Much was made of the Browns’ decision to draft a 28-year-old quarterback a season ago. But if Brandon Weeden fails to produce this fall his age likely becomes inconsequential to Cleveland fans.

“If Brandon doesn’t do it this year we’re going to be starting over again at quarterback” former Browns coach Sam Rutigliano said.

Not long ago few could imagine giving up on a first-round quarterback after just two seasons. Nowadays few would refute Rutligliano’s assessment. Not just in Cleveland but throughout the NFL.

As the position grows in importance and more college quarterbacks arrive in the league ready to play the pressure on incumbents has never been higher.

Blaine Gabbert the No. 10 overall pick in 2011 is under fire in Jacksonville. Christian Ponder the No. 12 pick in the same draft class could be done in Minnesota if he doesn’t elevate his game a season after the Vikings reached the playoffs.

In the NFL hurry-up offense no longer just relates to tempo -- it’s a state of mind. Produce or step aside.

• Albert Breer of the NFL Network noted of the 24 quarterbacks selected in 2009 and 2010 only five are currently with their original teams.
• Peter King of Sports Illustrated observed of the 21 QBs drafted in the first and second rounds between 2006-10 there are six solid starters and eight out of football.

“We are just one game into the season and there’s already four guys where we’re saying ‘You have to make a change here”’ said former Baltimore Ravens coach Brian Billick an analyst for NFL Network. “It’s a tough league. It’s unreasonable after only one game but welcome to the NFL today.”

Billick captured a Super Bowl title in 2000 with Trent Dilfer under center. But in a passer’s league one incorporating more elements of spread offense from the college ranks caretaker quarterbacks are going the way of corded telephones. Everyone is looking for a dynamic signal caller – and with rookie salary caps in place since 2011 – teams are no longer being financially penalized for missing on a JaMarcus Russell.