BEREA, Ohio - After a week of holding back on naming a starting quarterback, Browns coach Eric Mangini officially announced on Friday that Colt McCoy will get his third career start on Sunday.
Starting McCoy against the Patriots gives the Browns coaches and fans at least one more game to see the rookie in action, before veteran quarterbacks Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace return from injuries.
“I’m just really excited to play at home, and play the best that I can to help this team win a game,” McCoy said on Friday.
Sunday will be the first time McCoy has played in Cleveland Browns Stadium since the pre-season, and he is sure to get a warm reception from the Browns fans who have longed to find a long-term solution at quarterback. But McCoy says he has not spent much time thinking about the kind of welcome he’ll receive for his first home start.
“My mindset, my focus, everything about me, is on what I have to do to go out there and play my best to help this team,” McCoy said. “I am excited to come home and play in front of our home crowd, especially for the first time.”
Going up against the Patriots is another tough opponent in McCoy’s young career, but Mangini said he has been impressed with McCoy’s poise during the first two starts, and that the rookie has confidence, not a “false bravado that some guys have.”
“I think with each experience, it helps you, because you recognize some things better and you get more comfortable adjusting,” Mangini said.
Wallace has a chance to be active in Sunday’s game, but Mangini would not specify if he would be the second or third-string quarterback. Delhomme is not as far along in the healing process as Wallace, and he will likely be inactive on Sunday.
Wallace and Delhomme have not practiced since suffering high ankle sprains against the Atlanta Falcons on Oct. 10.
Earlier in the week, team President Mike Holmgren said that once the veteran quarterbacks return from injuries, he will sit down with the coaching staff and to decide who should be the starting quarterback the rest of the season.
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