OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The new regime in charge of the Cleveland Browns has done nothing to cement Brandon Weeden's status as the franchise quarterback and that's just fine with him.
After a rocky rookie season, Weeden is eager for the competition that new owner Jimmy Haslam has predicted prior to next season.
"I expect competition. That's the way professional sports are. Unless you're Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees or these guys, you might as well expect for somebody to try to come take your job," Weeden said Friday during an appearance at Oklahoma Christian University. "That's part of the business. But it's also the fun part. You get to compete and try to be a winner."
Weeden threw for 3,385 yards with 14 touchdowns and 17 interceptions last season after being the No. 22 draft pick out of Oklahoma State. The Browns won just five games last season, with the new ownership group getting rid of coach Pat Shurmur, general manager Tom Heckert and team president Mike Holmgren.
New coach Rob Chudzinski has called it "premature" to name Weeden the starting quarterback for next season, and Haslam suggested someone will be brought in to go against Weeden. Cleveland has the No. 6 pick in this year's draft or could pursue another quarterback by trade or in free agency.
"We're talking about a multibillion-dollar corporation, essentially," Weeden said. "There's going to be changes. Obviously, we've already seen some. But there's going to be competition. The guys that drafted me are no longer there, so I fully expect there to be competition. I would want competition. I want to go into camp and compete. If I had won 10 or 11 games last year, that may not be the case, but we weren't able to get that done."
Weeden said he's working tirelessly to improve his game, although he hasn't been able to coordinate much with Chudzinski or offensive coordinator Norv Turner, who was brought in after being fired as the San Diego Chargers' coach after last season.
"I'm going to be learning a totally different offense. It's going to be completely different than what we did last year," Weeden said. "But we all are; it's not just me. Being the quarterback, I think you want to have as much contact with those guys as possible. You're just not able to talk football. I've talked to them a couple times, but it's been very limited."
Weeden said he's impressed with Turner's resume, including his work with Philip Rivers in San Diego, and he chatted with Troy Aikman about his time with Turner during the Dallas Cowboys' heyday.
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