The Cleveland Browns will start Deshaun Watson vs. the Arizona Cardinals this week, per Jake Trotter of ESPN. But the Browns have no idea who Cardinals coach Jonathan Gannon is planning to start. They only know it will be either a guy making his first career start, or a guy returning to the lineup that has given the Browns a tough time so far in his career.
However, per a report from the Cardinals official site, we may not find out who will be the starter until Saturday. If the Cards activate Kyler Murray from the PUP list by 1:00 p.m. tomorrow, you very well may see him make his season debut. If that’s not the case, then expect Clayton Tune to start, and Jeff Driskel will be the backup.
Source: Jonathan Gannon holds off on naming a starting quarterback by Darren Urban, AZCardinals.com
Any “competitive advantage” is good for the Arizona Cardinals in 2023
Now, chances are that Gannon already knows who will be the starter, regardless of what he may say today or even tomorrow morning. For all we know, those could be smokescreens, and if that’s the case, then kudos to the first-year head coach.
While it’s true that Gannon’s reluctance to name the starting quarterback for Sunday, perhaps until the last possible minute may not give the Redbirds a “competitive advantage” at all, it shouldn’t matter. There’s always the possibility that they could gain one, and when you are facing arguably the NFL’s best defense, then it doesn’t hurt to at least keep that defense guessing.
And Gannon shouldn’t stop there - when you are 1-7, you need to rack up any and all advantages you can get, regardless of how big or small they are. Maybe nothing will come out of Gannon staying mum on who the Arizona Cardinals starting quarterback will be this Sunday, or, maybe it will leave the Browns scrambling to perfect their game plan within a 24-hour span.