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Turner has seen better QBs throw worse interceptions than Weeden

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com

Weeden remains the starter, though for how long is another question. (USATSI)
These words actually left our mouth the other day: "The Browns' season went down with Brian Hoyer."

We weren't kidding, either. After leading Cleveland to two straight wins, Hoyer suffered a torn ACL against the Bills in Week 5, paving the way for the return of Brandon Weeden, the team's 2012 first-round pick who has been, to put it kindly, underwhelming.

In last Sunday's 31-17 loss to the Lions, Weeden completed 26 of 43 passes for 292 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions, one of which we described in this week's Coach Killer's column as the worst pick you'll ever see. We weren't kidding about that, either.

Afterwards, Weeden seemed as perplexed by the play as the rest of us.

“It was a boneheaded play,” he admitted. “It all happened so fast. Trying to make a play. You want to be smart and don't take a sack. I just have to fall on it. Take a sack and move on.”

Good news, though: Browns offensive coordinator Norv Turner has witnessed much more accomplished quarterbacks do much worse.

Turner didn't name names "but there are some guys that have been to numerous Pro Bowls and guys that have won Super Bowls, I've seen not only attempt that pass but have it intercepted for a touchdown," he said, via the Cleveland Plain Dealer. "It's not excusable for anyone and it doesn't make it right that someone else has done it. But we're gonna eliminate it.''

And that's the rub: It's one thing to point out that Weeden isn't the first quarterback to have a bad interception, but the difference between him and, say, Brett Favre (just a shot in the dark here about one player Turner may have been referring to) is that Favre had upside.

With Weeden, it's the occasional glimpse of positivity sandwiched between a lot of forgettable football.

But Turner says Weeden's mistakes are "correctable," although he didn't offer a timeframe on the turnaround.

In four games this season, Weeden is completing 56.2 percent of his passes with four touchdowns versus five interceptions. He also ranks as the NFL's second-worst quarterback, according to FootballOutsiders.com, ahead of only Blaine Gabbert. As a rookie, Weeden was sixth-worst, managing to out-perform the likes of John Skelton (out of the league), Matt Cassel (third-team QB with the Vikings), Brady Quinn (third-team QB with the Jets), Ryan Lindley (third-team QB with the Cardinals), and Mark Sanchez (backup with the Jets, currently on IR).

It's a near certainty that the Browns will be in search of their next franchise quarterback this offseason, but for now, it appears the plan is to stick with Weeden.

"That temptation [to turn to backup Jason Campbell] isn't there for me," Turner said while conceding that ultimately, it's not his call. "I don't think anyone at halftime would have said “God, let's see how Jason can do in the second half.''

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