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Getting Caught Up With The Cleveland Browns

August 26, 2011

I know. I haven’t written about the Browns in around 2.5 weeks. It’s pathetic.

(Or is it the opposite of pathetic that I have been too busy to write about the preseason on my moderately read sports blog? Whatever.)

Anyways, a lot has actually happened in the past few weeks and I’m going to tackle them the best way I know how: bullet points.

  • In case you missed it, this commercial happened:

    (Caution: May lead to severe time wasting via YouTube checking out the other athletes’ insults. With absolutely no bias, I can report that Peyton Hillis had the funniest bit.)
  • Oh yeah, that Joe Thomas guy got re-signed. The deal is, well, a big deal. So big, in fact, that it gets its own sub-bullets:
    • Joe Thomas has gone to four Pro-Bowls in a perfect four years. And lets be honest, at this point, he’ll continue to get in on reputation alone as long as he doesn’t ole’ defenders like a matador. He is on his way to becoming a Hall-of-Famer. Hold on, let me bold that: a Hall-of-Famer.
    • It was a 7 year extension worth $84 million, with $44 million guaranteed. Scott Fujita said on twitter that he should treat his team to dinner all week. I don’t think Joe Thomas would mind one bit if he had to hunt and fish enough for 50+ grown men. He’d love the challenge.
    • The quotes Thomas have provided about how he is excited for the direction of the team is all well and good, but as Cleveland Frowns points out, we could simply slap him with the franchise tag. So instead of becoming the highest paid offensive linemen in NFL history, he could have kept getting the average of the current top 5 salaries of left tackles. All while running the risk of playing one year deals.
    • OK fine. I’m still pumped that he thinks we’re going to win a Super Bowl.
    • Joe Thomas is simply the man. And he is a Cleveland Brown until 2014. Smile, Cleveland.
  • For the record, I don’t really care about the preseason. I need to write a Preseason Manifesto. (Even though that is not nearly as pressing as the NFL Draft Strategy Manifesto that Tony and I need to collaborate on [hint: hair, heritage and criminal records are vital components].)
  • Having said that, you can still glean positives and negatives about how a season may go. Just don’t pay any attention to any score or too much attention anything that happens after the first first unit steps off the field.
  • So, through the first two games…
  • Positives
    • Colt McCoy seems to have a total control of the offense. I’m full aware that I wrote the word “seems.” But I’d rather have him seem that way than to seem totally lost.
      • For the first time in as long as I can remember, we seem to be able to hit those quick, simple slants on the third step of a three step drop. (Yes, I’m looking at you in particular Derek and Brady.) The most accurate quarterback in college football history may have found his place in this West Coast offense.
      • He also seems to have a little more zip on the ball this year. He still isn’t rocking a laser, rocket arm by any means but still… more zip. Maybe that shoulder was bugging him more than he let on?
    • Jabaal Sheard and Jayme Mitchell create pressure. People knew more about the beginning of the universe than they did these two. They were basically two complete unknowns – a rookie and a bench warmer acquired for a measly 7th round pick. We still need some depth. But so far, so good.
    • The receivers are getting open. Josh Cribbs looks like he is coming on as a receiver. Rookie Greg Little may have the dropsies in practice, but in the game he looks solid. Jordan Norwood has some great quickness (you just know he had to dominate grade school pick up games as a little tyke).
    • The backup linebackers (Kaluka Maiava, Titus Brown and Brian Smith) are looking surprisingly serviceable.
    • Joe Haden and TJ Ward are playing with a swagger our I have yet to see in our defensive backfield since ’99.
  • Negatives
    • What don’t you understand about Rose Tinted Beer Goggles?
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