Quinn Is Making A Case For Himself

If anyone is answering as many quarterback questions from the media as Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis, it's his good friend Romeo Crennel. For every time Weis is asked about freshman Jimmy Clausen, the Cleveland Browns' head coach is asked about rookie first round draft pick Brady Quinn.

While the Notre Dame media is broad when asking about the starting quarterback position, Crennel is directly getting asked where Quinn fits into the starting quarterback position, with veterans Charlie Frye and Derek Anderson being less than impressive through the Browns first two preseason games.

Crennel was hoping that either Frye or Anderson would win the job, and they could bring Quinn along slowly. Even more so because Quinn missed the first 11 days and 16 practices of training camp because of contract negotiations. But Frye and Anderson haven't produced, and everyone is wondering where Quinn is at in the process.

"Right now they had two guys they wanted to claim the starting position, and both guys down the depth chart are looking pretty good," Barry McBride, the publisher of The Orange and Brown Report explained, also referring to Ken Dorsey. "Now the Browns depth chart at quarterback is in chaos. What Crennel does is sort of a mystery at this point. You have four different guys who have some sort of legitimate argument they should get a shot. But all of them at this point has something wrong with them."

Nothing looked wrong with Quinn last Saturday when he took the field for the first time in the Browns second preseason game. Trailing the Detroit Lions 23-7 when Quinn entered the game with 9:20 to go, the former Notre Dame star led his team on two straight scoring drives capped by touchdown passes. The Browns lost 23-20, but the good news was, Quinn was 13-of-20 passing for 155 yards and the two scores.

Granted Quinn's production came in mop-up time, Quinn was impressive nonetheless.

"Quinn does a couple things a lot better than the other quarterbacks," McBride said. "He sets up a lot quicker. He seems to go through his progressions a lot better. That's what we saw Saturday night. The thing is, he had that 12-day holdout, so he is not as comfortable with the offense as they'd like him to be. But the fundamentals of what he is doing was significantly better than the three-year veterans on the depth chart."

While Crennel was his usual understated self after the game according to McBride, he said that everyone else was very impressed with Quinn. With two more preseason games on the slate, expect to see Quinn and Dorsey get a lot of snaps with the first-team offense.

The last time the Browns went with a franchise quarterback in the first round, Tim Couch, the top selection overall in 1999 sat behind Ty Detmer for one game before being anointed the starter. With the way the other quarterbacks have performed, Quinn may not have to wait that long. While Couch and bust go hand in hand, McBride doesn't see things going the same way for Quinn.

"We saw Tim Couch come in as the top draft choice, and Quinn comes in further ahead of him in practice," McBride stated.

***While Quinn has quickly impressed in Cleveland, former Irish teammate and second round draft choice Victor Abiamiri has been getting noticed in Philadelphia Eagles camp.

"He looked real good in camp," Chuck Hixon, the former publisher of The Warnest.com stated. Hixon left his post last Friday to focus all his time on Scout.com's Philadelphia Phillies site. "They're giving him a good amount of reps. He seems to be catching on pretty quickly. A lot of rookies have trouble catching on to (head coach) Andy Reid's system. He seems to be picking it up pretty well."

In Abiamiri's first preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens, the defensive end came up with four tackles and one assist. Then against the Carolina Panthers, Abiamiri registered two tackles including a sack.

"I think he is a guy they're going to look at to get some decent playing time this year," Hixon said.

***Things haven't been going as well for Abiamiri's former defensive line mate, Derek Landri. The Jacksonville Jaguars defensive tackle hasn't played well in the first two preseason games, and is still looking for his first tackle. Once a guarantee to make the team, Charlie Bernstein of JagNation.com says that 6-foot-2, 282-pound Landri is now on the bubble.

"He looked real strong in practices," Bernstein said of the fifth-round draft choice. "He looked great in mini camps, but hasn't played all that well in the two preseason games. He played a little more in the Miami game and missed a few tackles. He seems to be real undersized, and seems to be getting pushed around a little bit.

"If you asked me a week and a half ago, I would've said he was a lock. Now I say 50-50. They just signed Seth Payne before Saturday's game. From what I understand, it was because Landri was not progressing as much as they like."

On the latest depth chart, Landri is listed fourth at his defensive tackle position behind John Henderson, Tony McDaniel and Payne. McDaniel recently went down with an injury, and the team doesn't know how serious of an injury it is. Bernstein said if it's serious, Landri will most likely make the team. He also said the Jaguars will give Landri a long look in their next preseason game, Aug. 23, at Green Bay.

"He is a real quick kid," Bernstein said. "He just seems to be a little undersized."

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