Brandon Weeden named starting quarterback for the Cleveland Browns.
Shocking. Absolutely shocking.
What in the world is Pat Shurmur thinking? Has he lost his senses? Has he no respect for Colt McCoy? Or Seneca Wallace?
Naming a rookie who has never taken a snap as a professional as the starting quarterback even before he takes his first snap as a professional? Unheard of. Blasphemous.
OK, enough with the sarcasm. Time to get serious.
Speaking of getting serious, what took Shurmur so long to do what many of us expected him to do the day after Weeden was drafted? What in the world was he waiting for?
Did he expect McCoy to develop arm strength? Or Wallace to gain three inches in height?
Any way you cut it, this is the correct decision. Shurmur’s job depends on how well Weeden and his young offense performs this season. In many ways, Weeden is Shurmur’s lifeline.
It’s incumbent on the head coach and offensive coordinator Brad Childress to shepherd the 28-year-old rookie through the third-toughest schedule in the National Football League.
It won’t be easy. There will be numerous rough spots along the 16-game schedule. The highs will be inordinately high and the lows will be depressingly low. That’s to be expected, even anticipated.
Naming Weeden the starter now removes any and all doubts that might have existed in the locker room. Everyone now knows who the boss of the huddle will be. They know their fortunes ride on his strong arm.
Offense is all about finesse and rhythm, especially in the passing game. The more Weeden and his offensive line and receivers work together in practice, the sharper they should be in games. Precise timing is essential.
So all the pressure is off now. Or is it?
Up until now, who would start at quarterback was a guessing game, although it had to be in the back of Weeden’s mind he’d be named the starter. If anything, his confidence level has risen with each practice.
The question is how will McCoy handle being Weeden’s caddy? He had to know the deck was stacked against him. He has acted in a professional manner in training camp, saying all the right things. But one has to wonder how much longer he’ll be satisfied to play that role.
Wallace is an entirely different matter. He says he would be upset if he was the No. 3 quarterback on the roster. Fact is he’s just hanging on and is happy to be on an NFL roster.
The way McCoy is throwing in camp, not many tears would be shed if Wallace wound up in another uniform this season. Add to that McCoy’s friendly contract and perhaps that’s the road the Browns should travel.
I’d much rather have McCoy come off the bench than Wallace in the event of an injury or a blowout.
But for right now, Weeden is the man. He’s the quarterback of the present and future. And that’s the way it should be.
Maybe, just maybe, he’ll perform as well as another 28-year-old rookie in the NFL a long time ago. That’s how old Roger Staubach was when he took over the Dallas Cowboys in 1970. And we all know where his bust resides.