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Cleveland Browns to start Robert Griffin III vs. Bengals

The Cleveland Browns have come full circle at the quarterback position.

NFL Network's Michael Silver reported Thursday that the team will start Robert Griffin III under center against the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, per a team source. The team later announced the decision to go with RGIII.

Cody Kessler will back up Griffin on Sunday, coach Hue Jackson told reporters. Josh McCown likely will be inactive.

It's the decision we expected from Jackson, who anointed Griffin as Cleveland's starter before the season opener. Recently activated off injured reserve, the veteran quarterback hasn't appeared in a game since suffering a broken bone in his non-throwing shoulder in that ill-fated Week 1 loss to the Eagles.

Since then, the Browns have turned to a hodgepodge of passers -- rookies Cody Kessler and Kevin Hogan, old-as-the-trees Josh McCown and even quarterback-turned-wideout Terrelle Pryor -- to throw the ball for a club still searching for its first win.

Under contract through next season, Griffin was sold to fans in August as a potential long-term answer under center. His inability to stay healthy come September, though, looms as a major red flag for any team that sees him as more than a spot starter.

Forward-thinking Browns fans might wonder why Kessler wouldn't simply finish out the season. His two concussions are one possible reason, but don't ignore the bleak win-loss column. Jackson clearly believes Griffin gives the Browns their best chance for a victory -- which is exactly how he felt before Week 1.

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