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Joe Thomas thinks Browns 'grooming Brock' to start

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Did Cleveland left tackle Joe Thomas just break the biggest story of Browns camp?

"I think they're grooming Brock [Osweiler] to be the starter Week 1," Thomas told reporters Wednesday, via Cleveland.com. "I don't expect DeShone Kizer to be the starter week one."

He added: "Just because DeShone [Kizer] might be good in a few years doesn't mean he's ready now."

Browns coach Hue Jackson announced Wednesday he will start Osweiler against the New York Giants on Monday. Kizer will get No. 2 reps with Cody Kessler slated to take snaps third.

While nothing is official until Jackson says it, one has to love Thomas' lack of fear in this situation. As the franchise's most important player, a person who is in nearly every meeting including, as Cleveland.com points out, ones where "Jackson consults with team leaders such as Thomas on such matters," Thomas is about as good a source as it gets.

Even though momentum was leaning in this direction for a few weeks, Thomas' quotes still mark a stunning turnaround for Osweiler. Once believed to be the human end of a salary-eating trade, Osweiler worked his way through an interesting field of quarterbacks in Cleveland to earn a preseason Week 1 start.

Outside of Kizer, who was impressive last week against the Saints, there was also Cody Kessler. Kessler began camp as the favorite and had the best working knowledge of Jackson's offense.

It's important to note that grooming doesn't necessarily mean guaranteeing. Kizer was 11 of 18 for 184 yards and a touchdown against New Orleans last week. Against significantly better competition, Osweiler was 6 of 14 for 42 yards -- numbers that must vastly improve on Monday night against the Giants if he plans on putting a stranglehold on the competition.

If Kizer continues to improve, the Browns will be caught in the difficult position of sitting the future for the sake of the present. Osweiler must make that choice worth their while.

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