Browns, Headlines

A confident Kizer says “When I step out, it is time to perform.”

DeShone Kizer has been the most talked about player in the Cleveland Browns Training Camp despite being a Round 2 pick and not ever having sat a top the quarterback depth chart. Veterans, coaches, and reporters have raved about the rookie’s work ethic. Staying on the field after practice, understanding the playbook much quicker than anticipated, and his feel for the game are ahead of where many expected him to be. With that said, he will be quarterback No. 3 in Thursday night’s preseason opener, behind starter Brock Osweiler and second-stringer Cody Kessler because he still has much work to do.

Many anticipated the rookie would get the starting nod after all three struggled in the Orange and Brown scrimmage last Friday night. But, Kizer remained confident Monday afternoon while speaking to the media. He not only trusts himself and his game, but he’s also confident in terms of the competition to be the starting quarterback in Week 1.

“The Orange and Brown Scrimmage was the same way,” the rookie said. “I was the second guy to step out on the Brown team. I think this is just another step in the process of me trying to get better. This whole training camp is about me developing and going out and performing when my number is called. When it comes to Thursday night, it has been said that I will be the third guy to step out there and when I step out, it is time to perform.”

As a rookie, Kizer knows that he has a lot more to prove than both Osweiler and Kessler. Although this is also Osweiler’s first year with head coach Hue Jackson, the veteran gets somewhat of an advantage just because he’s been in the league a little longer. Kizer is doing everything possible to not only improve his game, but to catch the eyes of the coaching staff as well. Now, it comes down to his performance on the field, no matter what group — first-, second-, or third-string — he is with. “I have no idea. Once again, it is my job to perform when he (Jackson) calls my number. If it is with ones, twos, threes, if it is a preseason rep, a training camp rep, a game rep, whenever my number is called, I am going to go play,” he said. “Everything that I have been doing up until now to try to develop and become the best quarterback I can. Whenever my number is called, I will go out there and perform the way I know how to.”

Kizer learned from his performance just by watching the film from last Friday night. “I see a lot of room for improvement, a lot of room to take my game to the next level. After watching that, it definitely plays right into where I think I am and that is a guy who is looking to learn as much as I possibly can, a guy who has some consistency things I need to clean up,” he stated. “There is still a lot of work for me to do before I become the quarterback that I want to become one day.”

Kizer knows that he still must improve all parts of his game, but he also realizes that accuracy must top that list. He has the arm strength to be a franchise quarterback, but he need the accuracy and fundamentals to go along with it. “That is always going to be No. 1. This game does not work at the quarterback position if you can’t put the ball on the receiver. The things that separate the guys from good to great are typically being able to make passes and complete passes when there is tough defenders on them. When they are in man-to-man situations, when it is mono y mono, it is up to the quarterback to make sure he puts the ball where it needs to be.”

In order to earn the starting nod in Week 1, September 10 against the Steelers, Kizer needs to continue to demonstrate the work ethic of a veteran both on the field and in the film room, while upping his performance on the field. If he can, Jackson will have no choice but to start the rookie in the regular season opener. Do you dare bet against him?

  • Natedawg86

    The only way Kizer should start game 1 against the Steelers is if Kessler and Osweiler were hurt.

  • CBiscuit
  • mgbode
  • mgbode

    Disagree

  • MartyDaVille

    What if . . . what if someone were to put butter on that roll, and what if all the people in New York City thought that it was a great and wonderful thing that only they knew about and . . . nah, that’s crazy talk.

  • Garry_Owen
  • mgbode

    I kid you not that in the original NYT article comments someone w/ no intent at sarcasm (as far as I could tell) claims that the kaiser rolls is also a tri-state area phenomenon.

  • Pat Leonard

    Agree to disagree. I think there’s a scenario where Kizer is the best chance we have to win football games now AND build for the future.

  • RGB
  • JM85

    After going to a practice I feel that Kessler should be 3rd. But I understand why he is the backup.

  • Natedawg86

    I don’t want to see him get ruined by rushing him out too early. I guess that is my point here.

  • Natedawg86

    Everywhere that I have seen states that he needs some time to work on some things and make some changes. Need to set him up for success. I can see a scenario where he could come in a few games into the season, but does it make a huge difference if he starts say 10 games as opposed to 16 his rookie year?

  • Pat Leonard

    He seems to be picking up the offense quickly and I think there’s good potential for a Dak Prescott scenario behind this great offensive line. Behind last year’s line, I agree, I wouldn’t throw him out there to get mauled by the wolves. But he already does some things that Kessler, Osweiler, and many other quarterbacks don’t instinctively do. He climbs the pocket rather than freaking out when the tackles are pressured around the edge. He’s got nice footwork (for a rookie). If he’s the one guy on the roster who can move the offense, then he’s the one I want playing. Now, I admit that might not be the case. He might not be accurate enough or he might not make decisions quickly enough, and if that’s the case then I’m okay with waiting. But behind this line, I just want the best QB to start, period.

  • Natedawg86
  • mgbode

    Flacco, Wilson, Bridgewater, Carr, Prescott… et cetera

    I don’t think that is a thing unless you have an expansion Browns or Texans type of OL to worry about.

  • Pat Leonard

    Or possibly the 2017 Seahawks. That offensive line… WOOF. Now watch them tape a bunch of cats together and give up 15 sacks this season.

  • mgbode

    Seahawks & Vikings could have had playoff teams except they didn’t want to upgrade their OL for whatever reason. Or they will be anyway (I think it’ll haunt them).

  • mgbode

    Yes, it is fair and Hue has consistently said he isn’t giving him the whole playbook and he still needs to work, which is a big reason Kizer should NOT be the preseason Week 1 starting QB.

  • Pat Leonard

    If the universe is fair, it will.

  • mgbode

    Well, shoot.

  • jpftribe

    Freeman, Young, Leinhart, Tebow, Ponder, Russell, Quinn, Locker, Leaf, Manziel, Weeden, Manuel, Sanchez…..

    I can go on if you’d like.

  • jpftribe

    There’s a fortune waiting to be had, I tell ya……

  • mgbode

    Many of those QBs did not play right away and please indicate among the other ones who you think would have been franchise guys if only they could have sat and learned first.