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Cleveland Browns

Pro Bowl fallout?

By Marla Ridenour Published: February 12, 2008

Observers can only guess what kind of effect Browns quarterback Derek Anderson's poor performance in Sunday's Pro Bowl will have on ongoing contract negotiations.

In the AFC's 42-30 loss, Anderson completed 10 of 26 passes for 103 yards with no touchdowns and an interception for a quarterback rating of 34.6.

Those who had some interest in the soon-to-be restricted free agent surely will notice he had the lowest rating of the six quarterbacks who saw action. Anderson's 34.6 rating also suffered in comparison to those of Peyton Manning (118.5), Ben Roethlisberger (104.8), Matt Hasselbeck (139.8), Jeff Garcia (109.2) and Tony Romo (85.2), who didn't appear to be there just for the sun and fun.

Anderson proved valuable to AFC and San Diego coach Norv Turner in the first half, signalling plays to Manning and Roethlisberger because Turner's Chargers and the Browns run the same offense. But lip-readers could have had a field day in the second half watching Turner's expressions and remarks while Anderson threw behind receivers, even teammates Braylon Edwards and Kellen Winslow.

Ironically, even Garcia (who lasted just one season in Cleveland when then-coach Butch Davis asked him to run an offense he wasn't suited for) appeared to be on a different level than Anderson. Anderson played the entire second half and with the game on the line in the fourth quarter and facing virtually no defense, he couldn't move his team.

Will the Browns believe one bad Sunday in Hawaii was meaningless, or will it help convince them that Brady Quinn is their quarterback of the future? Will they pull back in their efforts to sign him to a multi-year contract? And perhaps more importantly to Anderson's future, what will the rest of the league think? Will anyone want to give the Browns first- and third-round draft choices if Cleveland offers him the highest tender of $2.562 million later this month? It only takes one team, of course, but that possibility might be a little less likely.

There may be a drought of top-flight quarterbacks in the league. But when Anderson got his chance to step on the field with most of them, he didn't measure up.

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