BEREA, Ohio — What is up with the high ankle sprain and Browns quarterbacks?
It's sounding more and more like the Browns will have gone full circle at quarterback come Sunday.
Jake Delhomme joined the Browns as the starting quarterback after signing a $7 million dollar deal as an unrestricted free agent. Delhomme started the first game of the season and suffered a high ankle sprain and was sidelined until Oct. 10 when he substituted for Seneca Wallace against the Falcons.
Even though he won't come out and say it, it looks like Mangini is going to go start Delhomme against his former team on Sunday.
"I'm confident in both guys, but Jake's familiarity with Carolina and with him practicing against them every day (for years) will help him," Mangini said. "His familiarity with Carolina is a plus."
Delhomme and Wallace were both practicing Wednesday, while Colt McCoy did not. Mangini didn't rule McCoy out, but he did infer that his injury was a type of a high ankle sprain.
"(The injury) is different from the ones Jake and Seneca have had, but it is a (high) ankle sprain."
McCoy finished Sunday's game and was in a walking boot after the game.
"(McCoy's) better than he was," Mangini said. "He's determined and he's very determined to be back practicing as soon as he can. He hasn't had an injury where he's missed practice before. We'll see where we are by the end of the week."
Mangini said his experience with ankle injuries this season tells him to be prepared for anything.
"With any of these injuries, I'm optimistic, but we've been through quite a few of these recently."
McCoy injured his left foot and Mangini said that helps as it's the opposite of his throwing arm.
"It helps being on the side of his non throwing shoulder."
Delhomme has been very impressed with McCoy's play.
"The young kid has played outstanding and he's earned the respect from everyone in here," he said. "He was obviously, hurting a good bit, and he stuck it out and led us down the field at the end."
Delhomme said he's ready to go, if Mangini goes back to him.
"The last couple of weeks I've had some pep in my step," Delhomme said. "It's very unfortunate the way things have played out.
"I'm a lot more ready than I was remotely close to the Atlanta game, so we'll leave it at that.
"You almost want to pinch yourself that this is a dream because all of the quarterbacks having ankle issues, but it's what we have to deal with."
Wallace was playing well when he was injured, but he says it's up to the coach as to who plays.
"It's the coach's decision, so I really can't say too much about it," Wallace said. "He's calling the shots and it's whatever he decides we go with."
Wallace, who didn't seem very happy in his session with the media, was asked about having three quarterbacks go down with ankle injuries.
"I don't know, we might be cursed."
If Delhomme starts, it will be against the team that dumped him after signing him to a big contract. He also led the Panthers to a Super Bowl.
"We'll see what happens, but it is ironic that we are playing the Panthers this week."
Delhomme said he doesn't view this week's game as a payback game for the Panthers cutting him.
"This isn't like when I left New Orleans in 2003 to play for Carolina," he said. "I couldn't wait for that game because I didn't get a chance with New Orleans.
"If you're any type of competitor you want to have that show them attitude," he said. "I had a good run with Carolina and sometimes, there are breakups and it needed to happen. It's not like when I played against New Orleans, the revenge factor, because it is a very different Carolina team."
O-Line Needs to Play Better: Mangini wasn't overly happy with the play of the offensive line last week. Rookie Shawn Lauvao made his first NFL start and Mangini said there's room for improvement.
"Lauvao needs to play better than he did Sunday," he said. "For a young guy getting the opportunity, he's a smart guy and I think he will play better. He has all the things we're looking for."
Mangini indicated that Floyd Womack, who has battling a knee injury all season, would be back at practice and will be working with Lauvao and John St. Clair on the right side of the line.
"We'll work all three of them and make sure that we don't add too many reps for Womack."
Injury Update: Those not practicing on Wednesday are Colt McCoy, Eric Barton, Mike Adams, Ben Watson, Scott Fujita, Shaun Rogers, Eric Wright and Josh Cribbs. Mangini said he hopes to get a majority of the players back by Thursday, but said he wasn't as optimistic about Wright or Fujita.
Cribbs, Steinbach Lead in Pro Bowl Votes: With four weeks left in the Pro Bowl voting, two Browns are currently leading at their respective position. Eric Steinbach leads at guard with 101,519 votes, while Joshua Cribbs is the leader at kick returner with 98,812. The Pro Bowl players will be announced on Dec. 28 on the NFL Network. Peyton Manning was the leading vote-getter thus far with 496,658 votes.
Costanzo to IR: Special teams ace, Blake Costanzo was placed on injured reserve with an injured groin suffered against the Jaguars. To replace him, the Browns signed linebacker Eric Alexander to take his roster spot.
Alexander is a six-year NFL player, who has been a career special team player. He was most recently with the Patriots and Jaguars.
Practice Moves: The Browns made two moves on their practice squad. They signed offensive lineman John Malecki and running back Quinn Porter and released offensive lineman Jeff Hansen and running back Martell Mallett.