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Despite big game from Max Browne, Ben DiNucci still an option for Pat Narduzzi

The Pitt head coach says if Browne struggles, he will go back to the sophomore

Pittsburgh v Georgia Tech Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images

Max Browne had a monster game last weekend against Rice. Right now, he’s the unquestioned starter and will be under center against Syracuse this weekend.

But if you think he’s locked in for the season, think again. Head coach Pat Narduzzi was asked about his quarterback situation again this week in his weekly press conference and says Ben DiNucci could still make a return.

“Max has got to continue to play well or Ben will jump back in there,” he insisted.

But that also doesn’t mean Max is getting a quick hook. And if you listen to what Narduzzi says, you can tell he liked how well Browne played last weekend.

“To me I saw a different, more calm, composed guy that made quicker decisions,” Narduzzi said.

“I love what I saw.”

For Pitt’s sake, I hope they are able to stick with Browne going forward. I thought it was wrong to replace DiNucci last weekend for reasons I outlined several times. But there’s no doubt that the decision to play Browne was a good one. It’s all going to be about protecting him going forward. Narduzzi knows that and emphasized the play of the line last week as one reason Browne had so much success.

“Our offense did a great job,” he added. “We gave up three sacks, and one was a tight end, one was a back, one was a lineman. But overall, we protected the quarterback for as much twists and movement they were giving us inside.”

Fortunately for Pitt, Syracuse’s pass rush has underwhelmed. They’re down near the very bottom of the FBS in sacks and that should bode well for Browne having time to throw on Saturday.

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