New coach Pat Shurmur said earlier this month that it would be a logical assumption that second-year quarterback Colt McCoy will be the Browns starter in 2011.
But NFL Network analyst Mike Lombardi, the former Browns director of player personnel under coach Bill Belichick, said McCoy has some work to do in the weight room to be their long-term answer at the position.
McCoy, listed as 6-foot-1 and 215 pounds, got his chance when Jake Delhomme suffered a high-ankle sprain in the season opener and backup Seneca Wallace suffered the same injury in Game 5 against Atlanta. McCoy also suffered a high ankle sprain at Jacksonville in Game 10.
For the season, McCoy went 2-6 as a starter with a rating of 74.5. He completed 60.8 percent and threw six touchdown passes, but had nine interceptions, six in the final two games against Baltimore and Pittsburgh.
"I think Colt did a really good job for a young quarterback,'' Lombardi said. "What he did this year was impressive. (As far as) durability, I think his body's got to get bigger, his body's got to get stronger, his arm's got to improve. He's got to follow the same thing that (Green Bay's) Aaron Rodgers did. For him to take the next step, he's got to really recondition his body.
"To play in the NFL, 16 games, 60 minutes and to take the pounding quarterbacks take, if your body's not ready it's not going to be able to do it. Now he's got to take the next step forward. That's going to be difficult until he changes his body.''
In a 20-minute interview at the podium at the NFL Scouting Combine, Lombardi discussed several Browns- and AFC North-related issues.