Everyone’s talking about what Donte Whitner was quoted as saying to Peter King’s MMQB this morning. The quote was this.
“It’s been fierce,” Whitner said. “Two guys fighting for their lives. It’s close. I’d say [the locker room] is split about 50-50. We know they both can play.”
While I think a lot of the focus has been on the split within the team and the report cards comparing the two quarterbacks, what Whitner said last is most important to me. If Whitner’s accounting of team sentiment is accurate, then there’s legitimate belief in the locker room that the Browns have not one, but two quarterbacks who can actually play the position.
As I said on Sunday, I’m intrigued by Manziel’s performance and I can’t wait to see more. Maybe I’ll even get to see him with the first team this week on Monday Night Football. I welcome the opportunity to see it. In the end, with the way the Browns have set up their team this year, the quarterback looks to be helped by the running game and not vice versa.
That being the case, all I need is a guy who can perform somewhere close to the middle of the pack of NFL quarterbacks. I don’t need Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning or Tom Brady. I need something approximating Alex Smith, Carson Palmer or even Andy Dalton plus a great defense and running game.
It seems like Donte Whitner is saying the Browns’ locker room thinks they might have two guys capable of that.