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Published: Friday, 3/12/2010

Browns' QB hunt turns to Delhomme

ASSOCIATED PRESS

CLEVELAND - The Cleveland Browns spent another day looking for a new quarterback by meeting with an older one.

Free agent Jake Delhomme, released last week after seven seasons with the Carolina Panthers, visited yesterday with the perpetually rebuilding Browns, who have been busy this week trying to improve their unstable situation at QB.

The Browns confirmed the 35-year-old Delhomme spent time at the team's offices in Berea, Ohio. They also said free agent tight end Ben Watson and running back Justin Fargas met with coach Eric Mangini and front-office personnel.

The Browns have been actively shopping for a quarterback, a position they haven't been able to adequately fill since their NFL expansion return in 1999. Earlier this week, the team acquired backup Seneca Wallace in a trade from Seattle and released Derek Anderson.

The club's interest in Delhomme seems to indicate a reluctance to hand the starting job back to Quinn, who has struggled as a pro. Quinn is just 3-9 in 12 career starts with Cleveland.

Agent Rick Smith would not comment on Delhomme's visit to Cleveland.

Quinn was rumored to be on the trading block last year, but the Browns didn't find a suitable deal, and he began the 2009 season as their starter. He was replaced just 2 1/2 games in by Anderson, who couldn't hold down the job and was eventually benched.

Browns president Mike

Holmgren, who has spent his career developing quarterbacks, has yet to endorse Quinn, another sign the club may be trying to trade him.

It's not known if the Browns have offered Delhomme a contract. If he's signed by the club, he could serve as a mentor for Quinn or possibly take over as starter while Cleveland grooms another QB. The Browns currently have 11 draft picks, and it's possible they could use a high one on a college prospect.

Delhomme went 58-40 in seven seasons as the Panthers' starter and led them to their only Super Bowl. However, he threw 18 interceptions last season.



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