SATURDAY, 8:55am: While the Browns clearly want to secure that elusive first win, coach Jackson acknowledged that the quarterback decision was partly motivated by the future.
“He has some uncanny ability. He has some moxie, some poise and he has demonstrated that. He has done some good things in games, but you have to do it over a number of opportunities to really know that it is truly in there,” Jackson said (via Patrick Maks of ClevelandBrowns.com).
“That’s why I need to keep playing him to evaluate this and to know what we see is right and for sure. I will not get to know these things if I do not play him. It is best to let us find out. We understand the situation we are in. The beautiful part about it all is our team does not look at it as if our coaches are not giving ourselves the best chance to win. We feel like he will help us, and then we have a very capable guy in Josh, if something was to happen, that can go in there and play as well. I feel good about where we are right now.”
FRIDAY, 12:12pm: Browns coach Hue Jackson announced that Cody Kessler will start at quarterback on Sunday. The rookie will be slotted ahead of Josh McCown, even though McCown is healthy and able to go on Sunday against Dallas.
Clearly, at 0-8, the Browns are playing for the future and not for the current season. When McCown was under center for the Browns, he showed that he can move the offense down the field, even if he’s not exactly a world-beater. Kessler doesn’t air it out the way that the veteran does, but he is obviously in their future plans whereas McCown is not.
McCown, 37, is under contract through the 2017 season and is slated to carry a $5.04MM cap number next year. However, Cleveland can cut him loose before June 1st and save $4.375MM against just $666K in dead money. Today’s move isn’t a signal that McCown is a goner, of course, as they could retain him as veteran insurance for a younger option.
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