Tuesday, May 29, 2012

There's no controversy

What controversy?

There is no controversy.

Elements of the media community have attempted to label the Browns’ quarterback situation a controversy.

It’s not.

Really, it’s not.

It isn’t chiseled in granite yet, but Brandon Weeden will be under center, or a reasonable facsimile thereof, on Sept. 9 at Cleveland Stadium when the Philadelphia Eagles come to town.

Now Mike Holmgren and Tom Heckert Jr. say they want Weeden to be in that place on that Sunday afternoon, but won’t come out and say it is definite.

That’s because they are walking a fine line of trust with Colt McCoy. And because of that, just about everyone in the media community scares up the word “controversy” when discussing the Cleveland quarterback situation.

All Holmgren and Heckert are doing is fanning the flames.

The club, of course, will say there’s no controversy. There will be the other C word: competition.

Coach Pat Shurmur has been placed in the uncomfortable position of having to mollify McCoy, who no doubt will force the issue at some point in training camp when it becomes apparent there is no competition.

That is if he is still with the club.

The only controversy regarding the quarterbacks is which style of offense the Browns choose to use this season with a quarterback who is a virtual stranger when placing his hands under center.

Oh sure, we heard Weeden looked good when working under center during OTAs. But when there is no pass rush and everyone is in shorts and a helmet, you’d look good under center, too.

So the Browns are faced with a dilemma. Do they try to put Weeden on the fast track to learn the pro-style offense? Or do they attempt to make him more comfortable in his rookie season by incorporating the spread offense he ran so successfully at Oklahoma State?

The rookie ran nearly 100% no huddle at OSU. After too many seasons of stodgy, almost predictable, offensive football, could a no-huddle approach be in Cleveland’s football future? The thought titillates.

With a guy like Weeden, whose comfort and confidence level rises when he’s in the shotgun, that’s a distinct possibility. It worked in Carolina last season when Cam Newton shocked the National Football League with a sensational rookie season.

For that to happen with the Browns, however, the offensive coaching staff would have to swallow hard and throw conventional football out the window. It’s an old dog/new tricks kind of thing.

Now that would be controversial.


  1. i like it Rich, let's hope they have some guts and let it happen!

  2. I don't get shocked very often in the world of sports, or anything for that matter. But if the Browns went no-huddle and shotgun all the time, I'd be shocked. At the same time, I'd be thrilled.

    What do the Browns have to lose by going radical? Another 4-12 or 5-11 season?

  3. Wouldn't the shotgun hurt the running game?
    Seems Richardson would have just that much
    more ground to cover.


  4. Not if they use him correctly. Shotgun teams have had success running draw and trap plays. Keeps the opposing team guessing. With an offensive line that is adept at run blocking, it will work. Direct snaps work also.

    Granted, it's unconventional. But the Panthers made it work nicely last season. DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart combined for 1,600 yards on the ground. The Panthers' big problem was on defense. It seemed they had to outscore the opponent each week in order to have a chance at winning. The defense was stopping no one.