BEREA, Ohio - After his team beat the Giants, 10-6, on Monday, Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson said he would name his starting quarterback for the regular season on Wednesday, and nothing he saw on tape from the game caused him to accelerate the process.
Rookie DeShone Kizer and sixth-year veteran Brock Osweiler have been battling for the starting job since training camp opened on July 27. A decision will definitely decide the winner, because neither quarterback has won by knockout.
"No, we haven't been dancing around," Jackson said. "Today is Tuesday. We said that we would have that great conversation tomorrow.
"I think I feel pretty good about where I am. I've been feeling pretty good about what I feel and what I think for a little while now, but you have to let things, as I've always said, play out. Today, I wanted to finish the things I wanted to watch, have the conversations I wanted to have with others and just kind of move from there."
Sifting through Jackson's words for clues about what he is thinking is futile. With one sentence, he sounds like he's leaning toward Osweiler and with the next he sounds like he's leaning toward starting Kizer when the season opens with a home game against the Steelers on Sept. 10.
"Obviously, (Kizer) is a young man who is very talented," Jackson said. "He knows how to play the game and he has a great feel for the game, and those things will serve him well as he gets older. What we try to do here is create the right environment for him to learn a process that's going to help him be the best quarterback that he can be.
"I think (Osweiler) has represented himself well. He's done some good things and worked hard and done a great job in this building. There's no question he's in the discussion here, but at the same time, I think all of these guys have had ample opportunities to showcase their talent and ability and what they bring to the table."
Osweiler started in the preseason opener against the Saints on Aug. 10 and failed to lead the Browns to any points in four series. He started against the Giants and played two series. The Browns made one first down and scored zero points with him at quarterback. He played two series against the Giants without lighting up the scoreboard once.
Kizer played the second half against the Saints and led the Browns to two touchdowns. He threw the winning touchdown pass of 45 yards to Jordan Payton with 1:58 to play.
Kizer played four series against the Giants. He scored the only touchdown of the game on a one-yard keeper late in the first half. Rookie Zane Gonzalez kicked a 39-yard field goal in the third quarter to finish a 68-yard drive with Kizer at quarterback.
Kizer put 23 points on the board with three touchdowns and one field goal in the two preseason games. The Browns have not scored with Osweiler at quarterback.
"When you evaluate Brock, you might evaluate him on a little different scale as you go through than you do the others," Jackson said. "At the same time, we're going to throw it (the scoring differential) in the pot, look at it and make the best decision for the Cleveland Browns."
The Browns, 1-15 a year ago, plan to let the defense carry the load this season. Final scores of 13-10 or 17-7 could be the norm when the Browns come out on top this season.