Terps’ C.J. Brown suffered another injury vs. Wake Forest, leading to muddled QB situation

October 22, 2013

(Associated Press)

Maryland Coach Randy Edsall said Tuesday that quarterback C.J. Brown suffered an unspecified injury during Saturday’s loss to Wake Forest, one unrelated to the concussion he incurred Oct. 5 against Florida State.

Brown and Caleb Rowe, the team’s No. 2 quarterback for most of the season, were both listed as starting quarterbacks on the depth chart that was released Monday, indicating that Brown’s health took another hit in the loss to the Demon Deacons.

“That is because of health-related issues,” Edsall said during his weekly news conference ahead of Saturday’s home game against No. 9 Clemson. “And what we will do is both guys are cleared, and I’ll take a look this week as we practice and see where we’re at. At the end of the week, as we go into the game, we’ll make a decision to who will be the guy who will go. It wasn’t performance related. It was health related.”

Brown struggled during Maryland’s 34-10 loss to Wake Forest, leading Edsall to insert Rowe early into the second half. Brown had passed all mandatory concussion tests and said he felt “100 percent” during warmups, but absorbed three sacks and several more vicious blows from the Demon Deacons defense.

“Going into the game I felt really good,” Brown said. “Obviously I took some hits on the game early, and Coach made his decision. We’ll go out this week like any other week. I’m still getting treatment on a lot of things. Just trying to take care of my body. That’s the biggest thing. We’re more than halfway through the season. We’ve got a lot of games left. I feel comfortable with my body. I feel good.

“At the beginning of the game I felt 100 percent. I felt really good. I wouldn’t put the team in jeopardy if I wasn’t capable of going out there and helping the team, I wouldn’t be out there.”

Even though doctors cleared Brown, Edsall saw something else entirely unrelated to the concussion, something that told him Maryland’s dual-threat quarterback was struggling to fulfill his assignments.

“What I have to do as a head coach, our doctors and trainers will clear guys to be able to play in the games, but it’s my duty and it’s my obligation to watch all of our players perform in practice, perform in games using my eyesight to see how they’re performing,” Edsall said. “If they’re not performing up to the standards due to health-related issues, I think I owe it to those young man to say, ‘I’m not sure you can end up doing the things you’re capable of doing on the field.’ What I have to do is put someone else in there so not to further risk a young man to injury, even though he’s cleared, knowing what that young man can do, and what I see him doing on the field.”

Brown, who threw for just 137 yards with two interceptions against Wake Forest, declined to specify when asked whether Edsall’s decision was concussion-related, but strongly implied he suffered another injury at BB&T Field.

“The concussion, I passed all those tests,” he said. “I can’t get into injuries and details like that. I’m sure you guys ask Coach about that, so you’ll have to ask him again when that time comes.”

Brown said he plans to approach this week leading up to the Clemson game like any other, even as the Terps look to overcome season-ending injuries to wide receivers Stefon Diggs and Deon Long.

“With the situation, I’m just going to go out and do what I do,” Brown said. “I can’t really worry about what Coach …as many reps as he gives me, that’s the ones I’m going to take advantage of. I’m going to go out there like I’m the starter, like I’ve been out there the past however many practices I’ve been out there. Just go out there and run the offense the best I can, and continue to get better.”

Alex Prewitt covers the Washington Capitals. Follow him on Twitter @alex_prewitt or email him at alex.prewitt@washpost.com.
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