When I was a kid, from time to time, I would ask my mother for a cookie. If her initial response was no, I would whine, and tell her why I deserved a cookie. If that didn’t work, I would seek out another adult to give me the cookie I felt I so richly deserved. Never at any point would I draft a letter saying, “cookie distribution is one-sided in favor of the adults.”
Anyone catch the latest edition of Peter King’s Monday Morning Quarterback? Didn’t think so. I saw this on Profootballtalk.com like the rest of you did.
Ok, let’s talk about it. Obviously PK did this for some sort of effect. I’m just spit balling here, but if King puts the Lions last, the majority of people reading will look at the column and say, “oh wow, Peter King has the last three teams to win Super Bowls in his top 3, and the Lions as the worst team. Now I remember why I stopped reading him a few years ago.”
Now I don’t want to get all crazy and overhyped here with the Browns less than a week into training camp, but things are already looking good for the upcoming season, at least in the division, with the other three AFC North teams suffering relative setbacks during week one of training camp. Let’s go team-by-team.
Casey Hampton is so old and fat… HOW OLD AND FAT IS HE? Casey Hampton is so old and fat that he could not pass his training camp running test (something that Troy Polamalu and his injured hamstring had no problem with). Mike Tomlin was so pissed at “Big Snack” that he banished the Pro Bowl nose tackle to the PUP list until he could get in better shape. With myriad questions facing the highly suspect Pittsburgh lines, having their A-1 All-Pro NT benched for being old and fat is probably not what the Stillers were looking for. This is obviously good news for the Browns because with a week 2 matchup looming with The Team They Cannot Beat and center still the relatively weak link on the O-Line, not seeing Hank Fraley have to line up against Casey Hampton means more time for DA and better holes for Jamal.
Carson Palmer is so douchey… well, you get the idea. Distractions are fun when they aren’t happening to your team, and they seem to be a dime a dozen in the biggest city in Kentucky. Is Chris Henry coming back? What’s Chad Johnson going to say next? Will Carson’s OSU diatribe cause a fan backlash? Can the defense hold opponents under 600 total yards per game? What in God’s name does “Who Dey” mean? So many questions, so few answers. We saw last year that Marvin Lewis can only keep so many plates spinning at once, so the more distractions the Bungles have, the better it is for the Browns (and the rest of the division). On a personal note, someone should probably tell Carson Palmer that he shouldn’t go out of his way to take shots at other teams, pro or collegiate, until he himself has won something. Oh, you say you won a Heisman, Carson? You know who else won the Heisman? Jason White, Eric Crouch, Gino Torretta and Andre Ware. Maybe even just lead your team to their second over-.500 season in 18 years? Just a thought.
I was planning on mentioning the Antwan Odom injury, but now that appears to just be a foot sprain.
Troy Smith is the current favorite to be the Baltimore Ravens’ quarterback. I’m going to repeat that, as it bears repeating: Troy Smith is the current favorite to be the Baltimore Ravens’ quarterback. Unless the Ravens somehow manage to sign Ted Ginn Jr. and Santonio Holmes, and manage to replace all of their opponents’ secondary players with Michigan DBs (hello, Leon Hall!), that will likely turn out poorly for the Jailbirds. This is obviously great news for the Browns because the Ravens’ blatant disregard for the passing game will cover up any potential shortcomings the Brownies will have at corner. Just a thought: if you combined the Ravens’ defense and the Bengals’ offense, that team would win 13 games… which is kinda funny because I’m not sure if those two teams will combine for 13 wins this year.
As far as the Browns go, I’m liking a relatively quiet start to training camp in Berea. As far as I’m concerned, no news is good news in training camp and there hasn’t been anything crazy (yet). If the Browns can keep a low profile heading into September, things look good for the 2008 season, tough schedule be damned.
Also, you probably already know this but James Walker’s AFC North blog on ESPN.com is quite fantastic. If you haven’t taken the time yet, you ought to.
The Browns most likely are not done at the cornerback position. After the signing of Terry Cousins, most Clevelanders thought that we would get another Terry Cousins-like name to bolster our numbers. Turns out that could be very true, because it seems as if Mr. Savage has eyes for Denver’s Domonique Foxworth:
Foxworth could be more available than most starting-quality corners because he is not a penciled-in starter in Denver. Foxworth has played extensively at both cornerback and safety in his three NFL seasons.
Because he is a nickel cornerback and is entering the final year of his contract, the Broncos’ asking price might be reasonable to the Browns.
I’m not so sure this is the answer for the Browns at corner, but if we are getting into bargains, this could be the next move. According to his page at pro-football-reference.com, Foxworth hasn’t played corner since 2005, but he is young enough that he could be an impact player for years to come. Plus, he’s British. That’s gotta be worth something, if for no other reason than it would freank Santonio Holmes out.
As reported by the PD’s [very underrated beat reporter] Mary Kay Cabot, Browns TE Kellen Winslow Jr. will not be skipping mandatory team activities this summer and is not positioning himself for a contract showdown with the Browns. Her source? Why, it’s KW2 agent Drew Rosenhaus himself, stressing that OTA’s are optional, a stance he apparently takes with all his clients:
That’s good news, and this morning obviously we can use all the good news we can get.
In the wake of the whole Daven Holly fiasco today, Browns fans can take solace that Shaun Rogers, a player we obtained for Leigh Bodden (who we could kinda use right now) is a happy panda. That is just fantastic, because the knock on this guy in Detroit was that he is capable of playing at a Pro Bowl level when he wants to, it’s just that nobody knows when that is. I hate to borrow from Elle Woods here, but endorphins make you happy, and happy players just play at a Pro Bowl level all the time!
This is good news today, this is very good news. Maybe if we have a more than capable defensive front seven, it won’t matter that my high school football team had more depth at the corner position than the Browns currently have. Continue reading
OK, so as we all know, the Daven Holly situation is just the latest in a long line of issues that the Browns are facing this year at the cornerback position. Leigh Bodden gone, Kenny Wright going off of the reservation. Let’s just say the Browns could have done without Holly possibly missing all of 2008. The good news is, Savage is saying that he was going to go after some more corner help before the injury anyway, and now will almost have to. Contained in that same article, is the bad news:
The general manager said the team has the salary cap room to add a player but is somewhat constricted due to budget.
Is this GM speak for, “we have the money, we just don’t want to spend it?” The article mentions Ty Law (who is garbage) and Lito Sheppard (Yes! Yes! I want him Phil!) as two big ticket names that Savage doubts he will pursue because of the price tag. The article also saying that even if Gary Baxter comes back healthy, he will play saftey. Soooooo one of the worst secondaries in the league last year is going into the 2008 season with Eric Wright (should be good), Brandon McDonald (the “It” guy on the Browns roster), and Jereme Perry (a guy we cut and re-signed this offseason) as the only corners on the roster with NFL experience? To borrow from Seinfeld: