BEREA, Ohio (AP) -The Browns want quarterback Derek Anderson back, but are prepared to begin the Brady Quinn era if no deal can be reached.
Cleveland has tendered Anderson a one-year offer for $2.5 million in 2008, and also made a three-year offer - reportedly worth $20 million, with $10 million guaranteed.
If Anderson declines the multiyear offer and becomes a restricted free agent Friday, it's unlikely he'll be back, general manager Phil Savage said Thursday.
``If he's willing to take the walk out there, there's got to be some indication there's something at the end of the rainbow,'' Savage said.
If Anderson signs with another team, Savage said the Browns wouldn't be able to match the offer. Instead, they'd take the first- and third-round pick draft picks they'd receive as compensation and turn to fan favorite Quinn as the starting quarterback.
``If Derek wants to be a Brown and really wants to stay here in Cleveland and play with the players that are on our team, then he can do that rather easily,'' Savage said. ``We can look in the mirror and know we put a strong offer out there.
``But he's earned the right to get to this point because of his play last year. We're in a good situation either way.''
Savage said the team's position isn't an ultimatum. But with free agency around the corner, the team has a budget with Anderson's three-year deal and another without it.
A message seeking comment was left with Anderson's agent, Mark Humenik.
Cleveland is desperate for help on the defensive line and at linebacker, and Savage expects to target those positions immediately in free agency.
The 24-year-old Anderson threw 29 touchdown passes and 19 interceptions last season and went 10-5 after taking over as the starter in Week 2. He made the Pro Bowl as an alternate.
Quinn, from Notre Dame, was limited to just eight passes as a rookie after the Browns traded their first-round draft pick in 2008 to take him with the No. 22 pick last April. He would remain the backup if Anderson agrees to the three-year deal.
``There's a comfort level that Brady can walk in, administrate the offense and do even more than that,'' Savage said. ``He does have some mobility, is physically strong and has a good arm. The mental part is going to end up being his greatest strength.''
If Anderson leaves, the Browns would be in the market for an experienced backup, Savage said.
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