Let's go back to the halcyon days of 2007, when an unheralded sixth-round pick named Derek Anderson outplayed Charlie Frye and Brady Quinn to become the Browns starter. Anderson would make the Pro Bowl and win 10 games as he led Cleveland to its best season since Bill Belichick was head coach. Anderson happily shared credit with offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski, but they couldn't recapture the magic. In 2008 Anderson was on and off the injured list, and Chudzinski left Cleveland. A year later Anderson followed, blasting Browns fans on his way out:
"The fans are ruthless and don't deserve a winner," Anderson wrote Tuesday in a terse e-mail when asked for a reaction to being released. "I will never forget getting cheered when I was injured.
"I know at times I wasn't great. I hope and pray I'm playing when my team comes to town and (we) roll them."
Anderson joined the Cardinals, but was quickly benched in favor of Max Hall (this was about six terrible Arizona quarterbacks ago). In 2011 he signed with the Panthers to back up hotshot QB Cam Newton—and reunite with Rob Chudzinski. Anderson never quite got off the bench—his 2011 consisted of just two kneeldowns, and he went 4-for-4 on his only passes of 2012. But he still loves him some Chud.
"Looks like it is time to make a return to a familiar place for some unfinished business," Anderson posted on his Facebook page one day after Chudzinski was named Browns coach. "I'd be honored to return to Cleveland to play football if the fans would have me."
Ooh. This is going to be awkward.
[Anderson] is just four months older than Brandon Weeden, who just completed his rookie season with the Browns.
I'm so sorry, Cleveland.