BEREA (92.3 The Fan) – DeShone Kizer refuses to allow getting benched to defeat him wile Kevin Hogan is trying to take it 1 week at a time.
Both reacted Wednesday to the news of the first starting quarterback change of the season.
“I’m excited,” Hogan said. “It is another opportunity to go out there and play some ball, which I love. I played a lot of games in college, and when I was out there the other day, it felt like I was in college again. I’m looking forward to the opportunity. I’m going to prepare my butt off this week for the guys around me and make sure they have confidence in me and trust me to lead them so that I’m feeling good going into Sunday.”
Hogan was fourth on the depth chart in training camp before being named the week-to-week backup. While many discounted Hogan throughout camp because of where he was getting his reps, he never looked at it that way.
“You might not believe me, but it is something that I never really think about,” Hogan said. “I have always just tried to worry about what I can control. If there is a reason that I’m not getting certain reps, that means that I have to do really well with the reps that I’m getting and earn more reps.”
Head coach Hue Jackson hopes that switching to Hogan, who has led 5 scoring drives that have resulted in 31 points in 10 offensive possessions, will provide the offense with a needed spark.
“I just think it was the best chance to give our offense a chance to stay in rhythm and play consistently over four quarters,” Jackson said. “See if Kevin can do it. Obviously, he has done that in games. We have moved the ball. We have done some good things there. I just want to see if I can see him do that for a whole game. See where it goes.”
As for Kizer, he’s determined to regain the starting job.
“I don’t play this game to sit on the bench,” Kizer said. “So now it’s about accepting this as a challenge and doing whatever I can to get back out there and once again be the best quarterback and the best version of myself I can be when I do get back out there.”
While Kizer has had to deal with a lack of prolific weapons in the receiving corps, he’s equally to blame for the turnovers in the red zone as well as lack of timing and pocket presence.
“Nothing makes this easier,” Kizer said. “I’m a competitor. I want to be out there playing. When I came out here and got drafted here, my ultimate goal was to be the starting quarterback for every opportunity that I could and I came a little short of that this week and I’m going to do whatever I can to get right back on the path that I was on.”
Second Guesser’s Dream – With Deshaun Watson lighting it up in Houston and DeShone Kizer now holding a clipboard, Sunday’s game in Houston is instantly a second-guessers dream and Jackson could care less.
“I totally get it,” Jackson said. “What did I tell you guys earlier in the week? You guys can say whatever you like. I get it. I get the second guessing, the questions and all of that. You are entitled to do all of that. DeShone Kizer is on our team. Deshaun Watson is on their team. We can’t all of a sudden flip them so why are we having this discussion? I’m being very honest about that.”
The reason is simple: the Browns could’ve drafted Watson 12th but instead traded the pick to the Texans for their 2018 first-round selection and Houston immediately turned the card in for the Clemson QB.
In 4 starts Watson has completed 62.1 percent of his passes for 1,072 yards with 12 touchdowns, 4 interceptions and a rating of 100.7 while Kizer has completed just 50.9 percent of his passes for 851 yards with 3 touchdowns, a league-high 9 interceptions and a 49.5 rating.
Talking Out Of Both Sides – Jackson continues to master the art of contradicting himself in press conferences and he did it again Wednesday when asked if the decision to start Hogan was a week-to-week thing or permanent.
“No, I am not going to say I am week-to-week mode,” Jackson said. “Let’s see where we are. Kevin is this week. Next week is another game. We will go from there.”
Injury Report – DNP: LB James Burgess (knee), CB Jamar Taylor (ribs), C JC Tretter (knee), LT Joe Thomas (knee/rest); LIMITED: DE Myles Garrett (ankle), B.J. Bello (neck), WR Kenny Britt (knee/groin), DL Jamie Meder (toe); FULL: WR Sammie Coates (hamstring), LB Jamie COllins (concussion), DT Danny Shelton (calf), TE Randall Telfer (knee), RG Kevin Zeitler (thumb)