Despite last week’s candid (and ill-advised) public rant from Browns executive adviser Jim Brown, who is identified on the team’s web site as a member of senior management, that he believes the “right decision” last week was to give Brady Quinn a chance to play quarterback, Browns G.M. Phil Savage said Monday that a switch was never contemplated.
”I’ve talked to people around the league, people who have been in this business for a long time, and you don’t go blowing things up after a couple games,” Savage said. ”You’re not going to be successful in this league doing that.” (Charlie Frye says he agrees with that approach completely.)
”It’s not been any thought of changing quarterbacks, changing the coach, or any of that,” Savage added. “That’s not the thing to do at this juncture of the season. You’ve got to give the people a chance to pull themselves out of the situation. We all put ourselves in this spot and we’re the ones who have got to pull us out of it. . . .
”I never walked out of a meeting thinking that there was any serious consideration about making a switch. Basically every backup in our building needs to be ready. I don’t know how it was framed, but obviously it created a stir. Derek is an easy target. I think our issues went a little bit deeper than the quarterback position.”
Possible translation: “Please don’t blame me for giving Anderson $13 million in guaranteed money on a three-year deal.”
But why would Brown say that there was a debate about making a change if there wasn’t? And why would Crennel say that he was getting Quinn ready to play if he wasn’t?
Then again,FOX’s Jay Glazer reported on Sunday that Quinn literally received only two extra practice reps last week, which prompted us to think that Crennel was merely trying to persuade Brown not to pummel him.
If so, Savage is now in line for Brown’s wrath. And as past coaches and execs in Cleveland have learned, it’s not wise to rile up former players who have the hearts and minds of the fans — and more importantly the ear ownership.