Cleveland Browns: Browns Named Weeden Starting QB, Sort of

Michael FitzpatrickCorrespondent IMay 22, 2012

Brandon Weeden should start at QB for Cleveland
Brandon Weeden should start at QB for ClevelandJason Miller/Getty Images

Well, it's official. Almost. Brandon Weeden is going to be the Browns' starting quarterback. General manager Tom Heckert said as much while addressing a group calling itself the "Browns Backers of Akron," according to

"The best guy is going to play, and we fully expect Brandon to be that guy. That's our goal, is to have him be the guy.

"You can write about it and talk about it however you want. But I think when we say 'open competition,' the best guy is going to play. That's the way it is, but we drafted Brandon Weeden to be that guy. You draft a guy 22nd in the draft, you think he's gonna be that guy.

"Now if he's not, and Colt (McCoy) plays better or Seneca [Wallace], whoever, but right now that's our goal is to have him be the guy."

So it certainly sounds like the Browns have committed to Weeden, the 28-year-old former minor league pitcher.

He should be an upgrade to Colt McCoy.

McCoy is gritty and has good leadership ability, but his arm seems too weak. The Browns receiving corps that struggled a year ago with dropped passes should improve because Weeden throws such a nice ball. A lot of those drops came on poorly thrown balls by McCoy.

The Browns would be wise to keep both McCoy and Wallace if they can. Quarterbacks rarely make it through the NFL season unscathed, and it's always nice to have a solid backup.

If those two do remain on the team they'll have to bite their tongues when asked about playing time by a Cleveland media that is always looking to play up a quarterback controversy. If they can do that and mentor Weeden in the West Coast offense, they'll be a positive for the team.

Weeden will also thrive with the help of a solid running game. First-round draft choice Trent Richardson should provide solid production on the ground and can catch the ball out of the backfield.