Just one game into the season, the Cleveland Browns will make a change at quarterback, as the team on Tuesday afternoon dealt third-year veteran Charlie Frye, who started Sunday's regular-season opener but was benched early in the game, to the Seattle Seahawks.
It is believed that the Browns, who spent much of Monday seeking a trade partner for Frye, received a draft choice in return.
There is no word yet on who will start for Cleveland in next Sunday's home game against the Cincinnati Bengals. The departure of Frye could pave the way for the Browns to turn the starting job over to first-round draft pick Brady Quinn of Notre Dame, but general manager Phil Savage on Monday cautioned that it might be too early for the former Notre Dame star to be elevated to that status.
Savage cited the 1999 season when, after a blowout loss to Pittsburgh, the Browns benched starting veteran Ty Detmer and moved first-round pick Tim Couch, the top overall selection in the draft that year, into the lineup. Cleveland finished 2-14 that season, and Couch, clearly not ready yet to start, struggled throughout the year.
There had been rumors following Sunday's lopsided loss to the Steelers that Frye might be traded or released. Frye completed only four of 10 passes for 34 yards and an interception in the game -- a QB rating of 10.0 -- and was replaced by Derek Anderson at 6;34 of the second quarter. Anderson did not fare much better, going 13-of-28 for 184 yards.
Those rumors gained some steam Monday when journeyman quarterback Ken Dorsey, who had been a mentor to Quinn in training camp, arrived at the Browns' complex. The team is expected to re-sign Dorsey, a four-year veteran, on Tuesday afternoon.
Frye, 26, was a third-round choice in the 2005 draft, and the former Akron star moved into the starting lineup in the final month of his rookie campaign. He started the first 13 games in 2006, then missed the final three outings of the year with a wrist injury.
In camp this summer, Frye competed with Anderson for the top job on the depth chart, and was named the starter the week before the opener. But the loss to Pittsburgh was disastrous and the Browns decided to make a quick change.
In his three-year career, Frye has completed 354 of 568 passes for 3,490 yards, with 14 touchdown passes and 24 interceptions, for an efficiency rating of 70.2. He has started in 19 of his 21 appearances.
With the Seahawks, Frye will be the No. 3 quarterback on the depth chart, behind starter Matt Hasselbeck and primary backup Seneca Wallace, who recently signed a contract extension. The Seahawks have been seeking another veteran quarterback since releasing David Greene in the final cutdown to the 53-player roster.