I’m sure all of us would like to know by now who the starting quarterback will be for the Browns, but don’t expect anything to change following Saturday’s game against the Tennessee Titans. While some may think that the quarterback job will be all but decided after today, I would venture a guess that Eric Mangini is going to let this go right up to the last minute. That goes in his own final decision-making, not just in his unwillingness to declare either Brady Quinn or Derek Anderson with the upper hand in the competition.
Despite the fact that the first-team offense will be playing during much of the game (which usually includes the starting quarterback), fans should not allow themselves to think that has anything to do with the competition. Knowing Mangini, Quinn will most likely get the start just because it is his turn. We should also expect both Quinn and Anderson to get equal reps in the same situations during the game.
After the game against the Titans, however, there are not many opportunities for these quarterbacks to truly showcase themselves, as the practices get lighter and the fourth preseason game is a joke in preparation for the season opener. Will Mangini at least have an idea of who he is leaning towards to start against that frightening Minnesota Vikings defense? My guess is that he has an idea of who he prefers, but is allowing the competition to play out to see how his “secret favorite” reacts to it. Plus, it messes with the Vikings’ heads in that they have no idea who to prepare for.
In other words, it will be yet another preseason game in which every play could affect this quarterback battle. In that regard, it will be exciting, but I’ll be relieved when this is over and a quarterback will be named. Something tells me though that unless the loser in this battle is traded, the quarterback debate will never be settled.