“Open” competition at the quarterback position in Cleveland

AP

The Browns currently have four quarterbacks under contract. For now, any of them could end up being the Week One starter.

“This thing is open,” coach Hue Jackson told reporters on Saturday at the team’s rookie minicamp regarding the quarterback competition. It really is.”

For now, second-year third-rounder Cody Kessler will sit atop the depth chart.

“They will all get reps,” Jackson said. “Obviously, Cody will start this out. He deserves the opportunity to. Brock [Osweiler] is here and Kevin [Hogan] is, too, but [rookie DeShone Kizer] is going to get reps. The only way to get better is to get reps. I will find a way. I have been through this before a few times. We will get these guys reps, and he has to get some because I have to continue to evaluate him.”

By “reps,” Jackson presumably means “first-team reps.” For a true competition to occur, the candidates need to be getting chances to run the starting offense.

Jackson said that Osweiler, an afterthought in the trade that brought the quarterback and a second-round pick from Houston, will get a chance to compete, but that he won’t necessarily be No. 2 from the get-go behind Kessler.

“Brock is learning our system and learning the things that we do at the position,” Jackson said. “I think the other guys have done it. They have been through the process with me and understand how to play. That doesn’t mean that he can’t have an opportunity to exceed or succeed anybody.”

For now, though, it’s Kessler’s job to lose.

“They have to take it from him,” Jackson said. “They better take it from him because I know him — he is not going to give it up. It will be fun. That is what competition is all about. Until someone takes something from someone and shows that they can do it at a high level play in and play out, then we have to keep going in the direction where we’re traveling.”

It feels like it’s traveling toward Kizer (pictured) eventually taking snaps in games, whether it happens in Week One or Week 17 or somewhere in between.

59 responses to ““Open” competition at the quarterback position in Cleveland

  1. To paraphrase an old saying…if you have four QB’s, you don’t have any.
    However, Kessler could be a solid, competent starter, despite his lack of great arm strength, IF he can stay reasonably healthy and on the field. His lack of good deep-passing ability, as well as the durability issues, probably limit him as a long-term starter, though.
    Kizer has the size and the arm talent, but is very inexperienced, and has been up and down in terms of his approach to the game.
    There is every chance that the Browns long-term starting QB is in the next draft.

  2. Open competition, that’s great I just booked my flight to Cleveland most anyone can play quarterback for an 0 – 16 team!!

  3. Don’t care what anyone says, Kessler played well last year and is tough as nails…Kid took a beating with basically an expansion team(besides Joe Thomas) at offensive line

    Go Browns!

  4. Shouldn’t every team make it an open competition always? Even teams like the Patriots or Packers where its darn obvious who’s going to win out should still nake it a cometition. If nothing else its still going to sharpen the guys that don’t win it.

  5. All of those quarterbacks…And, in reality, the Browns still don’t have one that’s got a chance to start and build around.
    What a joke..

  6. Osweiler is the best QB on the roster. He’s won a lot of football games already, and he’s nowhere near the top of his game. The best QBs are the ones who can quickly figure out what the defenses are doing, and Brock is still a very young QB. He’s been standing on the sidelines most of his career. How many different offensive coordinators has he had already? Give this kid a couple years of stability, and you’ll have a good QB. Kessler could be a decent backup. Hogan could be e decent emergency #3 guy. The Browns are fine at QB. Kizer was a wasted pick.

  7. One thing is certain: If you are pitting one qb vs another in a four way dance, the pressure is on Jackson and his offensive staff to choose the right one to start. They had better have the right backup too. Nothing is set in stone, but you definitely don’t want to be playing musical qbs halfway through the season due to indecision and poor evaluation. If you do pick the right starter, what if he gets injured week two? Jackson needs to sort this out soon.

  8. That’s what Hue said last year when it was painfully obvious RG me was his choice. It got so bad that the media had to resort to raving about how fabulous RG me was looking in 3 man drills. Hue hugging RG me was a great touch.

  9. tonebones says:
    May 14, 2017 10:16 AM
    Osweiler is the best QB on the roster………….

    ——-

    Osweiler is terrible. Elway knew it, and laughed his as s off when Houston signed him for 70 mil or whatever ridiculous number it was that they threw at him (before EVER EVEN MEETING HIM!!!) lol…

    Cleveland will cut Brock for his bad attitude and his horrible play…. PROBABLY before Week 1.

  10. cueghost says:
    May 14, 2017 10:53 AM

    Osweiler is terrible. Elway knew it…
    ____________________

    Is that why he only offered him a 3 year contract?

  11. It’s funny how there are so many different viewpoints. My take is Kessler is easily the best QB on the roster right now. Very accurate, smart, and a competitive tough kid. He will surprise many naysayers. With a much improved Oline and year two in the offense, he will prove his worth. The two concussions last year are concerning though.

  12. The B-rowns have an opening at every position, especially in that front offense. Hue Jackson.. poor guy.. great coach in a lose-lose situation.

  13. RandyinRoxbury says:
    May 14, 2017 11:15 AM
    It’s been open QB competition in Cleveland since Otto Graham retired.
    =====================

    Had you gone with Kosar or Testaverde you might have had a point. Never ceases to amaze how little you know about football chipster

  14. The Patriots do have an open competition every year, that’s why Brady works so hard in the offseason. If you think Belichick won’t bench him the moment he starts to slip you haven’t learned a thing in 20 years.

  15. The Browns QB situation is less of a question mark than years past since they know Kessler can do the job. The guy came out of no where to be the second best QB of the 2016 draft class skill wise so the others will have to be very good to beat him out.

    The one thing that annoys me to death is the saying “If you have mulitple QB’s you have no QB’s”. The only people who believe that are guys who have jobs on ESPN who have those jobs because they sucked at coaching.

    If you have multiple QB’s you’re the Patriots or Steelers who have winning records even when their starter goes down. The Browns are a team who’s 3rd string QB gets regular season playing time and whose best seasons have all been with backups (Kelly Holcomb, Derek Anderson and Brian Hoyer). Having multiple QB’s is a requirement there not a luxury.

  16. RandyinRoxbury says:
    May 14, 2017 11:15 AM
    It’s been open QB competition in Cleveland since Otto Graham retired.

    ————————–

    That’s a very unfair assessment. Since Bernie Kosar mabye, but not Otto Graham

  17. Osweiler is a victim of his own greed and competitive nature. Left Broncos for a ton of money because they sat him after 7 games and re-inserted Peyton for the super bowl run. He took the money and ran to the Texans who really screwed him up.. from Fitzpatrick to Osweiler O’Brien hasn’t made any QB better. Not one!!!

  18. Kessler and Kizer need to get reps and Im sure they both will.
    Mainly because its silly to not give your draft choice a chance to succeed.
    They may not pan out or maybe they end up just as solid back up – you have to find out.

    Osweiler and Hogan – ya whatever. They may have a use but the ceiling is low.

  19. Kaepernick is better than anyone they will trot out at QB this year. Too bad the Browns don’t want to actually win games this year. They would rather tank for Allen, Darnold and/or Rosen

  20. @mrfrostyj .. while I loved Kessler in college, to say he was the 2nd best QB from 2016 draft is silly. Wentz and Prescott were miles better than him.

  21. The Browns messed up the QB position this offseason. They should have never made that ridiculous trade for Osweiler. They should have brought in a smart veteran qb as a stopgap for a year or 2 while they rebuild so that Kessler and Kizer could have been groomed for the starting position. Then one of those youngsters could have walked into an offense that had the pieces they need to be successful. A veteran qb would have been able to teach these guys how to watch film and prepare for games, The situation that Kessler and Kizer are in is not good for their development.

  22. All, save Hogan, will see action this year. Next years qb class is too strong to take a wait until next year approach

  23. lajmahal says:
    May 14, 2017 1:19 PM

    @mrfrostyj .. while I loved Kessler in college, to say he was the 2nd best QB from 2016 draft is silly. Wentz and Prescott were miles better than him.

    ————————————————————–

    I didn’t use opinion. I said stats wise. Kessler’s completion percentage and QB rating were better than Wentz making him the actual 2nd best rookie QB of the class.

  24. If Osweiler can work on his mechanics and improve his accurracy, he has a chance to be a good QB in this league. He studied under Manning for 4 years so he has the mental part of the game down and now just needs the physical part to go along.

  25. mrfrostyj says:
    May 14, 2017 2:18 PM
    lajmahal says:
    May 14, 2017 1:19 PM

    @mrfrostyj .. while I loved Kessler in college, to say he was the 2nd best QB from 2016 draft is silly. Wentz and Prescott were miles better than him.

    ————————————————————–

    I didn’t use opinion. I said stats wise. Kessler’s completion percentage and QB rating were better than Wentz making him the actual 2nd best rookie QB of the class.
    ————–

    Sample size matters dude. If Kessler’s stats look better than Wentz’s, it’s because he started far fewer games. All you need to know is that 32 out of 32 NFL all you need to know is that 32 out of 32 NFL GMs would take Wentz over at Kessler in a heartbeat.

  26. patsfan4lifesbchamps says:
    May 14, 2017 3:06 PM
    If Osweiler can work on his mechanics and improve his accurracy, he has a chance to be a good QB in this league. He studied under Manning for 4 years so he has the mental part of the game down and now just needs the physical part to go along.
    ______________________

    What are you talking about? While he does sail the occasional ball it’s easy to see the bulk of Osweiler’s problems aren’t physical. He doesn’t read and adjust worth a damn. Kubiak and O’Brien are both highly regarded for their abilities with QB’s but weren’t able to get much out of him. What makes you think studying under Manning was any help at all? It wasn’t Manning’s job to teach him and by most accounts he didn’t even throw the kid a bone until he got called out for not doing it in the press. Einstein, who actually was a teaching professor for much of his life, taught literally thousands of students, none of whom won a Nobel Prize.

  27. Hue Jackson says “It will be fun.” Right. Should be every bit as fun as betting sides on Cleveland during the regular season. Last year’s Browns covered the point spread a hilarious four times. Fun times.

  28. Any looooooong suffering Saints fan, feels the pain of the Browns fans. For the sake of the Browns faithful, I hope the organization gets it together.

  29. maestro1899 says:
    May 14, 2017 12:58 PM

    Kaepernick is better than anyone they will trot out at QB this year. Too bad the Browns don’t want to actually win games this year. They would rather tank for Allen, Darnold and/or Rosen

    Hardly. He’s not a pro style QB. Why would anyone want to change their offense?

  30. maust1013 says:
    May 14, 2017 11:56 AM
    RandyinRoxbury says:
    May 14, 2017 11:15 AM
    It’s been open QB competition in Cleveland since Otto Graham retired.
    =====================

    Had you gone with Kosar or Testaverde you might have had a point. Never ceases to amaze how little you know about football chipster
    ===
    It’s a joke bean breath. Enough with your chipster obsession.

  31. I still fondly remember Huey, when he was HC of the Raiders, on the day they hired McKenzie, running around the Raider Compound screaming “I Am In Control!” Good times.

  32. damcmp says:
    May 14, 2017 12:32 PM
    Osweiler is a victim of his own greed and competitive nature. Left Broncos for a ton of money because they sat him after 7 games and re-inserted Peyton for the super bowl run. He took the money and ran to the Texans who really screwed him up.. from Fitzpatrick to Osweiler O’Brien hasn’t made any QB better. Not one!!!

    ——————–

    In all fairness to Osweiler, I would have snatched up that deal too. If you are mad then blame the guys that made the offer, not the guy that took it.

  33. maestro1899 says:
    May 14, 2017 12:58 PM
    Kaepernick is better than anyone they will trot out at QB this year. Too bad the Browns don’t want to actually win games this year. They would rather tank for Allen, Darnold and/or Rosen

    ———————

    The Browns have a bunch of unknowns that have shown some pretty good promise before. They could hit on one and should find out where their ceilings are before looking further. Kaepernicks ceiling is well known and its not that great. He would be a waste of time for the Browns. And frankly the Browns current situation would be a waste of time for Kaep. The best thing Kaepernick can do right now is just sit tight. Camps havent even started yet. Once they do there will be some movement. A few injuries, a few guys that show their coaches they still dont have it and arent going to get it. (Ok, thats a bit like Kaep but at least he has a flash of old history before the bad stretch) It really does not surprise me that Kaep is not hired right now in the same vein as it doesnt surprise me that Cutler and Fitzpatrick arent either. Kaep does need to come off any idea he is an elite starter, thats nonsense and reports are mixed whether he is still looking for that. He needs to shoot for a backup slot with a shot at at least competing for a starting job. A team like the Jets or Bills might have that after they shake things out in camp. Or on a team with a hotshot rookie that looks like a year developing before going in Kaep can be a placeholder while he proves he can still play football well and when the game counts and opposing coaches are scheming against him, not just running up garbage time stats. (So it well help him to get with a team that isnt into garbage time as early and often as SF has been). Kaep being effective against an opposing coach that is actively trying to stop him is not something thats been seen in years now so he needs to have that happen before any minds will change.

    Those that think he is owed a job because of his heroic protest are kidding themselves. I dont care if you liked it, things like that do not obligate GMs and owners to hire guys that havent shown they can do the job after several years of trying.

  34. VenerableAxiom says:
    May 15, 2017 2:21 AM

    It’s a joke bean breath. Enough with your chipster obsession.
    ====================

    You reap as you sow little guy

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