As the Browns emerge from their bye, they have arguably one more decent chance to say hello to victory: At home on Sunday against the Bengals.
Some think that Browns coach Hue Jackson is concealing his quarterback choice for Sunday in order to keep the Bengals guessing. Jackson says he’s not.
“I think you guys know who I am,” Jackson told reporters on Wednesday. “Until I see guys do certain things [at] practice am I going to make that decision because it all has to fit. It is not just about one guy. It is about a unit playing together. We have not played as well together in several weeks. It is important that we practice, and I feel good about that decision so we can go out and give ourselves the best chance to win.”
One candidate to start is Robert Griffin III. Jackson explained that he needs to see more in practice from Griffin, who suffered a broken shoulder in Week One, before making that decision.
“I do need to see Robert go through the week,” Jackson said. “It is not so much gamesmanship. We are talking about a young man that has not played much football this year. I need to be for sure about everything that could potentially go on. Before you stick him out there, you want to make sure you are putting guys in the right situation, give him the right opportunity. We will keep practicing and we will keep getting these guys ready to play.”
Jackson agreed that one major factor in determining whether Griffin should play is the fact that he has played in only one regular-season game since the end of the 2014 season.
“[T]here is probably some rust there,” Jackson said. “He has not played a lot of football. Practice is only a simulation of what the game could be. The game is a very different game. That is why I am taking every consideration before truly making this decision about who is going to step out there.”
Whoever it is, the Browns need the quarterback to play better than any quarterback has played all year long for the Browns. Otherwise, 0-12 becomes 0-13 and the Browns move to within games against the Bills, Chargers, and Steelers of matching the Lions in 2008 with zero wins in 16 tries.