the seat warm for whom?

I’m not here to say Colt McCoy is on his way to the Pro Bowl. What I am here to say, however, is that McCoy clearly is the starting quarterback for this team, for 2011. He’s the leader. He’s the guy with the best handle on the new offense. He’s the guy the other guys follow.

And man, is it nice not to be talking about the quarterback this year.

I will freely admit: I had NO IDEA who was going to be the quarterback in the fourth quarter. I knew it would be Colt in the first, Seneca for the second and third, and then… Jarrett Brown? I know I haven’t been as completely immersed in the Browns this summer because of the lockout, but when he came in (and promptly threw a horrible interception) I was flashed back to nights of saying, “I’m curious to see how Josh Booty does,” or “Man, that Luke McCown has an arm!” in these first pre-season games.

Not this year.

I’m not going to sit here and tell you that the Packers’ first-team defense was the same one that won the Super Bowl; teams are notorious for throwing out “vanilla” defenses in the pre-season. Even still, it’s hard to look past Colt McCoy’s night. 9-for-10, 135 yards, and a TD. 152.1 rating. He looked sharp. He knew where the ball needed to go. His throws weren’t always perfect (the seam route to Ben Watson, for example, was more a great play on the ball by Watson than a great throw), but I never felt like he was forcing something that wasn’t there. The TD throw to Cribbs was perfectly placed.

In short, McCoy had command of the offense, both in terms of scheme and in terms of the players on the field. And that is a nice bonus to have this year.

It was clear that McCoy has a better hold of the offense than does Seneca Wallace. This is not a knock on Wallace; it’s a commentary on McCoy and how hard he’s clearly worked.

Most of all, it was just nice to turn to my wife and say, “I’m so glad we don’t have to hear about who the quarterback is, will be, or should be.” As Jake Delhomme showed against Green Bay last season, first-pre-season-game offensive excellence does not translate to regular season success. But, it can’t be over-stated how nice a change it is this year to know that McCoy’s our starter, there’s no real debate, there’s nobody waiting in the wings down the depth chart for the fans to clammor for at the first sign of a rough patch. Hopefully the Browns can use that continuity to build some strength across the offense as a whole.

As the pre-season continues, it will be interesting to see if McCoy continues to build on Saturday’s performance. One thing is for sure, however: we won’t have to debate which quarterback was better or would give the team the best chance to win. For once, it’s was pretty clear-cut.


Photo Credit: Joshua Gunter/Cleveland Plain Dealer

  • http://gooddoctorzeus.blogspot.com DocZeus


  • http://www.60bpm.com/ Robbie

    When I saw Wallace throw that ball down the sideline and way over the receiver’s head (something he did over and over and over again when he was in games last season), combined with McCoy’s performance… I felt happy because I knew the talk of “who’s gonna give this team the best chance to win NOW” was over. Wallace is an eight year career backup for a reason.

  • JK

    I was just rewatching the preseason game this morning and thinking how nice it was to not have to worry about a QB controversy. Seems like it was something we had to worry about every year since we’ve been back.

  • http://www.adapterdesign.com/ adapterdesign

    Meanwhile, in Denver, I get to hear about Tebow vs. Quinn. It’s like Quinn can’t escape QB competitions.

  • mgbode

    well, I know there are plenty of places where there is a QB controversy. It’s just not a 2nd name. It’s McCoy vs. McCoy’s arm strength. McCoy vs. Luck. Et cetera.

    Hopefully, he goes out in the real games and displays what we have all seen from him in glimpses.

  • mgbode

    time for my post about how we have had the most different starting QBs in week1 from any NFL team the past now 13 seasons.

    that’s right. 10 different opening week QBs in 13 years. and that doesn’t even get into all the backups and 3rd stringers that have played during those seasons. here we go:

    2011 Colt McCoy? (barring the unspeakable)
    2010 Delhomme
    2009 Brady Quinn
    2008 Derek Anderson
    2007 Charlie Frye (1 half only, but he was the guy who started)
    2006 Charlie Frye
    2005 Trent Dilfer
    2004 Jeff Garcia
    2003 Kelly Holcomb (oh how we pine for 3 QBs in 5 seasons)
    2002 Kelly Holcomb
    2001 Tim Couch
    2000 Tim Couch
    1999 Ty Detmer

  • Subadai

    I think that some of the credit here belongs to Holmgren for (this year at least) resisting his near pathological temptation to take a QB in the upper middle rounds of every draft.

    There are only two QBs on the roster that have a chance to make ay impact this year and McCoy is the best – so far. If there were a rookie that was drafted this year (ie, Malett), we all know what we would be thinking.

  • jimkanicki

    @4 adapter.. and down in charlotte… once derek anderson got in in the fourth qtr he delivered a 156 qb rating and a TD to ice the panthers to a win vs the giants. lol… you KNOW there will be panther fans who will want him starting… lolz.

  • bobby

    In Delhomme’s defense, he had a good game against TB last year and then had his high ankle sprain and was never healthy again. By the time he was we were so far out and McCoy showed enough to “wow” fans into demanding he starts more.

  • Garry Owen

    WKNR is horrible!!!!