2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Weeden is the Browns' starting quarterback

By TOM WITHERS - AP Sports Writer
    2013-08-20 21:31

BEREA, Ohio (AP) - Brandon Weeden had a lot to prove.

Before his second NFL season began, he had to convince some teammates, a new coaching staff and front office and many skeptical Cleveland fans he deserved to start.

He desperately wanted to be their quarterback, the guy.

On Tuesday, Weeden's efforts were rewarded.

Browns coach Rob Chudzinski selected Weeden as his starter, an announcement that erased any uncertainty - and there wasn't much - that the second-year QB would be behind center for the Sept. 8 season opener against Miami.

Weeden has spent the past few months doing everything he possibly could to win the job, and he did - fair and square.

``Brandon has earned this,'' Chudzinski said, ``and that's extremely important to me that he did. He has gained my complete trust. He has gained his teammates' complete trust and this organization's trust. We're all behind him and we'll all be behind him to support him.''

Weeden, who survived a bumpy rookie season, took the news that he had beaten out veteran Jason Campbell in typical stride.

Unlike a year ago, when he was essentially anointed as Cleveland's No. 1 from the moment he was selected in the first round of the draft, Weeden had to fight for this.

He immersed himself in the playbook to learn the Browns' new system and performed at a high level during spring practices and summer training camp.

If there was any doubt, Weeden removed by completing 18 of 25 passes for 229 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions in two preseason games.

Case closed.

``I've taken the steps that I needed to take to better myself,'' Weeden said. ``But I have to keep continuing to work, keep continuing to do the things that I've done all along up until this point to become that player that I want to be. I'm not satisfied. I feel like I have a lot of work to do, and that's kind of my mindset moving forward.''

While there was widespread speculation outside of Cleveland's locker room about whether Weeden should remain the starter, the Browns were certain he was up to the challenge.

``I can't really say I had any doubt,'' wide receiver Josh Gordon said. ``It seems as though he's the guy who's been here. He's shown improvement ever since he got here, every day, every week, his commitment and work ethic. He's definitely stepped up into that leadership role that everybody expects him to be. He's doing a great job and we're glad to have him.

``I've got 100 percent faith in him.''

Chudzinski does as well.

The 29-year-old Weeden has impressed his coach with every aspect of his game - on and off the field.

``I have been very pleased with how he has gone out,'' Chudzinski said. ``He has taken the opportunity, seized the opportunity and produced. So I have been pleased from that standpoint and I think that he has garnered a lot of respect from, not only me, not only the coaching staff and the organization but from his teammates, as well.''

Weeden is just the fourth Browns quarterback - and first since Charlie Frye in 2007 - to open consecutive seasons as the starter. Tim Couch (2000-01) and Kelly Holcomb (02-03) are the others.

``I knew I had to impress the people that ultimately make the decisions,'' Weeden said. ``That's all 90 of us that are out here. My mindset didn't change. My mindset was getting better focus, just doing the things that I need to do to become a better player.''

Weeden now believes everyone within the Browns' organization has his back.

``I do. Absolutely,'' he said. ``I feel like I have the support from players on up.''

While others wondered if he would succeed, Weeden said self-doubt was never a factor.

``I've always put the pressure on myself that I was going to be the guy,'' he said. ``I was going to do everything I could to be the guy. I can't say that I ever doubted it. My mentality was that I was again going to take the bull by the horns and be the guy and do everything in my power to make it where they had no choice but to name me the guy.''

He's the guy.

NOTES: Chudzinski said RB Dion Lewis will likely be placed on season-ending injured reserve with a broken leg. Lewis had surgery on Monday to repair the fibula he broke during Thursday night's win over Detroit. ... As expected, LB Barkevious Mingo will sit out Saturday's game at Indianapolis with a bruised lung. Chudzinski said Mingo 's medical evaluation ``is an ongoing thing.'' Mingo was spitting up blood on the sideline Thursday night with the unusual injury. The Browns still aren't sure when he was injured.

---

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Mike PounceyJul 23 12:33p

Miami Dolphins C Mike Pouncey (hip) could miss the first eight weeks of the season because of the hip surgery he had this offseason, according to a source. He [ More ]

Evan RodriguezJul 23 12:23p

Buffalo Bills FB Evan Rodriguez (cramps) and TE Chris Gragg (cramps) were hospitalized because of complications from cramps and were getting hydrated, according to head coach Doug Marrone. Rodriguez [ More ]

Dustin HopkinsJul 23 12:20p

Buffalo Bills PK Dustin Hopkins will have to try to make the roster as a kickoff specialist, according to head coach Doug Marrone.

Vernon DavisJul 23 12:13p

San Francisco 49ers TE Vernon Davis has reported to camp Wednesday, July 23, according to an Instagram post from 49ers S C.J. Spillman.

Jason BabinJul 23 12:03p

New York Jets signed DE Jason Babin (Jaguars) to a two-year contract, with the second year being a team option. He's expected to serve as a situational pass rusher.

Reggie WayneJul 23 11:13a

Indianapolis Colts WR Reggie Wayne (knee) said he has been medically cleared to practice. He's expected to be limited, though, especially in the near future.

Kraig UrbikJul 23 10:53a

Buffalo Bills OG Chris Hairston continued to receive first-team repetitions at right guard in the red zone drills Wednesday, July 23. OG Kraig Urbik struggled with first-team the previous day.

Jamaal CharlesJul 23 09:53a

Updating previous reports, Kansas City Chiefs RB Jamaal Charles will not report to training camp Wednesday, July 23, barring a major contract breakthrough.

Vick BallardJul 23 09:33a

Indianapolis Colts RB Vick Ballard (knee) reported to camp and has passed his physical.

Rob GronkowskiJul 23 08:53a

New England Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski (knee) has been cleared for contact and will not be placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list, according to head coach Bill Belichick.

Evan RodriguezJul 23 08:43a

Buffalo Bills TE Chris Gragg (cramps), FB Evan Rodriguez (cramps) and CB Brandon E. Smith (leg) were out of practice Wednesday, July 23. OT Seantrel Henderson (hip) returned to action.

Rashad JenningsJul 23 08:23a

New York Giants RBs Rashad Jennings, David Wilson and Andre Williams could be used in a three-man rotation this season to keep Jennings fresh.

Caleb McSurdyJul 23 02:53a

The St. Louis Rams waived four players Tuesday, July 22, as they cut loose OL Abasi Salimu, WR Diontae Spencer, LB Caleb McSurdy, and LB Tavarius Wilson.

Carl NicksJul 23 02:43a

Tampa Bay Buccaneers RB Bobby Rainey, G Carl Nicks and DE Da'Quan Bowers may be fighting for roster spots once training camp begins due to other competition for their [ More ]

Chris CulliverJul 23 01:13a

San Francisco 49ers CB Chris Culliver (knee) has been cleared to take part in practice when training camp opens this week. He suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament to [ More ]

Ben TateJul 23 01:13a

Cleveland Browns RBs Ben Tate and Terrance West will compete for the starting tailback job during training camp and the preseason, and it's a battle head coach Mike Pettine [ More ]

Joel BitonioJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns OG Joel Bitonio (ankle) lined up with the first-team offense during organized team activities (OTAs), and he held the spot until he suffered a sprained ankle June [ More ]

Paul McQuistanJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns OLs Garrett Gilkey, Paul McQuistan and Jason Pinkston are fighting for position in the pecking order at right guard, and one of them might even push OG [ More ]

Craig RobertsonJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns LBs Christian Kirksey and Craig Robertson will compete for an inside linebacker job during training camp, according to head coach Mike Pettine.

Joe HadenJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns CBs Justin Gilbert and Buster Skrine will compete for the starting cornerback job opposite CB Joe Haden in training camp. 'We weren't going to hand Justin that [ More ]

Gary BarnidgeJul 23 01:03a

Cleveland Browns TEs Gary Barnidge and Jim Dray will battle for the No. 2 tight end spot during training camp and the preseason.

Eli ManningJul 23 12:23a

New York Giants QB Eli Manning (ankle) has shown no ill effects during camp from ankle surgery that sidelined him for earlier offseason activities.

Tom CoughlinJul 22 11:53p

New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin was not happy that several players were forced to leave practice with dehydration issues Tuesday, July 22. 'It pisses me off,' Coughlin [ More ]

Brandon LloydJul 22 11:23p

San Francisco 49ers WR Stevie Johnson is the frontrunner for the No. 3 WR job, according to Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com, but he added that neither Johnson nor WR [ More ]

Darren SprolesJul 22 11:13p

Philadelphia Eagles RB Darren Sproles' ability to win one-on-one matchups in space is what head coach Chip Kelly plans to exploit this season. Kelly said opposing defenses played a [ More ]

Thaddeus LewisJul 22 11:03p

Buffalo Bills QB Thaddeus Lewis and WR Tori Gurley had miscommunications on three occasions Tuesday, July 22, resulting in two incomplete passes and an interception. Joe Buscaglia of WGR [ More ]

Thaddeus LewisJul 22 10:53p

Buffalo Bills QB Thaddeus Lewis and QB Jeff Tuel are in an open competition for the backup quarterback job, head coach Doug Marrone said Tuesday, July 22.

Brian MoormanJul 22 10:43p

Buffalo Bills P Brian Moorman was more effective than P Jake Dombrowski on punts in terms of both average hang time and average distance Tuesday, July 22.

Titus YoungJul 22 09:53p

Updating a previous story, free-agent WR Titus Young (Lions) was charged with felony battery with serious bodily injury from an alleged July 8 incident inside a Los Angeles-area hospital. [ More ]

Ryan MathewsJul 22 09:43p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews' rookie contract will expire after the 2014 season, which means this could be his final year with the organization, in the opinion of [ More ]

Mario WilliamsJul 22 09:43p

Buffalo Bills DE Mario Williams, DT Marcell Dareus and DT Kyle D. Williams were all rotated out of the lineup at times during team drills Tuesday, July 22. LB [ More ]

Nigel BradhamJul 22 09:23p

Buffalo Bills LB Nigel Bradham was one of eight players to record sacks during team drills Tuesday, July 22. The team's pass rush has been consistent since camp began, [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group