AFC South: Colt Brennan
Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky
|Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images|
|Redskins rookie Colt Brennan was nine-for-10 for 123 yards and two touchdowns in his Washington debut.|
CANTON, Ohio -- Jim Zorn never saw 12 men on the field, he never saw 10.
In some coaching debuts, that alone would have been a small victory. But Zorn got a bigger one than that tonight.
It doesn't count, no, but a preseason 30-16 win over Indianapolis in the Hall of Fame Game came with calm coaches in control, not the sort of chaos some staffs have to work through at the start. Zorn, a former quarterback hired largely to mold a quarterback got strong play from his signal callers, who posted a collective 147.2 rating thanks to three touchdowns paired with three incompletions.
"I felt like it was a big win for me because it was my first time out, what we accomplished was pretty special," Zorn said. "I thought it was very smooth."
Zorn's lead quarterback, Jason Campbell, didn't play long, but didn't miss while he was in, hitting on all five of his passes.
"He wasn't just looking at it, 'Oh, just give me 10 plays and I'll get out,'" Zorn said. "He was really looking at finishing drives. So he gave me what I wanted and I think he gave the team what they needed as far as his leadership, his accuracy. He was very disciplined by staying with reads and not deviating from what we had planned."
The Colts may have helped the Redskins out with a failed onside kick at the start of the game that left Washington with great field position to go get a quick touchdown. But the Redskins also had a 15-play, 88-yard drive that ate 7:46 off the fourth quarter clock and put them up for good.
Zorn was also pleased that rookie quarterback Colt Brennan, who put in extra study time the last three days, handled his time in the huddle so well -- nine-for-10 for 123 yards and two touchdowns.
"He kind of stepped it up for himself in the last few days," Zorn said. "He had some really slick throws, a few of them were really dangerous throws. But he was looking and going to the right guy when we were dropping back. He even took a couple of checkdowns and scrambled and threw a touchdown pass."
Said Brennan: "He has a thing where we are responsible for knowing the formations, he doesn't call it, we have to know it -- and it being my first game, that's a lot of formations to remember and a lot of different situations. What it did was really made me grind out the study hours, kind of lock in the offense and it helped me be a lot more confident with what we were doing."
Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky
CANON, Ohio -- Right to second-half observations...
- Wow, a timeout for Indianapolis before its first play from scrimmage in the second half. To be clear, that's a touchback and a timeout before a snap. Just in case you were mistaking this for Peyton Manning's September-October Colts.
- Newly minted Hall of Famers Darrell Green and Emmitt Thomas did their interviews with the NBC crew in the booth, not from the sideline. No elevator here. They may be immortalized in bronze, but they'll still walk up 40 stairs to chat with Al Michaels and John Madden.
- Clinton Portis, who didn't play and Shawn Springs, who did, spent much of the third quarter wide of the bench area, chatting and seeming to enjoy life. Bob Sanders, who's not even dressed, was across the field from them. We've got coach-to-quarterback and coach-to-defender communication devices. How about stars-to-stars after halftime of the first of five preseason games? I guess those are called cell phones and we'd frown upon their use. Be fun to listen in, though.
- The second completion of Colt Brennan's NFL life was a beautiful 34-yarder that Billy McMullen did well to corral as it dropped right in front of him as he angled to the left side. Brennan may never make it at this level, but with that throw you can see the sort of thing that makes him intriguing. A few plays later he held it forever, took a sack and you could see what makes him very iffy. Then he immediately threw a 20-yard TD pass to Maurice Mann and you could what makes him intriguing. He surely earned more of a look -- finishing nine-for-10 for 123 yards and two touchdowns before he was replaced by Derek Devine.
- Jared Lorenzen dropped back, stepped up, took off, ran to the right sideline for a 9-yard first down and went out of bounds. Who, exactly, would rather step up and take him on than get an earful at a film review session? A few plays later, Chris Horton got both arms around the massive QB in the backfield, but it took a while to actually tip the 6-foot-4, 285-pound Lorenzen over. Some teammates could have taken a knee to catch their breath while they waited. You have to guess none of them have had practice at toppling a guy that size in the pocket, or have ever seen it done.
Back in a bit after we see what they're saying downstairs.