As the team's OTAs opened today, once again, the organization's words and actions have created a picture of a somewhat disingenuous "may the best man win" approach to deciding the starter at the most important position on the team.
Last night, at the Akron Browns Backers banquet, general manager Tom Heckert hit many of the same notes he hit two weeks when speaking about the 2012 outlook at quarterback (via Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon-Journal):
The best guy’s gonna play, but we fully expect Brandon to be that guy. Now if he’s not, and Colt plays better or Seneca, whoever—but right now that’s our goal is to have [Weeden] be the guy.
Got that? The best quarterback is going to play, but they expect Weeden to be the best, and their goal is for Weeden to be the best.
You would have to be sympathetic to Colt McCoy and Seneca Wallace if they felt the deck was stacked against them.
In defense of Heckert, he did praise Weeden's accuracy, arm strength, leadership and intelligence in the same talk. If he's being honest, it's understandable that he would want a quarterback with those qualities to start.
Still, the appearance of a true open competition is important, so as Ulrich and others tweeted this morning, McCoy took the first snaps with the first-team offense, and McCoy went first again when the team went to 11-on-11's.
Reading reports from the OTAs like the one from CBS Sports' Marty Gitlin that called McCoy's passes wobbly and Weeden's passes "crisp, tight spirals" alongside Heckert's comments makes it clear that McCoy should enjoy the first-team snaps while they last, because they won't last long.
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