Browns' QB Brady Quinn broke his finger during his game against the Bills on Monday Night and the latest reports are that he's going to try to play tomorrow.
If he doesn't play, it means that Derek Anderson will be taking the field. With the Browns facing a weak pass defense in the Houston Texans, there's a great chance that Anderson could have a breakout game that causes Romeo Crennel to re-name Anderson the starter. Crennel is notoriously fickle when it comes to starting quarterbacks and a single good offensive game on Sunday could be the shiny bauble needed to distract him into changing his mind.
In fact, Crennel could make the move even if Quinn CAN play. Here's the weather forecast for Cleveland tomorrow:
Windy and cold under partly cloudy skies, high of 39 degrees with winds at 13mph. Note that snow showers are in the forecast for Sunday night/Monday morning in Cleveland.
Whoooo, baby! That's football weather!
Now picture this: It's cold and grey and blustery and the Browns start off slow on Sunday. Quinn is having a hard time getting any rhythm going and the Texans jump out to a 14-0 lead. As the second half winds down, the Browns recover a Sage Rosenfels fumble at the Texans' 22 yard line. The Browns' next series goes like this:
1-10-HOU 22 (1:45) 10-B.Quinn pass incomplete short right to 17-B.Edwards
2-10-HOU 22 (1:05) 10-B.Quinn pass incomplete short middle to 82-S.Heiden
3-10-HOU 22 (:43) 10-B.Quinn pass incomplete deep left to 80-K.Winslow
With a restless crowd starting to grumble and the weather turning colder, Crennel decides he needs some points on the board. He sends out the field goal team with a swirling wind coming off the lake.
4-10-HOU 22 (:04) 4-P.Dawson 39 yard field goal is No Good, Wide Right
Boos rain down from the crowd as the dejected Browns head into the locker room. If the Browns lose the game and fall to 4-7, Crennel's job is on the line.
Under a scenario like that, how likely is it that Crennel will say something like
"Oh! Quinn's finger is bothering him! (Quinn: "No it's not coach" Crennel: "Shut up rookie!") We need to have Derek Anderson take over!! Good old Derek! I have faith in him!"
Considering Crennel's history, I'd say it's hardly a longshot prediction. If Derek Anderson is floating around your waiver wire, you might want to pick him now. If it doesn't happen, then you can drop him on Monday morning. If it does, then you have a starting NFL quarterback for fantasy depth.