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Rookie Colt McCoy Can Not Afford To Blow Off Season Despite Expected Bench Time

Sometimes the best progress can be made while watching the game from the sideline.

Some of the best field generals in the NFL became the great leaders they are with patience; not only from them, but from their coaches and front office representatives. There's an old saying which goes "patience is a virtue," and is applicable in the situation the Browns are experiencing with their rookie quarterback.

Colt McCoy is expected to see little, if any, playing time come the 2010 NFL campaign. Whether it is the right decision or not, only time will tell. But it sure seems logical. However, this does not mean that he shouldn't be preparing for when the real action starts for him.

Professional athletes use every single day to get better; no matter how they are expected to be used by their coaches. This is something a guy like Carson Palmer did with the Bengals when he was drafted in 2003. The Bengals did not use him for one snap the whole year, and it ended up being the best thing for not only Palmer, but the team itself. The Bengals now have an All-Pro quarterback because of the decision their coaches made.

The Browns might have the same thing on their hands.

 The best thing that Colt can do right now is become a human sponge and soak up every little aspect he can about the game. Palmer spent much of his time with the offensive coordinator trying to piece together new concepts of how to run a good offense. This time, McCoy will learn similar things from new Browns quarterback Jake Delhomme.

Delhomme has been there, and done that before in his career. He has seen the height of his NFL career slide right before him as his former team, the Carolina Panthers, lost to New England in the SuperBowl XXXVIII. He fell, but he picked himself back up and had a strong season the next year.

Right now, the Browns, lead by Mike Holmgren, won't allow the fragile McCoy to fall this early. This is how some quarterbacks ruin their careers; they become a virtual human punching bag as the sack artists of the defense can work their magic on a young gunslinger. The quarterback suffers bumps and bruises not necessarily just to the body, but to the brain, in multiple ways.

In order to lead, one must have confidence in themselves. Playing with subpar talent with the offensive supporting cast on a team where the offensive line is average at best, but improving, doesn't seem like the right time to bring him in.

But when McCoy does get the chance to play, he better be ready. Cleveland fans will expect nothing less when his number gets called into the offense. He has one year to get his skill level to where it needs to be, and he can not afford to mess that up.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.