Let's get something out of the way before we go too deep into the article. Odds are pretty high that the Cleveland Browns third string quarterback, Colt McCoy, is going to have a day on Sunday that he will probably want to forget before the fourth quarter.
The Pittsburgh Steelers defense has been nothing short of dominant so far this year. Excepting the Baltimore Ravens game in which the blitz was virtually non-existant in terms of play calling, the pressure that they have been putting on quarterbacks has been debilitating to their opponents. Ask Matt Ryan and Vince Young if you don't believe me.
Living in Austin, TX, I have had my fair share of Colt McCoy and the University of Texas and it is worth a cautionary note to the Steelers that McCoy can play, and he is not your normal third stringer. Yes, he's a rookie, but he also has a very long list of accomplishments in his football career while for the most part being underestimated. The Steelers should also not forget that they lost to this very same Cleveland team with their playoff lives in the balance. A team that was quarterbacked by Brady Quinn. Who isn't exactly lighting it up in the NFL.
McCoy came to the University of Texas from Tuscola, TX, with a population of less than 800. The knocks on him right away were that he hadn't played against quality teams, he wasn't big enough, and his arm wasn't strong enough for major college football. Those are many of the same criticisms that caused him to fall to the Cleveland Browns as the 85th overall pick during the third round of last year's NFL draft.
All McCoy did at Texas as a four-year starter was set the NCAA record for most victories as a Division I quarterback with 45. He finished second in the Heisman balloting to Oklahoma's Sam Bradford, while winning 13 of the top 15 major college player awards in the nation as a senior. Sam Bradford is off to a pretty good start with the St. Louis Rams and the Browns are a better team than the Rams.
In addition to his 158.25 career passer rating, he also threw for 112 touchdowns. That is more impressive as a statistic when you consider that Texas ran the same zone read offense that they were running while Vince Young was winning Texas a National Championship. On that note, McCoy ran for another 1,589 yards and 20 touchdowns during his college career. In total that is an average of 33 touchdowns per year over four years. Not bad.
The Browns are a currently a 14-point underdog to the Steelers going into the weekend which should give you a pretty good indication as to the thinking around the country on this game. That said, the Steelers need to guard against being over confident with a returning Ben Roethlisberger, looking ahead to the Miami Dolphins, or underestimating Colt McCoy.
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