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  • Browns facing 5 important free-agent decisions

    Cleveland Browns facing five important free-agent decisions: Tony Grossi analysis

    (Here are my thoughts about Tony Grossi's article:

    Smiley Face = I like the move
    Sad Face = I really hate the move
    Coffee Face = could go either way about the move)

    January 15, 2012
    Tony Grossi, The Plain Dealer The Plain Dealer


    CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Before the Browns can plot their strategy in NFL free agency, which begins on March 13, they have to finalize decisions on their own potential free agents.

    They have five key players who will be unrestricted free agents if they don't re-sign. Here's a look at each and the circumstances that may influence the Browns' decisions.

    Running back Peyton Hillis: Each of the Browns' top decision-makers has repeatedly declined to say he wants Hillis back.

    At his season-ending press conference, coach Pat Shurmur said, "That's one of those questions I really can't answer at this point."

    President Mike Holmgren said at his season-ender, "That's one of our players that is a free agent and we're not going to talk about it today."

    General Manager Tom Heckert said this week on 92.3 FM: "Would we be averse to bringing him back? No. We have to see what else is available and what our plans are for all our free agents."

    Not exactly a ringing endorsement.

    A late spurt by Hillis lifted him to the top of the Browns' rushing list in 2011 with 587 yards and three touchdowns. Injuries and controversy limited him to 10 games.

    Before contract negotiations broke down, the sides were wide apart in their estimation of Hillis' value. Reportedly, Hillis was looking for $10 million in guarantees and the Browns were offering about $4 million.

    Prediction: Hillis leaves.

    Kicker Phil Dawson: Dawson is the only player to receive the franchise tag in the Browns' expansion era. The Browns made this surprise move a year ago when talks for a multiyear deal went nowhere. Dawson signed the one-year deal for $3.25 million.

    If the Browns elect to franchise Dawson again, he would receive a 20 percent pay hike to about $3.9 million. That's a hefty sum for a kicker, even one as reliable as Dawson.

    The more sensible thing would be to resume talks for a multiyear deal, but it doesn't appear to be in the cards. No doubt, Dawson is the franchise's premier player of the expansion era. He recently turned 37 and last year relocated his family to Austin, Texas -- a strong indication he would like to leave in free agency.

    Prediction: Dawson leaves.

    Middle linebacker D'Qwell Jackson: Jackson proved to be a bedrock in the middle of **** Jauron's 4-3 defense, leading the team by plenty in tackles and establishing himself as a locker-room leader. He is the leading contender for the league's comeback player of the year award.

    Heckert has pretty much said Jackson will be back in 2012. The big question is whether they sign him long-term or use the franchise tag on him. If they choose the latter, it wouldn't be available for Dawson.

    Prediction: Jackson returns.

    Cornerback Dimitri Patterson: He didn't have any interceptions and was credited with only 27 tackles, yet Patterson logged a lot of plays in his role as the nickel cornerback covering the slot in three-receiver formations.

    Towards the end, the Browns gave him some reps in Sheldon Brown's cornerback position. It appeared the Browns were testing Patterson as a replacement for Brown. If they liked what they saw, they could proceed with a transition of Brown to free safety.

    Brown will be 33 in March. He is agreeable to moving to free safety, but it is a transition that the team must commit to in the off-season. If they go ahead with it, Patterson or somebody else must move into the starting cornerback spot.

    Patterson will be 29 in June. That means he doesn't have too much time left as a starter. His price tag surely will dictate this move.

    Prediction: Patterson returns.

    Safety Mike Adams: In five seasons with the Browns, Adams played for three head coaches. Each would come to appreciate Adams' versatility on the field and value as a locker-room leader.

    Every year Adams has been with the Browns, he was pegged as a special teamer and backup safety. This year, the Browns signed Usama Young in free agency and drafted Eric Hagg with the expectation of phasing out Adams.

    In fact, Adams, 30, went on to have his finest NFL season in eight campaigns. He made 16 starts for the first time, and posted career highs in tackles and interceptions (three).

    Adams' future with the Browns would appear to be tied to that of Brown. If the Browns intend to move Brown to safety, there would be no room for two safeties over the age of 30. Odds are that Heckert would favor Brown, whom he drafted in Philadelphia and traded for in Cleveland.

    Prediction: Adams leaves.

    LINK
    The Browns are gone; I'm not a fan of the Impostors

    The real Browns are in Baltimore, see?

  • #2
    The Browns need some offense to scare teams.

    If I'm the Browns I trade up to #2 and get RG111. Then I get him weapons.

    When you get a QB alot falls into place and you can build around him and I have never been a McCoy fan. He is a decent back-up

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by bronx_2003 View Post
      The Browns need some offense to scare teams.

      If I'm the Browns I trade up to #2 and get RG111. Then I get him weapons.

      When you get a QB alot falls into place and you can build around him and I have never been a McCoy fan. He is a decent back-up
      If you trade up to #2 to draft somebody, you can't get them weapons because you just traded them away!

      If the Browns draft Griffin, they will not have another winning season for at least another decade. Why? Because the front office has no interest in helping Colt McCoy develop as a QB, so they decide to draft a different quarterback. If the coaching staff isn't willing to work with Colt McCoy what makes Griffin different - NOTHING.

      The Browns need as you called them "weapons" not a quarterback.

      The Browns need an offensive line, wide recievers, a running back, defensive end, linebackers, and defensive backs. They need those positions a hell of a lot more than they need a quarterback.
      The Browns are gone; I'm not a fan of the Impostors

      The real Browns are in Baltimore, see?

      Comment


      • #4
        If I were the Browns I would build an offense around McCoy for now and if he fails still then you have all the pieces in to put another QB in and the other piece would already be there.

        I think they should take Blackmon if he is there when they pick. And then add pieces to the O-line and D-line. Maybe a RB late in the draft, but that is just my out look on them. And I don't know them no where near as deep as I know the Broncos.




        Adopted Broncos:
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        Comment


        • #5
          Griffin is muh more talented than McCoy

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Bernie24 View Post
            Griffin is muh more talented than McCoy
            Maybe, talent only gets you so far.

            No recievers, no offensive line, no running back, and no defense does not an NFL success make.

            Also, coaches that insist that players fit their scheme and not vise versa do not lead to success. Griffin is not a pro-style quarterback. McCoy was forced to take snaps from under center rather than shotgun.

            Same will be with Griffin, but add in the fact that he will have absolutely no help and JaMarcus Russell looks like an NFL success story compared to what Griffin will be.

            Quarterback is nowhere near a need for the Browns. The Browns need an offensive line, running back, wide recievers, and a defense a lot more than they need a quarterback.

            I have sat through a team for the past 12 years that lived by the philosophy that "a quarterback" solves all the problems. The Browns started over and what did they select? They selected a quarterback before addressing the offensive line, recievers, and running back. That ended in a failure. Then, the team decided that if they signed a veteran Pro-Bowl QB everything would be fine. So, in came Jeff Garcia. The offensive line, like before, was ignored. That Pro-Bowl quarterback didn't even finish out the season. Then, he went to the Eagles where he had success in relief of McNabb.

            Then, they decided to draft another quarterback while still insisting on ignoring the offensive line. That quarterback didn't last long either (Frye). Then, comes Quinn and Anderson who were both failures. So, now, they have McCoy and are still ignoring those needs. Still thinking they can have success while ignoring the recievers, offensive line, and running back positions. Your mentality of "address the quarterback" instead of everything else has lead to 12+ years of failure. So, now the team can decide to "start over" again, or they can decide to address the needs that have been ignored for over a decade.
            The Browns are gone; I'm not a fan of the Impostors

            The real Browns are in Baltimore, see?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Bernie24 View Post
              Griffin is muh more talented than McCoy
              THIS

              You ask what the difference is C Brown, RG111 Has Major Talent.

              I like keeping faith with people and working with them but I have never been a McCoy fan. He is too limited IMO.

              I thought the Browns had alot of good draft picks from the Falcons ? Just checked, you have picks at - 4, 22, 37, etc...........

              You could probably trade from 4 to 2 using that #37 pick.

              Then at 22 I would possibly get Alshon Jeffrey and get a couple of good OL in FA to booster the line which is a problem.

              Then you have RG111 and Jeffrey along with Little, Cribbs, etc......... and Hillis, Hardesty to pound the run game.

              You can always draft D in rounds 3,4 and 5.

              I don't follow the Browns like you but speaking from an outside perspective if we played you guys next season and you had the same O and drafted a few pieces on D I would be pretty confident because McCoy would not hurt us.

              If you went in with RG111, Jeffrey, Hillis and a solid OL I would be slightly worried.

              You have a chance to get a franchise QB, Don't blow it !

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Charlie Brown View Post
                Maybe, talent only gets you so far.

                No recievers, no offensive line, no running back, and no defense does not an NFL success make.

                Also, coaches that insist that players fit their scheme and not vise versa do not lead to success. Griffin is not a pro-style quarterback. McCoy was forced to take snaps from under center rather than shotgun.

                Same will be with Griffin, but add in the fact that he will have absolutely no help and JaMarcus Russell looks like an NFL success story compared to what Griffin will be.

                Quarterback is nowhere near a need for the Browns. The Browns need an offensive line, running back, wide recievers, and a defense a lot more than they need a quarterback.

                I have sat through a team for the past 12 years that lived by the philosophy that "a quarterback" solves all the problems. The Browns started over and what did they select? They selected a quarterback before addressing the offensive line, recievers, and running back. That ended in a failure. Then, the team decided that if they signed a veteran Pro-Bowl QB everything would be fine. So, in came Jeff Garcia. The offensive line, like before, was ignored. That Pro-Bowl quarterback didn't even finish out the season. Then, he went to the Eagles where he had success in relief of McNabb.

                Then, they decided to draft another quarterback while still insisting on ignoring the offensive line. That quarterback didn't last long either (Frye). Then, comes Quinn and Anderson who were both failures. So, now, they have McCoy and are still ignoring those needs. Still thinking they can have success while ignoring the recievers, offensive line, and running back positions. Your mentality of "address the quarterback" instead of everything else has lead to 12+ years of failure. So, now the team can decide to "start over" again, or they can decide to address the needs that have been ignored for over a decade.
                The difference is you now have a chance at a franchise QB.

                Frye - Third round pick

                DA - 6th round pick by the Ravens.

                McCoy - Mid Third

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by bronx_2003 View Post
                  You ask what the difference is C Brown, RG111 Has Major Talent.
                  The difference is, bronx, that the Browns are in 2012 now rather than 1999. One would think that the team has learned a lot since 1999. You, though, are under the assumption that the team hasn't learned anything and is perfectly fine with resetting the clock back to 1999.

                  I like keeping faith with people and working with them but I have never been a McCoy fan. He is too limited IMO.

                  I thought the Browns had alot of good draft picks from the Falcons ? Just checked, you have picks at - 4, 22, 37, etc...........

                  You could probably trade from 4 to 2 using that #37 pick.
                  No, not happening. The Browns have too many needs and the team does not find talent in the later rounds, if at all. Trading away the 37th pick means that yet another desperate need is ignored.

                  Then at 22 I would possibly get Alshon Jeffrey and get a couple of good OL in FA to booster the line which is a problem.
                  Good offensive linemen in free agency? Good offensive linemen do not reach free agency because they are resigned by their team. Players that have burned bridges or lack talent are the players that one finds in free agency. You mentality is essentially that the Browns shoudl ignore their needs because the only thing that is important is quarterback. If quarterback was the only thing that any team needed, the Browns, not the Rams, would have won the Super Bowl in 1999 instead of having a 2 win season.

                  Then you have RG111 and Jeffrey along with Little, Cribbs, etc......... and Hillis, Hardesty to pound the run game.

                  You can always draft D in rounds 3,4 and 5.
                  Little has a case of the dropsies. He drops EVERYTHING and Cribbs is not a reciever - he is a special teamer. Sure, he just had his best season as a reciever but his worst season as a special teamer. Cribbs needs to focus on one thing and one thing only. If he wants to be a reciever, then he needs a severe cut to his pay because he isn't worth the money. If he wants to continue to be a special teamer, then he needs to drop this fantasy of being a reciever. Hillis is not going to be a Brown next year and Hurtesty is a bust. Hurtesty should not be on the team next year.

                  I don't follow the Browns like you but speaking from an outside perspective if we played you guys next season and you had the same O and drafted a few pieces on D I would be pretty confident because McCoy would not hurt us.
                  That is your opinion as a Broncos fan. Imagine playing a Browns team whose defense rivals that of Pittsburgh or Baltimore. You wouldn't be worried about McCoy, sure, but your offense wouldn't be moving the ball. McCoy wouldn't have to be Aaron Rodgers to win a game - all he'd have to be is Trent Dilfer.

                  If you went in with RG111, Jeffrey, Hillis and a solid OL I would be slightly worried.

                  You have a chance to get a franchise QB, Don't blow it !
                  Correction, you mean if the Browns went in with RGIII, Little (Jeffery wouldn't be there because the Browns traded up to spots in the draft and gave up the opportunity to draft a top reciever like Jeffery), a scrub running back, and a poor offensive line. Nobody would be worried, in fact, RGIII would win the game for you because of his inability to throw a completion, his lack of protection from the offensive line, and his lack of a running game. That equals a struggling quarterback. That equals single digit touchdowns and double digit turnovers.

                  The Browns draft Griffin I guarantee you that he throws no more than 5 touchdown passes in a season, finishes the season with less than 50% completions, throws at least 18 interceptions, and fumbles the ball a dozen times.

                  Originally posted by bronx_2003 View Post
                  The difference is you now have a chance at a franchise QB.

                  Frye - Third round pick

                  DA - 6th round pick by the Ravens.

                  McCoy - Mid Third
                  What you do not understand is that now the Browns are back in 1999. A dozen years have gone by, yet, the team has pulled a complete 360 turn. That is, the team has meandered around, and ended up right back where they began! So, now the question is, does the team make the same exact move they made in 1999, drafting a first round quarterback while ignoring desperate needs, or will they finally turn from that path.

                  Twelve years of failure is a long time, but it certainly beats 25 years of failure. The Browns draft Griffin and the team won't compete for at least another decade.
                  The Browns are gone; I'm not a fan of the Impostors

                  The real Browns are in Baltimore, see?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    If you have the chance of getting a franchise QB you take it, otherwise Thomas is blocking for no one again.

                    In my scenario you could get Jeffrey at 22.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by bronx_2003 View Post
                      If you have the chance of getting a franchise QB you take it, otherwise Thomas is blocking for no one again.

                      In my scenario you could get Jeffrey at 22.
                      So, under your belief then the Colts should have just drafted a quarterback when they had Marvin Harrison when the top QB was Heath Shuler. Manning would not have been a Colt. Just imagine, if they had drafted Heath Shuler they would have had a QB to have throw for them.

                      That is all that is important, right? Drafting a quarterback to say that you drafted a quarterback that way you can say "hey, at least we have a quarterback!"

                      That is extremely stupid. Look at the Colts draft, they didn't say "let's draft a quarterback because, well, we need one". They said, let's draft all these pieces to the puzzle to see if our QB will do better. Then, when he didn't do better with those new players, they drafted Peyton Manning.

                      Here is what the Colts did in the draft (starting in 1994):

                      1994(a): Marshall Faulk, RB
                      1994(b): Trev Alberts, LB
                      1995: Ellis Johnson, DT
                      1996: Marvin Harrison, WR
                      1997: Tarik Glenn, OT
                      1998: Peyton Manning, QB

                      Do you know who the Colts QB was? Jim Harbaugh! He never played a full season for the team during that span. In 1994 he started 9 games, '95 he started 12, '96 he played in 14 games, then in '97 he played in 11. Instead of drafting Faulk in '94 they could have selected Heath Shuler. He was the third overall pick that year, one spot after the Colts selected Faulk. They could have drafted Trent Dilfer as well. But, they chose NOT to. In 1995 they could have selected Todd Collins, Kordell Stewart, or make a trade in hopes of getting Steve McNair or Kerry Collins. But, they did not. In 1996 they could have drafted Tony Banks. But, they chose not to. Then, in 1997 instead of Tarik Glenn they could have selected Jim Druckenmiller or Jake Plummer. But, they chose not to. They decided to stick with Harbaugh and add in those players around him hoping that his play would improve and that he would stay healthy.

                      He didn't so in 1998 they decided to take a quarterback and the choice was between Ryan Leaf and Peyton Manning. Using your reasoning, they would have selected Heath Shuler and then in '98 everything would be different and they would not be going after Manning because they were instead trying to build around their "Franchise QB Heath Shuler".

                      The Browns need to add players around McCoy that way his play improves and the team begins to do well. It'd be really crappy for the Browns to decide to give up on McCoy and draft Griffin and watch McCoy go to the Raiders or some other team and win a Super Bowl while the Browns are stuck in perpetual "rebuilding mode" with Griffin or whomever the next quarterback is they decide to go after when Griffin fails.
                      Last edited by Charlie Brown; 01-16-2012, 12:55 PM.
                      The Browns are gone; I'm not a fan of the Impostors

                      The real Browns are in Baltimore, see?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Charlie Brown View Post
                        So, under your belief then the Colts should have just drafted a quarterback when they had Marvin Harrison when the top QB was Heath Shuler. Manning would not have been a Colt. Just imagine, if they had drafted Heath Shuler they would have had a QB to have throw for them.

                        That is all that is important, right? Drafting a quarterback to say that you drafted a quarterback that way you can say "hey, at least we have a quarterback!"

                        That is extremely stupid. Look at the Colts draft, they didn't say "let's draft a quarterback because, well, we need one". They said, let's draft all these pieces to the puzzle to see if our QB will do better. Then, when he didn't do better with those new players, they drafted Peyton Manning.

                        Here is what the Colts did in the draft (starting in 1994):

                        1994(a): Marshall Faulk, RB
                        1994(b): Trev Alberts, LB
                        1995: Ellis Johnson, DT
                        1996: Marvin Harrison, WR
                        1997: Tarik Glenn, OT
                        1998: Peyton Manning, QB

                        Do you know who the Colts QB was? Jim Harbaugh! He never played a full season for the team during that span. In 1994 he started 9 games, '95 he started 12, '96 he played in 14 games, then in '97 he played in 11. Instead of drafting Faulk in '94 they could have selected Heath Shuler. He was the third overall pick that year, one spot after the Colts selected Faulk. They could have drafted Trent Dilfer as well. But, they chose NOT to. In 1995 they could have selected Todd Collins, Kordell Stewart, or make a trade in hopes of getting Steve McNair or Kerry Collins. But, they did not. In 1996 they could have drafted Tony Banks. But, they chose not to. Then, in 1997 instead of Tarik Glenn they could have selected Jim Druckenmiller or Jake Plummer. But, they chose not to. They decided to stick with Harbaugh and add in those players around him hoping that his play would improve and that he would stay healthy.

                        He didn't so in 1998 they decided to take a quarterback and the choice was between Ryan Leaf and Peyton Manning. Using your reasoning, they would have selected Heath Shuler and then in '98 everything would be different and they would not be going after Manning because they were instead trying to build around their "Franchise QB Heath Shuler".

                        The Browns need to add players around McCoy that way his play improves and the team begins to do well. It'd be really crappy for the Browns to decide to give up on McCoy and draft Griffin and watch McCoy go to the Raiders or some other team and win a Super Bowl while the Browns are stuck in perpetual "rebuilding mode" with Griffin or whomever the next quarterback is they decide to go after when Griffin fails.
                        You sort of proved my point, The Colts kept drafting other positions but it made little difference UNTIL they got Manning. If Manning was available 5 years earlier they would of took him and drafted around him.

                        You don't know when the Browns will get a chance at a franchise QB, You have a chance now and need to take him IMO.

                        In recent years the Lions and Falcons had plenty of needs when Stafford and Ryan came around but they made the right choice to get winning again.

                        The Falcons had the choice between Ryan and Dorsey, I guess you would of had Dorsey.

                        I guess the difference between us is that you believe McCoy can be a very good starter, I don't

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If the browns traded up to get RG3 he will have the same mess as McCoy. Best thing for them is to draft offense with there picks. I would also look to bring in someone to challenge McCoy for the job. The browns have no weapons. The defense is pretty good but the offense is trash. Build up a decent team and then bring in the QB. Don't keep drafting QBs into a crap situation.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by shawinkerpoppin View Post
                            If the browns traded up to get RG3 he will have the same mess as McCoy. Best thing for them is to draft offense with there picks. I would also look to bring in someone to challenge McCoy for the job. The browns have no weapons. The defense is pretty good but the offense is trash. Build up a decent team and then bring in the QB. Don't keep drafting QBs into a crap situation.
                            The Browns will trade up for RG111, Book it !

                            I thought McCoy was a back-up in college and coming into the draft, nothing has changed my view of that and if they waste time with him that will be a huge error IMO.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by bronx_2003 View Post
                              The Browns will trade up for RG111, Book it !

                              I thought McCoy was a back-up in college and coming into the draft, nothing has changed my view of that and if they waste time with him that will be a huge error IMO.
                              I hope for his sake they dont. I really would like to see him in Washington but I doubt he gets that far in the draft.

                              Comment

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