Dorian Thompson-Robinson will start at quarterback again when the Cleveland Browns visit the Denver Broncos on Sunday, Browns head coach Kevin Stepanski announced Monday.
The 24-year-old Thompson-Robinson was 24-for-43 with 165 passing yards and an interception in Cleveland's 13-10 Week 11 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers. The win, which came days after it was announced Deshaun Watson would miss the rest of the season due to a fractured shoulder, improved the Browns' record to 7-3.
Four of Thompson-Robinson's 24 completions came on the final drive that set up Dustin Hopkins' 34-yard game-winning field goal.
"Those are big moments where you're looking for your guy to come through. He came through," Stefanski said of Thompson-Robinson after the win. "It wasn't perfect at all times. But he came through when it mattered."
Following the Watson injury news, the Browns worked out and later signed veteran quarterback Joe Flacco to go along with P.J. Walker in the team's quarterback room. Thompson-Robinson found out he would be starting against the Steelers last Tuesday night, his 24th birthday, so he had plenty of time to prepare for his second career NFL start and not wonder if the team would instead turn to the 38-year-old Flacco.
"They believed in me, they trusted me, I trusted my teammates," Thompson-Robinson said of the Browns organization. "The biggest thing I was telling myself whole game is just stay disciplined, take it one play at a time. ... I've been working my tail off and I'm just glad my teammates were there with me."
Flacco to provide "supporting role"
Flacco last started an NFL game in Week 18 with the New York Jets and played only five games during the 2022 season, with one start since Sept. 25, 2022.
P.J. Walker, who has started two games this season for the Browns, is available should Thompson-Robinson struggle. Flacco's job, Stefanski said, is to help mentor the two younger quarterbacks on the roster.
"Joe's role is to support this team," Stefanski said. "We were able to add a guy with a ton of experience. He'll be great for that [quarterback] room, he'll be great for this team."
The Browns have won five of their last six games and sit one win behind the first-place Baltimore Ravens in the AFC North.