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The Secretive Brad Childress and Eric Mangini

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Well, we don't have a battle for the starting quarterback slot that Brad Childress can remain secretive about until the last minute -- but hey, he can still keep quiet about the backup quarterback, right?  Indeed, it turns out we won't know who the backup is until right before kickoff next week in Cleveland:

"We'll end up declaring that probably and hour-and-a-half before the game," Childress told reporters after a brief practice at Winter Park. "But at least you know who the starter is."

Does this whole charade even matter?  Not really, but there just aren't too many other question marks heading into this week's game.  While both Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels each played one good game during the preseason, their three other performances were hardly memorable.  Stay tuned until Sunday morning.

But the "drama" surrounding this team's mystery backup quarterback will be overshadowed by the "drama" surrounding Eric Mangini's intention to keep the identity of his starting quarterback a secret.  He has, of course, already decided between Brady Quinn and Derek Anderson -- he's just not telling anyone what his decision is.  And though Mangini's doing his best impression of Brad Childress doing an impression of Bill Belichick, Mike Florio points out the starter for the upcoming week won't remain a secret for long.  Someone's going to blab:

And then once the Browns start practicing in preparation for Sunday's game against Minnesota, word surely will emerge as to whether it's Brady Quinn or Derek Anderson.  It will be impossible to get the other players on the team to keep quiet, regardless of whether Mangini thinks that he can scare them silent.

So the Vikings probably won't be confronted with two quarterbacks to prepare for.  And even if the starter remains secret, one must wonder just how much that would help the Browns.  Mangini's secretive strategy will likely give the Browns the same advantage that Childress gave the Vikings when he's used this tactic -- no advantage at all.