Sportress of Blogitude

Campaign ‘derps’ and Cleveland Browns: Paul Ryan confuses team’s quarterbacks

Weeden, laughing about the fact Ryan has no idea who in the hell he is

With the election only a mere few weeks away, campaigning for the highest offices in the land are ramping up to a frenetic pace. From one campaign stop to the next, stump speech following stump speech, glad-handing and photo-ops all blur into one another.

In light of the breakneck pace of it all, it’s hardly surprising that the four candidates seeking the office of the President and Vice President have a misstep or two from time to time. Such was the case on Wednesday, when Paul Ryan, the Congressman from Wisconsin and Mitt Romney’s running mate, made a bit of a quarterback identification gaffe while visiting a Cleveland Browns practice in Berea, Ohio, the highly contested state that will have a huge role in determining the outcome of the presidential race.

According to a pool report, Ryan was speaking to the entire team when he believed he was singling out Brandon Weeden. While praising the quarterback, Ryan reportedly said he recalled watching Weeden play at Oklahoma State. That’s all well and good: Weeden in fact did play for the Cowboys. The problem was that Ryan was pointing at and speaking to Weeden’s fellow Browns quarterback, Colt McCoy. Oops.

Ryan, being a savvy politician, quickly regained his footing, apologizing for the mistake before saying to Weeden, “You always had your helmet on.” A good save, indeed, and in the grand scheme of things, a story that should elicit only a chuckle and not a condemnation of the candidate’s ability to potentially fulfill the duties inherent of the office he is seeking.

Still, it’s likely that Ryan was at least the slightest bit embarrassed by the error. In fact, in the moment, Ryan likely would have preferred to be anywhere else instead of standing in front of the assembled Browns players. Possibly at a soup kitchen, washing dishes. Dirty ones, even.

(photo credit: John Kuntz, The Plain Dealer)