Browns rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer received his unofficial AFC North introduction in the second quarter Sunday. He shuffled into the middle of the field before launching into a slide a few yards later. That’s when Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier planted his helmet in Kizer’s shoulder and drove it into the ground.
The hit drew an unnecessary roughness penalty, but it was an informal salute. Kizer can expect more in Week 2 at Baltimore. He’s going to get hit, but Cleveland can’t let him get hit this much.
RC: The answer has to be DeShone Kizer. The rookie from Notre Dame had a wonderful preseason (and it was clear Brock Osweiler was not the answer at quarterback for the Browns). Kizer was named the Week 1 starter and, barring injury or extremely poor play, he should start all 16 games.
Kizer’s main competition will be Chicago’s Mitchell Trubisky, who should supplant Mike Glennon as the Bears’ starter by the end of the season.
Game Kids Tavon Young Jersey Patrick Mahomes will only start for the Chiefs this season if Alex Smith gets hurt, and DeShaun Watson is the clear No. 2 quarterback in Houston. If the Texans fall out of playoff contention late in the season, the Texans might switch from Tom Savage to Watson. But Kizer has the best chance of any of the rookie QBs to make double-digit starts this season.
NM: Trubisky is the likely answer. The Bears have some talent on both sides of the ball, particularly at running back and on the defensive line, but they are likely to be hamstrung by the investment they made in Mike Glennon at quarterback. Glennon has been terrible this preseason and there is little history to suggest he will improve in the regular season. Coach John Fox’s job is on the line going into the campaign and, once the Bears lose a few games, expect Fox to turn to the player on whom Chicago spent the No. 2 overall pick.