Browns QB says he's "100 percent"

Tim Couch is determined to regain his job as the Browns' starting quarterback. When practice resumes Wednesday, he says he will be under center with the first team. He has not played since tearing scar tissue in his right elbow on a throw in Green Bay Aug. 26.

Couch was encouraged by the way practice ended last week and the way his arm felt the day after throwing long passes in pregame warm-ups before the Browns played the Bengals. It was so pain-free he didn't even have to ice it immediately afterward. He did not throw Monday or Tuesday, as planned.

"I'm 100 percent," Couch said. "The only way I won't play against Tennessee is if I go out and injure it again in practice. The doctors and everyone believes that. That's the way we're going to go with it."

Coach Butch Davis concurred, but stopped short of crowning Couch the starter until seeing him in practice.

"We'll find out Wednesday," Davis said. "The doctors have targeted this week as the week they think he has a chance to be the starter. He's taken no negative steps the last two weeks, so all indications are we're moving in that direction."

The Browns are 1-1 with Kelly Holcomb as the starting quarterback. He played both games at home against teams with suspect defenses -- the Chiefs and Bengals -- and has a quarterback rating of 111.0. If Couch does resume his starting job, he'll do so against the Titans in Tennessee then play the Steelers in Pittsburgh. By then the Steelers might have their pass defense figured out.

Davis is making sure there is no quarterback controversy, but he also is leaving himself an escape route if he wants to stick with Holcomb.

"When Tim is 100 percent, he's the starting quarterback," Davis said.

Davis, not Couch, casts the final vote on when Couch is 100 percent.


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