It took less than one hour after the end of the Browns-Eagles game to receive a phone message from a friend that read: "McCoy. That is all."
Here we go again. As if the Browns haven't had enough quarterback controversies since 1999, another one could be starting soon. Check that. It's started already thanks to a performance by Weeden in a 17-16 loss last Sunday that can be called historically bad.
The passer rating used by the NFL to chart a quarterback's level of play is Einstein-like in its complexities, but you don't need to be a genius to figure out a 5.1 rating isn't good. A glass-is-half-full thinker might compare it to the 0.0 pitched by Browns quarterback Jeff Garcia against the Cowboys in 2004 and find a light at the end of the tunnel.
It's difficult to compare playing quarterback in football to pitching in baseball, but if you tried you might say that Weeden, who pitched five seasons of 'A" ball in the Yankees' farm system, was wild with his control when he missed the wide-open Mohamed Massaquoi and Alex Smith in the end zone. In the final moments when the pressure of staging a drive to set up at Phil Dawson field-goal opportunity seemed to get to Weeden, you could say it was like a relief pitcher blowing a save opportunity.
Weeden did one thing right on Sunday afternoon - he took blame for the loss. He rightly credited an outstanding effort by a defense that forced five turnovers and bottled up quarterback Michael Vick for the most part before turning the sword inward.
Coach Pat Shurmur said he wasn't discouraged and that he expects Weeden to become better in coming weeks. That could happen against the Bengals Sunday in Cincinnati and at home to the Buffalo Bills the following week, but up after those games are road games against the Ravens and Giants.
Throwing in Weeden against the Eagles could be considered the equivalent of calling up a pitcher from 'A' ball and starting him against the Yankees. In the case of the Browns the issue is whether Shurmur should have started Colt McCoy and eased Weeden into the lineup.
The quick answer is the choice should have been one that will ultimately reflect best on Shurmur by producing plenty of wins. As Shurmur spoke at his post-game press conference last Sunday new owner James Haslam III was an attentive observer. You can be sure he's keeping a close watch on the quarterback situation, whether sitting in the owner's loge or at home in Knoxville ordering up the opening of another Pilot Flying J service plaza.
Shurmur did the right thing in naming Weeden the starter before the first preseason game. The mistake he might have made was not playing Weeden enough in the preseason. That strategy is for a quarterback like Tom Brady. A raw rookie like Weeden needed to be learning on the job with game repetitions.
We'll have to wait and see how Shurmur reacts now that Weeden has put up one clunker and the fan base has begun to roar. The best guess is that Shurmur will dig in his heels and show unwavering support for Weeden.
Shurmur has been a different man this season. Perhaps stung by comments that he didn't have a firm grasp of things last season, he's showing a more authoritative side this season.
Shurmur is particularly touchy when probed by the media about his dealings with players. He became irritated last week when asked if he would have someone speak to the team. The next day he took the opportunity when asked about an unrelated topic to say, "I don't need to bring in a speaker to do that."
Shurmur's patience will be tested beginning this week when he will face more questions about Weeden. He needs to remain cool and stick with the plan. Now isn't the time to go back to McCoy and his check-down passes and telegraph throws to the right side of the field.
The organization made a decision last winter that they can't win with McCoy. It doesn't look promising with Weeden after week one, but at least give him some more chances.