The Cleveland Browns had one of the more eventful weeks in recent memory leading up to their road game against the Minnesota Vikings. At 0-2, Cleveland decided to make a blockbuster move by trading starting running back and 2012 first-round pick Trent Richardson to the Indianapolis Colts for a pick in next year’s first round.
On the same day, third string quarterback Brian Hoyer was named the starter for week three’s matchup against Minnesota. In a rather curious move, many were surprised the Browns didn’t turn to backup Jason Campbell.
A couple of days later, there were already rumors surfacing that the Browns would begin to search for potential trade partners regarding wide receivers Josh Gordon and Greg Little. Talk about a team on a sure-fire pace to “tank” the 2013 season away.
Little did the organization know, Hoyer wasn’t about to let the team begin that miserable stretch without a fight. In short, Hoyer was pretty impressive in a win over the Vikings on Sunday as he tossed three touchdowns, including a game-winner with under a minute to go in the fourth quarter.
Hoyer ended with 321 yards, three touchdowns and three picks. In a relatively good game despite the picks, it begs the question: Will Hoyer continue to start even when Brandon Weeden is back from a sprained thumb?
Weeden was thought to need surgery to repair the sprain, but it appears he could be ready as early as next week. The Browns very well could have a quarterback controversy in the coming days.
Sure, Hoyer threw three picks. He made some poor decisions. But, in his first ever NFL start, what else would you expect from a guy who a few days earlier was sitting third on the depth chart? Coming in and performing like he did on Sunday was nothing short of impressive.
What impressed me the most about Hoyer was his ability to get rid of the ball quickly and on a rope. He’s got a cannon. I suppose not many would have known that due to his never starting a game prior to week three, but he’s got a cannon nonetheless.
In the coming days and maybe even hours, I would expect the talk to heat up about Hoyer’s future this season. The Browns may be looking to stack their draft picks for next year, but Hoyer isn’t concerned about that just yet. He wants to win. He wants to win now.