Browns, Headlines

Hue Jackson praises DeShone Kizer’s skill set

Expectations are a funny thing. Just days after Cleveland Browns head honcho Sashi Brown stated he wanted to pump the breaks with second-round quarterback DeShone Kizer, head coach Hue Jackson fired up the Expectations Engine with praise over the rookie quarterback’s skill set and a slight mention of another big, athletic quarterback in the AFC North in Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger.

On air with Cleveland Browns Daily, Jackson said the following (transcribed by’s Mary Kay Cabot) about his brand new, 6-foot-4, 233-pound quarterback:

“I don’t know that I’ve coached a guy with this kind of skill set. But he’s a big powerful man, so I know he’s going to get compared to another guy on another team in our division.

“I’m not going to talk about [Roethlisberger] because he’s that big and he has that kind of arm. He’s very mobile. So again, I don’t like to compare players and I know people will, but he’s got to come in and do what he can do and be the best version of him and that’s what we’re going to allow him to do.”

As much as fans have focused on the height of Browns wide receivers over the last several years, to put Kizer’s size in perspective, the last time the Browns selected a quarterback taller than 6-2, he was a 27-year-old Brandon Weeden. In 2014, with an average height of 6-foot-1, the collection of Johnny Manziel, Brian Hoyer, Connor Shaw and Tyler Thigpen were tied for the NFL’s smallest. That same season, 42 percent of quarterbacks on NFL rosters were 6-foot-4 or taller.

Things have changed for the Browns in recent months, however, as the 6-foot-2-inch Robert Griffin III has been replaced by the 6-foot-7-inch Brock Osweiler. Jackson has worked with the 6-foot-6-inch, 245-pound Joe Flacco and the 6-foot-2-inch, 220-pound Andy Dalton, but neither bring the same mobility as Kizer. Much is made about stature and arm strength in the AFC North where conditions tend to favor larger, stronger quarterbacks, and Jackson was quick to categorize Kizer as such.

“He’s a big man. He has the AFC North stature that I love. He has a big arm. He’s very intelligent. He’s played in a real big-time football program. He understands the demands of playing the position. He understands the demands of being a quarterback and the face of a franchise.”

When you factor in Brown’s comments of being slow with Kizer and rumors of the team looking to move Osweiler, smart money would say odds are still favoring Cody Kessler as the team’s Week 1 quarterback. While this may not excite too many fans, the team feels that these three quarterbacks put the team in a much better position than they were in at this point last season. They will have the chance to confirm or dispel these feelings starting next week when the rookies take to the field in Berea.

  • scripty

    He basically just called out Andy Dalton.

  • RGB

    PFF rates his clipboard holding coefficient as exceptional.

  • Saggy

    2 things I like more today than yesterday:

    1. Kizer
    2. Kessler as the starter

  • Skulb

    Last year the earth moved in a practice session and this year Hue has found himself a big, strong man. At last, some might add. It’s just not safe to go out at night in Cleveland anymore! Meanwhile it is becoming harder and harder to judge anything off of what Jackson is saying. Personally, I find it hard not to be skeptical.

  • Harv

    yeah, between making/denying comparisons to HOFers, to opening his yap to Michael Silver, to general earth-moving hyperbole, Hue sure likes to talk. Hasn’t been a head coach long enough to see the wisdom in filtering a little.

  • Skulb

    Or lowering expectations to protect his guys from over-scrutiny in the early goings. Then again, maybe he’s right this time. It’s always possible.

  • mgbode

    Or he’s old enough that he doesn’t care about bothering to filter himself

  • jpftribe

    No where to go but up, for sure.

  • jpftribe

    What’s he gonna say? The kid left ND a mess and we hope we can clean him up?

  • jpftribe

    I’d still take him, by miles, over any other AFCN HC.

  • Skulb

    My opinion is that there is no reason to mention how big and strong he is unless someone asks. And certainly not while comparing him to winners of multiple Superbowls when he has even taken a snap in training camp yet.

  • Harv

    agree. The best thing Hue can do for the kid, and for himself, is say to somethng like, “He has good size and we think he has some talent. Now it will up to him to learn the system and compete, and then we’ll see happens.” When a coach shares these fantasies he makes everyone complicit if it doesn’t work out: the GM for the selection, the player for not reaching potential and himself, for the unsuccessful development and clueless evaluation. There’s no reason for this other than Hue likes being quotable.

  • Jaker

    This doesn’t change anything, we know he has the tools to be a Franchise QB. We just need to make sure we do it right to give him the best chance to succeed here. Talk doesn’t mean anything until we get to work.

    When preparing your Franchise QB, you must be sure to let the young tender QB marinate with the QB-friendly HC for ample time. No 2 Qb’s are the same, so there’s no set rule for how long you let it sit and marinate. Be sure to just keep an eye on it and not take out of the oven until it’s firm and ready. Then, once it’s ready, be sure to serve it with a strong offensive line and seasoned with talented playmaking receivers to get the most out of your Franchise QB.

    Forgive me, I’m on a cleanse.