Poor Kevin Hogan. The guy was the only quarterback to not throw an incomplete pass during Friday’s scrimmage at FirstEnergy Stadium (see the full play-by-play recap here), and yet he was the only quarterback not interviewed afterwards. But that’s because we know the decision will ultimately come down to one of three guys:
- Cody Kessler
- Brock Osweiler
- DeShone Kizer
Here are how all of the quarterbacks fared statistically, per Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal:
Scrimmage totals: Kessler 4-6, 33 yds, 2 sacks, Kizer 7-14, 46, Osweiler 10-16, 94, 1 sack, 2 FG drives, Hogan 5-5, 71, 3 sacks, 1 FG drive— Nate Ulrich (@NateUlrichABJ) August 5, 2017
The big letdown was that out of 12 drives, the offenses managed zero touchdowns. After the scrimmage, head coach Hue Jackson said that Osweiler and Hogan both did some good things for the White Team, while Kessler and Kizer could’ve done some things better for the Brown Team. Given the limited format, though, he’s not making his entire decision based on one game, but the scrimmage does serve as a bookend of sorts, to the point where a quarterback depth chart change could be coming:
“Absolutely, I will [look into potentially making a change]. I have to. We have a game next Thursday. I will definitely look at it. As I said to all of you the other day, it doesn’t mean whichever road we decide to travel for next Thursday that doesn’t mean that is the starter for the season. That might be for a game until we see more. We might need to see more as I said a while back. All of this is good information for me, good data for me, good data for our staff and good data for our executive team to really look at every possibility we have as we move forward.”
Jackson admitted that he probably wouldn’t make a change for Saturday’s practice, if he does make one. The team is off Sunday, so if a change is made, it’ll be known on Monday. Whoever that guy is, though, do they officially become the guy to beat in the competition?
“I know you guys want to use that headline (laughter). You can look at it like that… Until I really make that decision, can I really honestly answer that question and say that I know without question that this is the guy to beat, he would have to go and stink it up, and if he did, he wouldn’t be the quarterback? I think this thing is still really fluid in my mind. There are four good candidates. We have a lot of work to do, but at the same time, I think there are some guys that will rise to the occasion with more work and more opportunity.”
On the final drive of the scrimmage, Kizer missed a couple of touchdown passes, including one to RB Duke Johnson. His final, do-or-die play on fourth down, was thrown across his body to the middle of the field after he had rolled out. Jackson talked about
“Yes, he missed that one [to Johnson]. He would be the first to tell you that. That is a ball that he normally makes. To me, that is his first time in this stadium making that throw in that end zone. You have to be here. I would be surprised if a lot of our quarterbacks don’t show back up here later on tonight just to go back through that. That is what the good ones do. They find out, this is your home, this is where you play, and the elements are a little different than the practice field. We were in a closed environment now. It is different when you see things, but we have to make those plays, and we will as we move forward. ...
You can’t throw the ball across your body in the end zone with people there. Those are things that happen. That is a learning and teaching moment for him, and that is something he will grow from. He gets it. As I said, you are right. Those are the things that young players, I think we all know, revert back to. That is what we have to get out of him in those situations.”
Here are some notes from what Kizer, Kessler, and Osweiler said after the scrimmage:
On if he would like to have another attempt on the incompletion intended for RB Duke Johnson Jr. across the middle on the final drive: “Oh my gosh, yeah. Duke is a heck of route runner. Obviously, he is very versatile. For him to be that wide open and for me to miss is unacceptable. I will go back and obviously, check out the footwork on that play, check out the read, where my eyes are and make sure that we can make the correction going into tomorrow to continue to get better as much as we can.”
On his performance tonight: “I have played better. This is a unique opportunity to go against the guys in the situation that we are in. When you are going against the twos in front of a crowd and you are getting information coming in, for me to step out there and not play at the level that I would like to play at is a little disappointing for myself, but once again, it is another learning opportunity. We are going to take this into tomorrow and continue to get better throughout training camp.”
On his performance tonight: “It was really vanilla with what we were doing and stuff. It was good to get out there and get on the field and get some game-type reps in our stadium, in front of our fans, which was really nice. Obviously, we want to get a little bit more of a flow on some of them and get some of the drives going, but the defense played well. The White Team defense did a great job. They flew around and did a good job up front getting to me and also did a good job in the back in covering.”
On if it is hard to get into a rhythm with different players subbing in and out: “At the same time, you just have to attack each play. Each play you get, don’t turn the ball over, be smart. Getting a lot of cover two from our defense. Obviously not doing a whole lot of crazy stuff, so just be smart with the football. Show you can protect the football and also try to continue and extend drives and things. It was good to get out there and kind of get into a little bit of a flow, going every other series, when you are in there with those plays that you get, you have to try to make the most of them.”
On if he has been given a fair shot to win the starting QB position: “Absolutely, I think Coach (Jackson) has done a tremendous job of giving us all opportunities throughout the course of the spring and fall. There are a lot of things that take place behind closed doors that you guys don’t get to see. He is quizzing us every single day on our playbook. He is quizzing us on our reads. He is quizzing us on our defensive knowledge. Coach Jackson is one of the best, if not the best, football coach I have ever been around. I really can’t say enough great things about him. He is a very smart coach and he knows what he is doing. My job and the rest of the guys’ job is to just trust the process. Trust the process and trust Coach, and I certainly do.”
On what he did best: “When I was on the field tonight, I felt like we were really close to getting into a really good rhythm. I think we moved the ball fairly well, but we can certainly be a lot better. I missed a throw here, a throw there. I audibled on a third-and-two. Our defense was playing man-to-man coverage, and I audibled to a shot down the field. We were close to hitting it. That is one of those I’ll get together with coach tomorrow and we will discuss. Maybe that is not the time to take a shot. Maybe he likes it. That is a conversation we have to have, but for the most part, I think we were really close into getting into a rhythm offensively. We did some good things. We moved the chains. There were a lot of guys who stepped up on that white team and made big plays. (TE) J.P. (Holtz), one of our tight ends, came up big tonight. (WR) Jordan Leslie had a huge night. The offensive line played great. The backs ran hard. Really, I am just super proud of that white team. They came out here and played really hard tonight.”
We’ve had plenty of polls about the quarterbacks, Browns fans, but let’s focus just on this one scrimmage. Who were you most impressed by?
Which QB was most impressive at the Browns’ scrimmage?
This poll is closed