Delhomme Won't "Rock the Boat"

Fred Greetham reports from Berea, where veteran quarterback Jake Delhomme vows to support whatever is best for the team. Plus, an update on Marcus Benard and injured Browns.

BEREA, Ohio—Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace were both practicing on Thursday. It was the first time the pair has been on the field together since Oct. 10, when both were injured against the Falcons. There has been a lot of speculation about what Eric Mangini will do when all three quarterbacks are available. Mangini has said that there will be a ‘discussion' between himself, Brian Daboll and Mike Holmgren.

Mangini was asked if that has taken place yet.

"They're not all healthy, yet."

Mangini was asked if he was ready to name Colt McCoy the starter and his answer was similar to what he said in previous weeks.

"We're heading in that direction."

Mangini maintains he's happy with all of the quarterbacks.

"What I'm saying is that we've got three guys that we all feel very good about," Mangini said. "I think Colt has done a really good job and I like the way that he is able to take more each week and it's a great thing and it's fun to watch. I'm proud of what he's done. Now, it's just a function of getting all of our guys healthy, seeing where we are and making the best decision."

Both quarterbacks were asked about the situation regarding the play of McCoy. Both sound as though and if he should remain the starter.

"I think it's a good problem to have," Delhomme said. "Colt has played outstanding. You didn't get to see a whole lot from him in the spring and training camp because Seneca and I got most of the reps.

"The game doesn't seem too big to him," he said. "He's made adjustments extremely well and I'm proud of him. (Who plays) will play itself out. Seneca and I need to get healthy.

"We're not going to rock the boat, I'll tell you that much," Delhomme said. "Whatever is best for the team. Whatever happens is going to happen."

Wallace said a couple of weeks ago that he felt he stated his case to start when he was healthy. However, he backed off that on Thursday.

"I'm not going to rush it," Wallace said. "Colt is playing well, so I'm not going to rush it. "We'll see how the week goes.

"The guy who is established and playing well and moving the ball should keep playing."

Delhomme has been impressed with McCoy's play.

"The guys do believe in him," he said. "The game is not too big for him."

Both quarterbacks sound like they're not ready to play yet.

"I'm taking baby steps right now to get on the field, "Delhomme said.

"I have to knock off a little rust," Wallace said. "Rust is obviously going to be a question. I just have to continue to work in practice on my timing."

The season, obviously, has not gone the way Delhomme was hoping it would. He suffered a high ankle sprain in the season opener against Tampa Bay and after sitting out several weeks, re-injured the ankle in a substitute role on Oct. 10 against the Falcons. Delhomme might have lost his starting job to not only Wallace, but McCoy.

"With the NFL, you never know what hand you're going to be dealt," Delhomme said. "I've played a quarter-and-a-half of healthy football. You can't feel sorry for yourself, but just make the most of the situation."

Mangini has been impressed with the way Delhomme has handled himself.

"He's been a great teammate, leader and mentor."

Notebook

Benard Update: LB Marcus Benard was ‘alert and stable' after being taken to a local hospital after collapsing in the locker room just before Thursday's practice. It happened during the portion of the locker room that is open to the media. Neal Gulkis said there will be updates later.

Injury Update: Mike Adams (head), QB Jake Delhomme (ankle) and DL Shaun Rogers (ankle) did not practice Wednesday, while OL Kenyon Coleman (knee, OL John St. Clair (ankle) and QB Seneca Wallace (ankle) were limited.

Mangini said that all the players would practice on Thursday, including Delhomme, with the exception of Coleman, who is resting his knee. Mangini said that Adams suffered a mild concussion against the Patriots, but would practice Thursday.

Hillis Key Component: Mangini said that in the trade of QB Brady Quinn to Denver, RB Peyton Hillis was a key component in the deal, not just a throw-in as many thought at the time.

"He was a key part of the deal," he said.

Mangini said he talked with Hillis after the trade and told him there was no reason he couldn't come here and be a 1000 yard rusher and play a big role in the Browns offense. He liked his ability to play fullback, as well to be effective catching passes on third down.

The trade happened before the draft and the Browns still traded up in the second-round to select RB Montario Hardesty.

"You can never have enough good players at a position with injuries," Mangini said.

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