Here are several responses we received from Browns fans in our AFC North inbox:
Ty from Atlanta, Ga., writes: We need to re-examine how the fans treat QBs? Tell us when we had a consistent starter to cheer for in the first place. You also didn't mention how miserable the QB situation has been since the Browns returned. You usually write pretty accurate stuff but you are way off base on this. I bet if you had interviewed this frustrated fan base you would know why we look to the guy with the clipboard. Maybe it's because the starter is either always hurt or the starter is never consistent. That's a front-office thing not a fan thing.
Tony from Rootstown, Ohio, writes: Come on, James. Do you really blame us for coveting the official clipboard holder? The poor level of play we have been subjected to the last 10 years is mind numbing. Most Browns fans are embarrassed that the minority booed Derek that day he laid hurt. Most of us don’t wish to see these men hurt, let alone enjoy it. If the players don’t consider 10 years of sellout crowds, $4 hot dogs, $8 beer and hundreds, if not thousands, for tickets a sign of support, what should we do as fans? We are frustrated. Take a look at what we have endured as fans, the team redefines inept with every season and Sunday. Yeah, its the fans fault.
Kovacs from Santa Monica writes: I get your point JW, but Browns fans aren't changing their ways. We are dyed in the wool, stubborn maniacs. Should we have cheered when DA got hurt? No. Was it all his fault? No. Frustration is the word. How can a franchise with such a proud history at QB be left with the garbage that we've had since rejoining the league? Our two best seasons of QB play during that period came from flash in the pan one-year wonders (Kelly Holcomb and DA). Other than that the position has been absolutely garbage. So I say again, we probably shouldn't have cheered when the guy got hurt.
Doug Kitts from Ravenna, Ohio, writes: Cleveland is a brutal town for QBs, yes. But can't some of the blame be laid at the feet of the coaching staffs that have been here. Ever since the Holcomb/Tim Couch debate began with Butch Davis there hasn't been a single coaching staff that has completely backed a QB. If you combine that sort of wishy-washy front with a very frustrated and reactionary fan base it's no wonder the fans so quickly turn. Look, fans should have never cheered for any player to be injured. I don't, by any stretch, condone it. But there comes a point in time that maybe it's not just a cynical group of fans. Maybe it's their reaction to complete and utter ineptitude since this "franchise" was brought back to Cleveland. The front office and coaching staff can do a lot to "set the tone" for a fan base.
Bruce Hicks from Indianapolis, Ind., writes: I enjoy your writing but was blown away by your latest blog. D. Anderson has every right to his opinion and I don't think he needed to apologize. However, except in maybe four NFL towns, the backup QB is always popular and Cleveland IS frustrated. What NFL city wouldn't be that's hoping for one decent starter? And, with Quinn and Anderson we have zero.
Justin from Cleveland writes: I understand why DA would feel so strongly about the fans here. But seriously, he threw away so many games in 2007. I watched most of the games and if he could have connected on short routes and really been the reason we won 10 games, then we would love him. It just remains that he was awful. He was never a good personality, preferring golf over football constantly. If he could have gotten it together and tried AT ALL he could have been ok. But he threw so many bad passes that he played himself out of our favor.
Josh from Atlanta, Ga., writes: You said the backup QB is the most popular in Cleveland. Well, that's only because the starter has been so bad since Couch was here. Even in Anderson's Pro Bowl season his numbers against winning teams were TERRIBLE. How [former GM] Phil Savage didn't see that is beyond me.