TANK THIS: UnderDawgs spike Vikes in Minny

by Cleveland Frowns on September 23, 2013

“The local press seems to think that we’d save everyone the time and trouble if we just went out and shot ourselves. Me, I’m for wasting sportswriters’ time. So I figured we ought to hang around for a while and see if we can give ‘em all a nice big sh*tburger to eat.”Champion Cleveland Indians Manager Lou Brown

—————

If you need to get something done in this town, you can do worse than by calling in an Ignatius man. An impossible nineteen starting quarterbacks for the Cleveland Browns since 1999, and Brian Hoyer (’04) is only the second one to win in his first game taking the snaps.

Man for Others

Yes, he made a pair of especially terrible throws, but after his first half Joe Montana act, a thinking man’s Charlie Frye was good enough for a 31-27 win in Minnesota that marked the best Browns gameday by far since 2010. Sound the trumpets. Today is Victory Monday.

More on Hoyer below, but how about the whole damn team? The players and coaching staff pulling together for a road win with a career third-string quarterback making just his second NFL start, seven-point underdogs and a roaring national punchline after a week as tumultuous as an NFL locker room will have apart from suffering the loss of a human life.

Some folks pointed out last week, in the wake of the historic Trent Richardson trade and the decision to start Hoyer over presumptive second-stringer Jason Campbell, that the physical nature of the game of football makes it impossible to really “tank” a season for a top draft pick in the way that, say, a basketball team can. And beyond the physical, what kind of toll would it take on an NFL organization’s culture if the coaching staff and players weren’t always fully engaged in an effort to win games, no matter what the perceptions of the front office’s objectives. Yesterday’s game made it especially easy to see that there’s a big difference between quitting and punting. Sometimes, plenty of times, punting is exactly the right thing to do.

Like with the front office’s decision to punt on the Holmgren regime’s idea that Brandon Weeden could be a starting quarterback for an NFL contender. Brian Hoyer didn’t just lead the Browns to a win yesterday with a game winning two-minute 55-yard touchdown drive on his team’s last possession. He also helped show how replaceable Weeden is, and how refreshing it can be when a quarterback consistently manages to get the ball out of his hands on time. At this point, there’s no reason to view the front office’s master plan as anything but good, if not perfect, sense, per what Joe Banner said himself after the draft last April:

(On if the plan all along was to improve the defense in free agency and the draft)- “Yeah, to a degree. We were trying to focus on making sure we got players that we thought made us better. I think the difference is on offense we think we have a lot of young guys who are not quite sure what they are going to be over time. So we were inclined to give them some time and see how they develop and then we’ll be able to identify where we’re at. On defense, we felt it was clear to identify what talent was out there, what talent we had, match it up with the philosophy we’ve been talking about and make some moves that will make the team better. It was a little bit of both.”

So, sure. As wholly illegitimate and perfectly loathsome as the Holmgren regime was, it wouldn’t have made any sense for Banner and Co. to just burn the whole thing down once they got here. Save some cap space and roster flexibility, and give your staff a chance to take the kids through a training camp, see what they look like on game day first.

And all the better if at the same time you can take decisive action to create a legitimate strength. Again, it’s been more than a full decade that the Browns have played without more than two players at the same time who would even get snaps in the Ravens or Steelers front seven. Now the defensive front is legitimately dominant. Jabaal Sheard and John Hughes blowing up the Vikings backfield all day like Pro Bowlers. Mingo eating all of the babies. A first ballot Hall of Fame running back in his prime was kept fully in check (just 88 yards on 25 carries for Adrian Peterson, who didn’t have a run longer than 9 yards).

Maybe the Browns don’t win another game this season, but after yesterday that seems doubtful (thanks in no small part to the return of the electrifying Josh Gordon, as well). And it might even be safe to say that they’ll play watchable football with some measure of consistency through December. As in 2010, a sensible long-term plan that’s at least somewhat discernible only enhances the watchability here, and this — by any measure dating back to 2011, at least — is progress. It’s getting harder not to see a 2014 surge on the horizon, and the roster should be comparable to if not much more complete than the one that Andrew Luck joined in 2012.

Stock your pantries, hang on to your gasmasks, and check the fine print on your rebate plans because Cleveland Browns football is on the up.

  • spencer096

    /gratuitous barking

    • Wiseoldredbeard

      When it comes to a W, there is no such thing as gratuitous barking.

  • Wiseoldredbeard

    I love everything about this, particularly the shit burgers. Man, yesterday was a great day to be a Cleveland fan. I haven’t felt that way in what seems like an eternity. How bout those Indians?!?!

    I’m drooling at the potential for our front seven. We need a nickname, stat. Who’s got something?

    • Shadow_play

      The Magnificent Seven is too obvious, but right now it’s pretty appropriate.

      • acto

        Go with the original, “The Seven Samurai”. Although I have never been able to stay awake through any of Kurosawa’s stuff. “Ran” was seven years of my life that I shall never recover.

        • Zarathustra

          We have a winner!!!. All the likes to the seven samurai. You are most right about Kurosawa. He’s a bit overrated. But Ikiru is pretty damn great.

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1kbBmlAvdI PML

          As usual, Go with the Asian stuff

        • Cranky M

          This is sheer crazy talk. Ran is one of my favorite movies of all time.

          • acto

            Please excuse my thread hijack….
            Sorry Cranky, but I keep thinking about this post. What other movies do you like?
            I am the dummest guy I know, perhaps I did not understand “Ran”.
            How do you feel about my three favorite movies, “Casablanca”, “Citizen Kain”, (I am fascinated by both Orson Welles and especially William Randolph Hearst) and “Gidget Goes Hawaiian”?

    • Beeej

      1. All Dawgs Go to 7.
      2. Magnificent 7
      3. Front 7…Up yours.
      4. Super Fun Time Happy Joy Joy Squad brought to you by NesCafe
      5. 7 minute abs
      6. 7 deadly…something or other that rhymes with “sins,” but not “wins” even though 7 wins would be a big step up for us.
      7. 7 Wonders of Euclid and 3rd.

      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1kbBmlAvdI PML

        Number 4, obviously

    • Wiseoldredbeard

      The Kennel? The Dawg Pack? The Wild Dawgs? I don’t know. But I envision Horton on third and nine sending the message into DQ’s helmet: “release the hounds!”

      • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

        Hounds of Hell

        • Wiseoldredbeard

          Like infinity.

      • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

        Hounds of Hell

      • bupalos

        Yeah, if they want to do those stupid 3rd down audio things, Simpson’s Mr. Burns saying “release the hounds” would be top of my list.

      • Beeej

        Bloodhound Gang? I don’t think the new “family friendly” stadium experience would like the word “hell.”

    • McSlain

      The First Energy Power Outage

    • alexb

      I share your enthusiasm for our interior. Edges not so sure. Mingo is a blue chip though, he’s still a rookie but I see 15 sack seasons in his future. Sheard looks good, but he may be hurt now. Kruger not so sure though. He gets close when the qb holds the ball cause he bulls real well. Justin Smith and JJ Watt bull real well too but they also realized they need a repertoire of moves. Kruger hasn’t shown anything besides a bull. When he does go to the outside he can’t carve off the edge, he edge rushes WAYYY to high which makes it easy for the tackle to push him out wide. Sheard isn’t much faster around the edge but he has some inside moves which he keeps OT’s honest with. Right now I would start Mingo and Sheard. Kruger is holding up the run well enough though so I’ll give him credit for that, but not 8m/yr credit

    • nj0

      The Gozerians. That allows us to say things like – many Shubs and Zulls knew what it was to be roasted in the depths of the Sloar that day I can tell you.

      • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

        This is an awesome nickname.

      • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

        I’m 12 what is this?

        • Dan

          Ghostbuster!!!

          • Dan

            Fun fact about the movie: Dan Akroyd would secretly put bricks in Bill Murray’s backpack for filming because he thought Bill was funnier when he was annoyed.

            Oh and also Go Browns!!!

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            Ah right thanks. And yes go Browns.

    • McSlain

      Cleveland Frackers!

      • bupalos

        No.

        • Wiseoldredbeard

          Bup – so touchy.

  • p_forever

    this seals the deal re: where owie will one day attend high school, for sure.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1kbBmlAvdI PML

    Arsenio Hall is back on TV and the Browns have a beast front 7. Dog my cats and rowrbrazzle, what decade are we in?

  • jamick6000

    browns can’t even tank properly

  • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

    >>>“We were trying to focus on making sure we got players that we thought made us better.”>>>

    “Oh shit,” says dwightclarkbutchdavisphilsavageericmanginitomheckert, “if only we’d remembered to focus on ‘making sure to get players we thought made us better,’ everything would have worked out differently!”


    Lookit, I get that we don’t have a choice other than to bag your fandom. 50 years investment is not easily cast aside. But this regime has been the worst and is being treated like the best.

    We might want to check the gung-ho-ness until after the Bengals next weekend.

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      Where is the evidence for your claim that this regime has been the worst? That you’d completely isolate that particular sentence of Banner’s from its context suggests that you don’t have very much, if any.

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      And what could possibly happen vs. the Bengals next week that would change the fact that there’s a sensible long-term plan that’s at least somewhat discernible? Nothing, methinks. Methinks you should relax.

      • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

        a very long term plan indeed. open-ended and infinite plan. obviously you know where i’m at on this…
        /cuts next 500 words.
        /yer wekkum.

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          ??? There’s evidence here for my conclusions, as noted in the above post. You’ve addressed precisely none of it, while presenting zero evidence for your own conclusions.

          • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

            Guy, I’ve got 10 or 20 thousand words on the subject filed in the category “Browns punt 2013″ here: http://jimkanicki.wordpress.com/category/browns/browns-punt-2013/

            I doubt you want to go that deep and I doubt minds will be changed anyway. If the curious seek a counterpoint, there it be.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            ??? I’ve read all those posts. I don’t find them persuasive, for the reasons stated above. The fact that you can’t manage to summarize your argument here in response to the above is telling.

          • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

            if you weren’t persuaded then you won’t be persuaded now. the only tell is that i can’t dig into now.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            Nobody’s asking you to dig. Still waiting for a summary of an argument that makes sense. If you had one, it wouldn’t be hard to summarize.

          • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

            No, it is hard because everything needs to be fact checked because i’d call it about 20 to one against my point of view right now and thus i get (correctly) called out on citing Tannehill instead Freeman even though my point of the beneficial aspect of Keenan Lewis remains intact, now those inclined to disagree have a shiny object to play with. They then no longer have to confront the fact of Lewis matchups against these three:
            * JJones, 7rec/76yds/1TD/1fumble
            * VJax, 5/77/0TDs
            * LFitz, 5/64/0TDs.
            demonstrate a positive effect.

            So there: I just went off and researched and demonstrated that last year’s 31st pass defense held JJones/VJax/LFitz to one TD in three games and they averaged about 70yds. this year with KLewis has the only significant add to the starting defense.

            An argumentative type would (and will) come back to me for a fucking breakdown of the proportion of matchups where Lewis was on the receiver; if I provide that, same person will want to know the blitz package, nickel-dime, who’s the QB, time in the game, etc.

            In other words, research means little to people who choose are pre-disposed to disagree with my thesis. I doubt you’ll come back to me with, “Damn Kanick, you’re right, looks like Lewis is a difference maker and the Saints were smart to sign him. I wish Banner had explored that path instead throwing everything at SixStarts Kruger.”

            So why not just call it day and besides I’m leaning toward OSU-Wisc for the all-play this week and we can just essay the hell out of Browns-Bengals.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            “Damn Kanick, you’re right, looks like Lewis is a difference maker …”

            Whom exactly are you muttering about? Like anyone here ever even suggested that Lewis isn’t a good football player?

            So nobody should have any trust in Banner and Lombardi because they didn’t land every one of the top free agents available this offseason, and because in Banner and Lombardi’s first offseason with the franchise, they weren’t able to make the Browns as good as the Saints.

            It’s really not that hard to summarize your argument. It’s just hard to agree with it.

          • BIKI024

            how do you know that Keenan Lewis didn’t have the Browns on his list of teams he told his agent he didn’t want to play for?? it doesn’t seem like he was after money, 5 year $26.3m with $10m up front is not bad at all. maybe he wanted out of the division?

            Banner has proven he has overpaid for DB talent (Namde) and while he was a paid a ton more than Keenan, maybe that experience as well as the evolution of the game these past few years has lowered their perceived value of DB’s.

            obviously they feel that fortifying the front 7 can give you flexibility on the investment on the back end, and so far it has proven to be true. while our 3rd down defense is a work in progress, overall our pass defense is playing pretty well, allowing only 6.3 yards per attempt, 8th best in the NFL, up from 6.9 last year.

          • acto

            Just ignore Frownie jk,
            Those dam attorneys want “evidence”, “conclusions”, “premises” and I even thought I heard one mention that I had an “incoherent syllogism”. That is impossible, I have no clue how much gin to put in an “incoherent syllogism”.

      • jamick6000

        get a bunch of draft picks and hope that this will allow you to obtain some imaginary franchise QB = sensible long-term plan??

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          Make a surface evaluation of what you know and what you don’t about the assets you’ve inherited. Act on what’s easy to know on the surface (like for instance that you have little to no useful talent in the front seven, and that you almost certainly don’t have a legitimate starting quarterback), then give your coaching staff a reasonable amount of time to assess the rest, until the unknown becomes more known (like that you definitely definitely don’t have a legitimate starting quarterback, and that your predecessors probably overpaid for last year’s first round running back). Then act on what’s newly knowable the best way you can, like when a team like the Colts potentially overreacts to a perceived need at running back, and wants to give you something (like a first round draft pick … those are good to have!) for a running back that you’d be glad to get.

          I don’t see how anyone could have a legitimate problem with this so early into the new regime’s tenure.

          • acto

            Good job Frownie! I wonder if they can get anything of value for Montottawa Hardesty?

          • jamick6000

            “… your predecessors probably overpaid for last year’s first round running back”
            — they must be pretty sharp to be able to determine this after a year when Richardson had broken ribs + 2 games.

            I’m fine with getting rid of Weeden, but trading Richardson was a mistake.

          • Cranky M

            If his name wasn’t Trent Richardson, you would be overjoyed to get a 1st-round pick for a RB who has averaged less than 4 yards per carry. Just because he was drafted (way too) high doesn’t necessarily mean that he is, or ever will be, good.
            He’s a slow, oft-injured RB with an apparent attitude problem, in a league where RB is becoming increasingly obsolete, and they got a 1st-round pick for him. I fail to see how that’s a mistake. The word “steal” jumps to mind more readily.

          • jamick6000

            But he *is* Trent Richardson and pretending like the only thing you have to evaluate him on is 1 year when he was playing with broken ribs is ridiculous.

            The reason people are judging him by 2012 only is because they are putting on the blinders and seeing what they want to see.

          • bupalos

            He isn’t slow. That’s not the problem at all. He just doesn’t have an NFL relationship to NFL holes. He looks a little slow because he tries to run as if he’s faster than the defense, and as if he can pause and take time to deal with each tackler before proceeding.

            I still love the cuts he makes after he is in the hole in the middle of the field. But that, and struggling out the extra yard, is the entirety of his skillset. He’ll turn some well-blocked 7 yarders into 22s in his career but I can’t see him having anything like the impact you would expect from a first rounder, let alone a top 5 pick.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            “trading Richardson was a mistake.”

            Maybe, but I can’t imagine how or why you’d feel so strongly about it either way.

          • jamick6000

            im just a passionate person

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            So what is it about Trent Richardson that makes you so passionate about him?

          • acto

            “– they must be pretty sharp to be able to determine this after a year when Richardson had broken ribs + 2 games.”
            You are arguing against yourself 6000!
            Running backs get hurt. Richardson has been injured and he has been tentative when hitting the gaps. (He had one very overrated and over exposed, fairly good play against Philadelphia).
            The Browns gave up way too much to get the 4th best running back in the draft.
            Getting a 1st round pick for an often injured, marginal running back with an attitude problem was a great deal.
            Did I mention that running backs get hurt frequently and have short careers?
            I think TRich may have some success with the Colts, but he was only going to get beaten up running behind the Browns current Guards.
            TRich may beat the odds and be starting in four years. However, I am certain he shall be starting his career in the real world within 4 years.

          • jamick6000

            “an often injured, marginal running back with an attitude problem”

            again, you’re making this sweeping judgement based on 1 injury, 1 season. The attitude problem is something you’re just making up. Seeing what you want to see so that you can feel positive.

            As far as what we got for him — a low first round draft pick and the vague hope that this will translate into some imaginary franchise QB — not impressed.

            I remember the last time we had 2 first rounders and it didn’t change the franchise. The point is to turn picks into good players. In that regard, Banner and Lombardi’s track record is very bad.

          • McSlain

            It did change the franchise. The inability of Holmgren to secure Luck or RGIII got him an exit from the cushy desk job he never should have had. And only Holmgren is stupid enough to brag about his failure on securing Luck, as if it is a feather in his cap. To say the franchise did not change is not even remotely true. How much more change can you get then a total regime change?

          • jamick6000

            “To say the franchise did not change is not even remotely true.”

            2009: 5-11
            2010: 5-11
            2011: 4-12
            2012: 5-11

            you are missing the forest for the trees

          • acto

            6000, I am sorry if I am being too combative, I do respect your opinion.

            “I remember the last time we had 2 first rounders and it didn’t change the franchise.”

            You may be arguing against yourself again.
            Those two first rounders were Trich and Weeden. I was pushing for Claiborne and either Martin, or Wilson.
            And, I absolutely despise the term “Franchise Quarterback”. The Browns will end up next year with approximately pick 6 and pick 16. I do not want them to draft a Quarterback with either pick.

          • bupalos

            >>> I do not want them to draft a Quarterback with either pick.>>>

            You are hardcore, Acto.

          • acto

            6000, sorry to pile on, but TRich has a horrible reputation with a variety of people close to the Browns. I am not making up the attitude problem, a buddy of mine rather close to the action frequently made excuses for him, but she ended up calling him, “Nancy” or “Bitchardson” rather quickly.
            (Please note, I used the term “Nancy” to illustrate what I had heard said, I do not endorse the ridicule of transgendered, gay or otherwise differently oriented people. I mean no offence to anyone. Well…. except perhaps TRich.)

          • jamick6000

            whatever., the bottom line is we’ll see how richardson’s career goes (probably well) and we’ll see what the browns do with the ~24th pick this draft (Banner and Lombardi have a terrible track record on talent evaluation) and we’ll see how the rest of the year goes (bad)

    • jamick6000

      we’ll know a lot more after Cincinnati. they’ll be ready for the gimmick plays and they have a real defense.

      • cscales

        can’t wait to see your comments if they take down the bengals !!!

      • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

        And what could possibly happen vs. the Bengals next week that would change the fact that there’s a sensible long-term plan that’s at least somewhat discernible? Nothing, methinks. Methinks you should relax.

        • vespo09

          +1 for repeat

        • jamick6000

          1 win against a winless, bad football team, suddenly everything is on the Right Track?

          Perhaps it is you, who should relax

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            I hope things are on the right track, but the point here is that there’s no good reason to be sure they’re on the wrong track. That’s progress, however small.

      • eldaveablo

        So…

    • spencer096

      this regime has not been that bad aside from stashing some draft picks, not using cap space and everything PR related.

      if anything, so far, they’ve proven to be one of the better ones…defense looks better than jauron’s, front 7 is very nice. mr. mugshot is a BEAST…and watch his celebration at the end of yesterday’s game after the sack, that was F-ING GREAT.

      it’s too early to indict em…and yes, i know it’d be great to turn up the hate heat on such loathsome creatures as lombardi and banner, but lets just be a lil patient.

    • Wiseoldredbeard

      You can complain about the new regime all you want (there’s definitely a basis to do so), but to say that this regime is worse than Holmgren’s — who you may recall hired Pat Shurmur as the head coach (completely blowing arguably the most important decision for any new regime) — is insane. I mean, need I remind you of the hand-off to Alex Smith?

      • Wiseoldredbeard

        Meanwhile, Kanicki, I’ll take your non-response to this bullet-proof argument as an acknowledgment that you agree. I mean, really, Alex Smith?!?

        • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

          sorry WORB, just take my non-response as having bitten off maybe too much and just unable to respond to all the jabs in a timely way. probably won’t catch them all, but here:

          my basis for worst ever is centered on deliberately trying not to be the best team you can be. we can look back at mistakes of savage and heckert, but at least they were trying. was brady quinn a mistake? of course. but it was a mistake in the service of trying to win.

          letting cap evaporate trading out of draft, drafting non-starters, signing redundant free agents, not signing FAs at positions of need taken as a whole equals not trying to win this year. and there remains a very good chance that this will fail and so they will have failed in the service of not trying which i think is the worst route possible.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            “my basis for worst ever is centered on deliberately trying not to be the best team you can be.”

            It’s a rather outrageous proposition on its face, that these guys with such massive egos wouldn’t be trying their hardest to win. And you haven’t supported it with persuasive evidence.

            “letting cap evaporate trading out of draft, drafting non-starters, signing redundant free agents, not signing FAs at positions of need.”

            These are things that perennial Super Bowl contenders do on a regular basis, leaving aside the value judgment you make in “redundant” (which itself looks badly off given the dominance of the front seven which you keep trying to say is so loaded with “redundancies”).

            Your failure to even acknowledge, let alone account for the issues of diminishing returns and opportunity costs in using all available cap space in a new regime’s first year, on behalf of an organization that was so obviously a certain distance away from being a legitimate Super Bowl contender, makes your analysis almost completely worthless. It comes off like you’re just spewing venom. A lot of people who generally really like your stuff have tried to tell you this, in many different ways.

          • Wiseoldredbeard

            Kanicki – I hear you, I really do. I just don’t agree. By your analysis, you should never trade away a player that is only slightly better than his replacement, but costs ten times more, for a draft pick. You have to keep in mind that the money saved and the pick can be used to upgrade another, potentially way more important position. Trading away that player for a pick doesn’t mean that you’re deliberately not trying as hard as you can to win, it means you have a vision for how you can use the assets that you have to improve. Haven’t you ever noticed how every successful team in the NFL does this? To win in the league you gotta be thinking three years in advance. Or, at least two.

            Picking Weeden and Richardson with those two first rounders wasn’t even thinking one year in advance. It was wasteful, self-serving, and further evidence that Holmgren’s regime was, without a doubt, the WORST EVER. EVER. EVER. EVER. EVER. EVER. Not to mention him basically stealing money from the city (via Lerner).

    • nj0

      What makes them the worst regime? Not spending salary cap moolah this year?

      • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

        There’s the ‘not spending’ (and not drafting) and there’s also what they spent on: 3 pass rush FAs followed by drafting a pass rusher?

        For another way to go, check the Saints.

        NO Saints pass defense rank in 2012: 31st.
        NO Saints pass defense rank through three games (Ryan, Tannehill, Palmer): 5th.

        The ONLY change in personnel was Keenan Lewis. (Wait, they signed Parys Harrelson to a 1 year contact.) (Goes to show you how stupid they are because Joe Banner will tell you that one year contracts are stupid.)

        So anyways… while the rest of Cleveland wants to give these guys a tongue bath, other teams do the old fashioned ‘see hole, plug hole’ thing with good effect.

        I can’t un-see how Berea ignored so many easy ways to field a more competitive team this year. Heckert left them in great shape and though not perfect, they were in year 3 of a 3 year plan. Wouldve have been nice to see it play out. But instead, we’re rebooting.

        I don’t think any other prior regime had a team as close and decided to blow it up. While at the same time crowing about new cafeterias and office murals and analytics and fan experience and social media and ‘see don’t we get it?’ PR maneuvering.

        Theyre.. just.. so.. transparently.. manipulative.. of the media, fans, players, everything. Worse than any other group.

        While winning with fake punts and field goals is fun, excuse me if I’m not going to buy in to Joe Banner’s program.

        • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

          –self redacted–

        • nj0

          You’ve done more on this than I have, so I guess I’ll just go with the “agree to disagree”. I completely agree with you that not addressing holes was an issue, but disagree on criticism over adding three pass rushers. You can never have enough of those and having depth means always being fresh even later in the game.

          I personally don’t feel we were as close as you seem to. And I don’t see how we blew everything up. They’ve pretty much stood pat with the offensive talent bequeathed to them until they finally decided TR wasn’t all that and got a 1st rounder out of him. For all the rumors, there hasn’t been the supposed fire sale and, even if there was, which player has shown enough to be untradeable? Maybe Gordon but I could see even moving him considering his off-field issues.

          I think I agree with you that rushing to crown these guys kings is a bit much, but I think burying them after not even a month is pretty short sighted too. It’s overly critical to completely discount a win on the road, without your starting QB, and where the whole team played hard during a drama-filled week.

          I mean, I’ve seen so much worse management over the past ten odd years by these other regimes that I just don’t get the extent of your Banner hate.

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          Uh, the Saints had significantly fewer question marks than the Browns did going into the season, did they not? They also have a HOF QB, and a potential HOF head coach who’s been with the team for years, each of which has won Super Bowls. The fact that your first go-to here is to compare the Browns regime, in its first season, to the Saints, is fairly bonkers.

          Again, the first season for this Browns regime. It only makes sense for them to engage in a process to evaluate what you have before making significant moves. You are holding them to a standard that is just insane.

          • CLEVTA

            Dont mean to butt in but just for sake of accurate information. Saints haven’t faced Tannehill yet, it was Josh Freeman. Also, they did add a Safety in rd1 w Kenny Vaccaro so they did use the draft to improve. Browns have a better pass defense right now than the Saints using the most correlated def pass stat yds/attempt metric (5.7 v 5.8), good for 6th in the NFL. I totally agree with Frowns here. It’s much easier to use FA to add pieces and fill holes when you have a HOF QB on board. Actually it makes pretty much everything easier when you have that. Btw the CB that many Browns fans wanted at 6, Dee Miliner, has already been benched by the Jets and has been torched beyond belief early in the season. I won’t sit here and say I wish they had a more competent #2 CB but who is to say they didn’t try and go outbid for guys. I do recall them being rumored to be after Brent Grimes when he settled on Miami. At some point there’s major diminishing returns when you start reaching and way overpaying for DBs, especially a #2. With 3 picks in the top 40 (?) presumably, they can get their QB, WR and CB or S. Also by holding onto their wallets they now have the ability to wisely spend on less holes than this prior off season with so many picks. I feel like I’m a fairly reasonable fan and can see the big picture and have no problems giving this regime a chance. Lets see if they decide to spend on FAs this offseason before we skewer them. Let them fail first before running them out of town, that’s all.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            At some point there’s major diminishing returns when you start reaching and … “

            Yes yes yes this whole thing. Why is this hard? Jim, you know as well as anyone that (right or wrong!) I’m itching for reasons to hate these guys. I just can’t do it honestly here.

          • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

            sorry but the saints were 31st with the HOF QB last year. not getting the correlation between QB here. and while you’re (TA) right about vaccaro being drafted, he’s not starting, that’s why i overlooked him.

            still, i think youre both missing my point: the saints went from 31st to 5th and it’s primarlly if not all due to adding keenan lewis. they didnt add 4 pass rushers; they dont have 50% of their cap tied up in their d-front. they saw a hole and fixed it in FA.

            i really don’t know why something so simple becomes so complicated:
            DO: get an OLB and CB2 and FS in free agency or draft;

            DO NOT: install an entirely new defense that requires a new set of expensive personnel not currently on your roster.

            “He can take his’n and beat your’n and take your’n and beat his’n.”
            –things Bum Phillips never said about Joe Banner.

          • nj0

            The Saints haven’t exactly played the toughest opposition and, I’m guessing, their offense hasn’t turned over the ball as much as ours has.

            Not saying they aren’t better, though I think it’s too early in the year to make assumptions about the caliber of either team’s defense.

            Also, if we stayed with our old defensive scheme wouldn’t we still have needed to spend money on personnel not currently on our roster?

          • Zarathustra

            Your primary criticism of banner/Lombardi is that they are too stubborn to see that there is more than one way to build a team. That they are blowing up the masterpiece that heckert bequeathed them. Yet they pretty much kept all of the players you valued.

            It seems like you may be the one who thinks there is only way to build a team.

          • CLEVTA

            I’m not sure how you can complain about a defense that is #2 in the NFL against the run (yds/carry) vs the likes of Ray Rice/Pierce, AP and Lamar Miller after years of being near the bottom, rank #6 in the league in def yds/pass attempt, top 5 in defensive sack % and #2 in total def yds/play. I’m assuming they subscribe to the NY Giants theory of building through a bevy of pass rushers and having a franchise QB as the team’s cornerstone. I personally don’t see a problem with loading up in the front 7 and attacking. It’s essentially either trying to draft/sign lockdown corners or build the front 7 which limits the need for multiple high end corners. Bottom line is there’s now way, based on short term results, that it’s not working and you can’t deny that. This is a playoff caliber defense as constructed right now. Build up the offense in the offseason and I don’t think it will take 3-4 years to get to the playoffs. In my opinion if the Browns were able to plug in essentially any one of 20 or so QBs in the NFL this is a 10+ win team.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            So the Saints’ early improvement has everything to do with signing a player that you wanted the Browns to sign, and nothing to do with the return of their Super Bowl winning head coach from a year’s suspension, the Bountygate scandal being a year behind them, the return of their Pro Bowl tight end to health, or any of the other personnel upgrades that they made.

            Wait and they switched from a 4-3 to a 3-4 and got a new defensive coordinator. HOW COULD THEY? THAT’S NOT PART OF THE KANICKI PLAN!

            Is there another Bum Phillips quote that explains this?

          • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

            the saints early improvement on defense has more to with identifying a hole on defense and patching it with a solid FA signing than anything else.

            ALL CAPS MAN BECAUSE I DISAGREE!!!

          • Steve

            Your long list of one example needs a control group to compare to.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            Yes, we’ve got it. Banner and Lombardi are irredeemably incompetent and frauds because they didn’t land every one of the top free agents available this offseason, and because in Banner and Lombardi’s first offseason with the franchise, they weren’t able to make the Browns as good as the Saints.

          • acto

            JK,
            Have you watched Vacarro? He looks better at NO than he did here at UT.

          • stkoran

            According to these artciles Vaccaro is pretty darn good.

            http://whodatdish.com/2013/09/23/kenny-vaccaro-continues-stellar-play-records-first-nfl-int/

            http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap2000000247703/article/kenny-vaccaro-lining-up-all-over-rob-ryans-saints-d

            So it makes sense that the Saints secondary got better by adding a 1st round hybrid/do-it-all safety and a top flight corner FA.

            It’s a lot easier for a team that has gone 13-3, 11-5, 13-3, 7-9 in season where coach was suspended to identify an area of need and plug the hole than it is for a team that went 5-11, 5-11, 4-12, 5-11 over the same period.

          • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

            Kanicki can’t respond to these points about Vaccaro, because then someone might respond to his response, and that would just be pointless, because everyone here is predisposed to disagree with Kanicki, and Kanicki is the only one who is capable of knowing the real truth. He’s written 10 or 20 thousand words that proves this, so just count em, OK?

          • dubbythe1

            They also added (or got back) their head coach JK, don’t forget. The beauty (and curse) of these discussions is all of the uncontrollable variables that we apply our critical analysis to in order to reach our conclusions, carry on.

          • acto

            dubby, you know I love you, but please take it easy on that “voice of reason” stuff. If we all thought logically and coherently, striving for cogent solutions of reasoning we would not be Browns fans.
            I shall toss my hat in the ring for reactionary drama any day.

          • Jim

            This is overly simplistic. Players like Dion Jordan have improved immensely due in no small part to the scheme change Rob Ryan implemented, which, according to the above, would be something the Browns should not do.

          • https://twitter.com/jimkanicki jimkanicki

            i wanted xavier rhodes.

          • dubbythe1

            one can also argue that Mangini was going into year three of a rebuild and then the reset button was hit….
            I understand that point, and yes I agree with some of Kanick’s points, but this FO is gonna do it their way, and no better time than to start now.

        • Cranky M

          This is a remarkably terrible argument…
          You honestly think we were just a few “plugged holes” away from being contenders?

          Comparing them to the Saints is especially disingenuous. They’ve been one of the top teams in the league for years now, and had one bad year last year. The Browns were terrible.

          To say that they could each have used that same philosophy of plugging in a couple of random free agents and had similar results is completely absurd.

          Also, which free agent QB do you think we could have “plugged in” to make us Super Bowl contenders this season, since we were so close? Alex Smith? You think last year’s Browns + Alex Smith = contender???

  • p_forever

    also this season reminds me of this classic kurt vonnegutism: “hold onto your hat; we could end up miles from here”*

    *also the punchline to a joke about how a certain lady of the evening greeted her customers-no coincidence, i’m sure

    • acto

      p_,
      Did you, or any of the other kids catch A. J. Green on NPR?
      It will be really hard to dislike the guy next week.

      • p_forever

        I missed that – it’s unclear how, given how much npr I digest per day. I will try to find a podcast.

  • Defenestration

    No mentions of the guy’s QBR?

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      A career (and presumptive) third stringer making his first start on the road gets a pass on that. But what is it? I haven’t looked it up yet. Anyway, whatever it is, it’s impossible that it would be significantly worse than Weeden’s.

      Anyway, Chud deserves a lot of credit here. Winning on the road in the NFL in your career (and presumptive) third stringer’s first start is just no joke, no matter who the opponent is.

      • Defenestration

        31.4 QBR
        0.6 Clutch weighted expected points added
        -3.4 Points contributed above the level of the average QB

        If that passes your smell test, I guess I would expect less enthusiasm in the write-up about the QB play yesterday.

        If it doesn’t, maybe it’s one data point to consider in your assessment of the merits of QBR as a stat.

        Agree wholeheartedly on the last paragraph.

        • nj0

          31 – 3.4 > 27

          • Defenestration

            not at all how it works

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          ???

          A 31.4 QBR puts Hoyer, in his second career start, first with this team, at “already 33% better than Weeden” despite that the latter has had two full training camps and 15+ career starts.

          That’s about spot on. Black and white. Easy as 1-2-3. http://espn.go.com/nfl/qbr

          • Defenestration

            One of the huge problems with the stat is that you can’t say, based upon those numbers, that QBR evaluates Hoyer as 33% better than Weeden. Easy as 1-2-3, eh?

            “The final step is transforming the clutch-valued expected points rate to a number from 0 to 100. This is just a mathematical formula with no significance other than to make it easier to communicate.”

            My railing against the use of QBR as a reasonable assessment of QB play is solely about the stat.

      • Peter M

        Weeds doesnt make half the throws on the last drive and certainly not the game winner.

  • CleveLandThatILove

    Tonight I’m going to re-watch a Browns game, every minute of it, for the first time since 2010. Monday Night Football!

    • cscales

      josh Gordon is an absolute god !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      what about the argument that weedon didn’t have him???

      • CleveLandThatILove

        Hoyer worked with only the bottom of the depth chart until last week. There is no argument. But he also watched Brady for a few years, how valuable was that?

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          This works. QBR accounts for the Gordon disparity as well, and as noted, Hoyer’s QBR, in his first start with the team, was 33% better than Weeden’s in his 16th/17th starts.

          • CleveLandThatILove

            He looked very prepared. They ran a lot of plays, and aside from a few mistakes it didn’t seem like the game was too fast for him. That was impressive, for as little real game experience that he has.

        • acto

          “But he also watched Brady for a few years, how valuable was that?”
          Brady Quinn??
          I like Hoyer.
          On another note, I am also very certain that both Brady Quinn and Derek Anderson could be successful in this league.

          • CleveLandThatILove

            He was the #2 behind Tom Brady for like 3 yrs after NE picked him up.

          • acto

            I know, I was just being a JACKASS as usual. You know I love you CLTIL!

          • CleveLandThatILove

            Yes I know. I also know there’s not a molecule of jackassity in you. Plenty of weisenheimer, though, and you know I like that.

      • bupalos

        When? For the two games this year that looked exactly like the 15 games last year that he did have him?

        • cscales

          great point !!!!!
          wondering if hoyer’s a mirage or the real deal ???
          we’ll find out sunday !!!

    • Acto

      CLTIL,
      The rumor mill is ripe with stories that Josh Gordon will be traded within a week.
      I have not heard anything from anyone I know I can trust, but I believe it is in the local Cleveland media, however that is hard to get from Tejas.

      • CleveLandThatILove

        I think that came out before the game, hopefully they are rethinking things in light of what happened on Sunday. Or else Banner has a death wish.

      • nj0

        Those rumors sure seem like closing the barn door after the horses are out.

        Not a peep leading up to the TR trade…
        TR gets traded….
        Rumor mill: They’re trading EVERYONE!!!

        • bupalos

          I think it would benefit the browns to start those rumors. For one thing it gets teams looking and thinking about it, for another it steps up the heat on Gordon. Personally I do think the guy will strike out. The most disturbing part of all to me is that he had some kind of elaborate excuse ready to deploy on being caught, one he worked up in advance effectively enough to get a reduction. And every time he flunks a test he spouts this overearnest boilerplate about learning a lesson. It’s classic addict stuff. Hope I’m wrong.

          • acto

            I am with you on this Bupa, the Browns shold trade GOrdon while his value is high. I would let him go for a second or third rounder. here are at least 5 good receivers available in the 2014 draft.
            I do not have a big problem with Mr Gordon’s use of recreational drugs, but Gordon and Little both have rather obvious character issues.
            Mr Little also has a marked tendency to develop Duran hands at very crucial points in the game. I would like to see both Little and Gordon traded as quickly as possible.

          • NeedsFoodBadly

            Beautiful boxing reference there, acto.

          • acto

            I boxed for 12 years and Duran was one of my favorites.
            (This should explain my obvious brain damage.)

          • bupalos

            I’d be trying to pull out a 1st, or just go ahead and ride out the storm that is probably coming. The guy really is one of the few game changing talents we’ve had through here. I’m watching his double move yesterday and it looks like he is sitting calmly in an invisible chair and then two little toetaps and voom he’s gone. I know it was a sleepy loser of a CB, but it still looks freaky.

            The thing that’s weird about him is he looks like he’s going 3/4’s speed all the time, and yet his body is moving faster than anyone else’s.

            I also caught him actually blocking.

          • jpftribe

            I caught the same thing. The guy is so fluid he actually looks slow, until you see everyone else is slower.

            I’d really hate to see him go, but the math says he won’t make it very Randy Moss-like.

        • acto

          To quote the great H. L. Mencken, “you are probably right” nj0.
          My most humble apologies.

  • http://www.redright88.com/ Tom_RedRight88

    Wanted to throw in a disclaimer: The stat that Hoyer is just the third Browns QB since 1999 to win his first game as a starter came about from the approximately 2 minutes and 30 seconds of research I had time to do over the weekend while preparing my Cheddar Bay entries.

    I’m fairly certain that number is accurate – especially when you consider the Browns have only won one season-opening game and the list of quarterbacks who have started a game is amazingly sub-par.

    Bit If that number turns out to be off by a QB or two, don’t blame Frowns, blame the research department.

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      Thank you kindly, Sir.

    • http://www.redright88.com/ Tom_RedRight88

      And sure enough, friend of the program Jeff Rich checks in with the fact that DA started a game in 2006 and loss to the Steelers.

      Which means that Hoyer and Jeff Garcia may be the only Browns quarterbacks since 1999 to win their first game as starters in Orange and Brown.

      Good lord, what horrendous quarterback play this team has had over the years.

      • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

        Thanks, Jeff. Post fixed.

  • Ron

    HOYER THE DESTROYER!

  • Bryan

    DUDE! I love hearing some optimism from this corner of the web. The world is a more fun place when Frowns supports the Browns FO.

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      Thanks. As long as everyone remembers that life isn’t all about fun all of the time.

    • acto

      Great job Bryan, (that is my attempt at that sarcasm stuff), now Frownie will retreat back into “Reserved Optimism”, then “level headed realism”, shortly thereafter he will sink into “well guarded caution” and the next thing you know he will be singing “The Song of the Volga Boatmen” for a few weeks.

  • alexb
    • alexb

      no one remembers this? really? the entire bar was rolling out where I was

  • Siper Bowl

    Great article Frownie…. Too many downers of late in Cleveland sports media like Greg Brinda demanding after our win yesterday we should still be furious of front office for T Rich trade instead of taking calls to celebrate the win. Go Hoyer and go Browns… Now have a reason to watch and attend the next 13.

    • humboldt

      IT IS WRONG FOR PEOPLE TO FEEL EMOTIONZ ABOUT SPORTZ!!!!!!1

  • SeattleBrownsFan
    • nj0

      Our next stopgap?

      stopgap (n.) – a temporary way of dealing with a problem or satisfying a need

      When has a Browns QB ever satisfied a need?

      • bupalos

        I think there have been probably 20 or 30 cases where teams have said “who’s on the schedule… let’s see…>insert neverendinglist of Browns QB’s here>…My god, THAT IS EXACTLY WHAT WE NEED!

      • acto

        I know you are going to hate this nj0, but the rumor was, (also confirmed by my brother-in-law), that Brian Sipe satisfied some needs during his surfer cool guy days. (Josh Gordon type needs.)

  • Mark Johnson

    The truth.

  • Bryan

    Two stats on Hoyer vs. Weeden:

    Hoyer has 4 more years of NFL experience.
    Hoyer is 2 years younger.

    #YoungQBs

    • bupalos

      Extra fun stat: Hoyer is 10x smarter.

      • dubbythe1

        Agreed, Weeden is a bag of rocks.

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          Box of rocks. Bag of nickels.

  • Deputy Glitters

    Sincerely excited about this article. It seems like it’s been a long time since I’ve heard this level of optimism here. Gave me a chill! Welcome back?!

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      Thanks. As noted above, this is all good as long as it’s clear that life isn’t about fun all of the time.

  • bupalos

    Wow I feel like someone just un-killed my dog!

  • nj0

    So what kind of odds would people put on us winning the North? I’m getting ahead of this team, but Pittsburgh looks bad while Baltimore and Cincinnati have looked uneven against teams that have been questionable thus far (us included).

    If the defense plays the way it has and the offense improves throughout the year, how much of a pipe dream is it to think we have a shot?

    • bupalos

      I think it’s a severe, severe pipe dream. Cinci is legitimately good,despite their Ginger only being 2 or 3 times as good as our Ginger. Baltimore is solid overall too, at least as long as Ngata is healthy and Flacco keeps making clutch plays. And not to stir Kanicki’s nest, but our d-backfield beyond haden and ward is both bad and thin as tissue. Though I will say, Skrine is improving and I like him, and Trevin Wade shows up too.

      Frowns’ coinage of “the thinking man’s charlie frye” is I think the absolute ceiling for Hoyer, and I’d be shocked if he hit that ceiling even in parts of every game let alone consistently the entire season.Seems like he does make good reads and knows in which direction to apply his limited talents. Even his basically miserable start against SF for the Cards showed that. But you can trust that you will still be thinking “oh my god, this is our quarterback?!” several more times this year, if he manages to hold on to the position. That Mini dbackfield is purportedly very bad WITH it’s best player, and they were without him for most of that game.

      The thing that I find most exciting about Hoyer is that he may help show other young players how much technique, study, and making the right decision can help maximize talent. That is, he might help set the tone to help us be a smart and hardworking team, whereas Weeden does the opposite.

      But Pittsburgh, yes, I don’t think it’s crazy to think we could start consistently running off wins against those guys and be back on top of the all time series pronto. The dam has burst on that offensive line and they might be one big Rothlisburger hit away from being a truly bottom of the barrel team. And we’ve got the ammo to supply that hit.

      • nj0

        Severe, severe? I’ll take it. That’s about where I had the Indians making the playoffs back in April.

        • bupalos

          “So you’re saying I have a chance!”

          Disturbing how Texas came out and blew Houston’s doors off, where we were squeeking out 2-1 rain-shortened white-knucklers.

          • nj0

            Lol. Now we’re criticizing them for not winning games by enough? Taking four games from any MLB, even the worst, is an amazing feat. Lighten up.

          • bupalos

            Don’t get me wrong, i’m going bonkers on the tribe, and whatever smoke and mirrors it takes is AOK by me. And they had to beat that Nazi sounding guy and he was pretty on point that night. But I’m not sure Houston really truly qualifies as MLB. The w-l haven’t quite fallen out that way, but I think might be the worst team of the last several decades. And I have a feeling as ‘amazing” as the feat was, Texas is about to repeat it.

            Really pissed about the end of that O’s game, I desperately want a game down on the lake. I think it could remind folks how this thing can work.

          • nj0

            I don’t think Houston is as horrible as people make them out to be. Very bad? Yes. All time terrible? Meh. They have actually exceeded my expectations.

            I think they get knocked extra hard since they don’t have one stand out player on the team. Just looking at some past 100 game lose teams: the ’10 Mariners had Felix Hernandez. The ’04 Diamondbacks had Johnson and Webb. Even the ’03 Tigers had Dmitri Young.

            Jason Castro is probably the best player on the Astros, but the only one anybody seems to know is Altuve and he’s had a down year.

            I think the Astros will take one from the Rangers, just based on random occurrence and the nature of the game.

          • bupalos

            >>>I think the Astros will take one from the Rangers, just based on random occurrence and the nature of the game.>>>

            From your lips to the ears of the team with the 13M payroll.

          • nj0

            They’ve won 32.5% of their games thus far!!!

          • bupalos

            Well they don’t have a 32.5% chance tonight. More like a snowball’s chance. Darvish against something called “Peacock.” I hope that’s a person and not an actual Peacock. I wouldn’t put it past Houston at this point.

            I know, I know, baseball. I still think the odds are definitely in favor of a sweep.

          • nj0

            They already beat him once this year. 25% chance!!!

          • Jim

            Indians are the first team since the 1960’s Yankees to sweep four game series against four different teams. And they did it against the White Sox three! times.

      • MichaelTheRed

        The season could definitely be a win for me if the only thing the browns do the rest of the way is sweep the steelers into oblivion. That’s something for a browns fan to hang his hat on no? All those years before OSU sucked before Tressel got there, if all they did was beat Michigan all was well. That’s where I’m at now with the Browns. At the very least split with Shittsburgh and you’ve made my NFL season tolerable.

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          A season sweep of the Steelers is well in play, I think.

          • Wiseoldredbeard

            That feels good to say, doesn’t it?!?

          • MichaelTheRed

            damn right it does. A good Roethlisberger beating is also in play. I vote for not feeding Desmond for 3 days prior to the game and then whipering in his ear Roethlisberger was flirting with his g/f right before the game.

      • jpftribe

        The only area I disagree here is their ginger vs ours. I would concur right now he is 2 or 3 times better, but on
        Y because he is 10x better at reading defenses. Dalton’s accuracy is really pretty poor. If he threw on target Cincinnati would be scary good, like Denver scary good.

        Hoyer threw some really nice balls. Problem was a few of them were to wide open linebackers. Last Sunday may have been his best game ever. But I think he has a lot more upside potential than a thinking mans Charlie Frye. It is all going to be about read and react.

        • bupalos

          I went back and watched Hoyer’s game and it is possible I’m selling him a little short. Gordon screwed the pooch on that one 3rd down throw before the 4th down attempt, and they went wrong page on 2 other throws I’m going to assume were Gordon’s fault or the lack of snaps between them. And bess dropped 2 of the exact same balls that Little drops, though I’m sure we won’t hear a peep about that.

    • acto

      “If the defense plays the way it has and the offense improves throughout the year, how much of a pipe dream is it to think we have a shot?”
      I appreciate your optimism njO, but to answer your question I would have to quote a song by The Toyes, they have the best answer for you.
      “I smoke two joints, before I smoke two joints and then I smoke two more.”

  • Petefranklin

    Who spiked the Kool aid?

    Bengals are coming to the factory of sadness….getcha bottles ready!

  • jamick6000

    RGIII has a lower QBR than Brandon Weeden in 2013. If the skins can get a first round pick, I’d move him.

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      RGIII had his golden chance to speak out against the Redskins name. He even had a visit to the Muhammed Ali Museum to drive home the importance of this responsibility. He failed miserably. He is now being eaten alive by the Curse of Wahoo’s cousin, as fully accounted for by QBR.

      • jamick6000

        my point was that making a judgement based on 3 weeks can lead to some silly conclusions.

        not making a point about RGIII specifically.

      • CleveLandThatILove

        He’s only 23 years old. What expectations were placed on you at that age? So his impression from the Ali museum visit was to not be impressed by what others think you are supposed think, or do. Pretty introspective.

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          How can you assume that it was that and not just inertia? That he’s too comfortable to take on a tough issue, no matter how important, and no matter how much he might be one of the only ones on earth to resolve it? Where’s the evidence for your assumption that there’s any introspection at play here at all?

          And to answer your question, I didn’t have millions of dollars and millions of eyes on me when I was 23, but that was right about when I figured out that Wahoo was an abomination. Nor did anyone take me to the Muhammed Ali museum, or ask me what I thought about the issue. To those whom much is given, much is expected. That’s in your bible, right?

          • alexb

            “That’s in your bible, right?” You mean the book they told native americans if they didn’t read they’d be taken out into the woods and shot?

          • acto

            alex, I live in the dreaded “bible belt” they still tell us all something to that effect.
            Every bible comes with a gun, a lobotomy and your official membership card into The Right Wing Nut-Job Club.

          • alexb

            oh I know they still do. I know it damn well. There are parts of this country where you’d have to do a double take to reassure yourself of your surroundings otherwise you’d swear you timewarped to around 1000AD.

          • acto

            alexb,
            Brilliant observation!
            This is certainly not the proper venue, so I shall be brief, but I wrote some stuff about our current “Crusades” in the middle east and the more I dug into the reasons given v the reasons realized the closer the timeline becomes to being identical, never ending and rationalized in the same way.
            “They are trapped on the wires and dying in waves”

          • alexb

            alexb <—-gnostic

          • CleveLandThatILove

            I’m just saying give him some time. And I don’t have a bible, but that sounds about right.

        • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1kbBmlAvdI PML

          Hey CLTILOL,

          Your dreamboat Hillis got the boot from the dysfunctional dumpster fire that is the buccos. We need a running back – what say you we get this bandwagon started?

          • CleveLandThatILove

            You know I’ll jump on that wagon, with just one caveat. Excuse me for just one sec…

            LAWRENCE VICKERS. PAGING LAWRENCE VICKERS TO THE BROWN AND ORANGE COURTESY PHONE.

          • acto

            You kids are both right!

          • CleveLandThatILove

            Why the hell not?

          • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1kbBmlAvdI PML

            Vickers can’t tote the rock and doesn’t make you swoon.

  • Warburton MacKinnon

    I still think I am more in Camp Kanicki,then I am in Camp Frowns on the whole debate. That being said, I kinda think the win was the begining of a revolt from the coaches,coordinators,and players ala Major League and is NOT front office,nor perhaps owner approved. If the team tanked,as does seem to be at least a partial plan of the Banner regime those in the front office won’t suffer from it.
    Yet,the coaches,players and coordinators would suffer greatly. Chud might never get another chance as head coach, Norv might be forced into retirement, and Horton would need to wait even longer for a HC gig. That’s not half as bad as it would be for the players many on the offense,in the deffensive backfield,and special teamers,and some or all on the practice squad would never have another chance to play in the NFL. All would have to live with the part they played in tanking a season, which would I would think ruin some of them even if they were still able to keep jobs in the NFL. The tanking concept would also have a negative effect on the NFL as a whole,more so if it worked than if it failed. I think if Chud and co. continue down this path the house cleaning will be monumental,or Banner and co. end up being let go instead…considering Haslams issues I see Banner winning that fight, I also don’t think Banner wants Chud here very much anyway( to much of a connection to the team and area,the built in hometown guy does good factor and some leverage if it comes to a power struggle). Either way,it’s to early to see what Chud and co. will do as the season progresses,but the offseason supports Kanicki more than it does Frowns as it presently stands.

    • cscales

      totally delusional !!!!!!!!!!!!

      • man

        Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

    • acto

      “Camp Kanicki”
      Great idea Warb! Next summer I want to go to Camp Kanicki. I can already imagine the opening address by our much revered Kamp Kounselor Kanicki, “Kids, this summer everyone will learn all there is to know about drinking whiskey and becoming a degenerate gambler”.
      Sign me up!

  • bupalos

    This is exactly the tone I want the QB on this young team to be setting.

    “You get angry at yourself,” he said. “It is not like it was a bad throw, but it was just two bad decisions and that’s what gets me angry. If you get hit while you’re throwing, there’s only so much you can do. But when they’re bad decisions, that’s not my game, and that really gets me going.”

    This is just miles away from Weeden’s usual thrust, which is something like “yeah, bad plays happen to me, but the important thing is I don’t let it bother me.”

    • NeedsFoodBadly

      Agreed.

    • MichaelTheRed

      Give Hoyer a couple games of running for his life and then we’ll see how he sounds like after games. Remember Weedon was saying the right things after his losses last season. For awhile at least. Than he just got sick of having to explain losing.

      • bupalos

        I’m just saying this is the tone I want set. I don’t feel like Weeden ever struct that tone in winning or losing. As I remember his main reaction to the Eagles horror show was “hey that was fun.” And I feel like time and again when he totally ?@#!’s up his response is something to the effect of “the important thing is I bounce back and don’t let it bother me.”

        • GRRustlers

          As a former member of the Weeden fan club I am thrilled you said this.

          I don’t want my QB to have fun out there. I want him to win and at the very least not be the reason we lose.

          The performance by Hoyer on Sunday was great. Of course he made 2 terrible throws and I can live with that because he HAD to make 3 throws and nailed all 3 of them. He made the plays when he had to and with this defense that is really all the kid has to do.

          Maybe we have just seen losing for so long that we no longer know what it even takes to build a winner. I have no fricking clue but I do know this much: Chud > Shurmur

  • Beeej

    130+ comments. I missed this.

    • Bryan

      Frowns blog is back to what it is best at – intelligent comment section discussing the Cleveland Browns.

      • acto

        “intelligent comment section”??

        What have you been reading?

        We are a bunch of dim witted masochists caring far too much about Cleveland sports. It is like we go in there every night to root for The Washington Generals.

        “The Generals are due for a win tonight, I can feel it! They may be on a losing streak, but there is no way the Globe Trotters can beat them again, not 2,510 in a row, I am betting it all on The Generals tonight.”

        • NeedsFoodBadly

          See, this guy gets it!

      • Chris Mc

        Cleveland Frowns: The place where brilliant minds assemble to willfully pool
        ignorance with questionable logic in order to reach absurd conclusions.

  • Nobody in Particular

    So, Frownie, what you’re saying here is that the secret to survivin’ is knowin’ what to throw away, knowin’ what to keep?

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      Precisely.

  • bupalos

    Hoo boy, looks like the ghost of sockalexis better find a new skin suit pronto and defend his curse, because Cleveland baseball looks to have some serious magic flowing.

    • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

      Showing those White Sox who’s boss! Serious magic!

      Ay, the harder they fall. So sad.

      • jamick6000

        agreed — The soon-to-be playoff baseball team is actually bad; the 1-3 football team is good imo.

      • jamick6000

        nothing can compare, in terms of level of magic, to fake punting your way to a narrow victory over a winless Minnesota Vikings team.

        • http://www.clevelandfrowns.com/ Cleveland Frowns

          Once again you are badly missing the point, but don’t worry because the Curse of Wahoo won’t be letting the Browns win a Super Bowl any time soon either. We’re well within the safety zone with them in comparison to the baseball team.

          • jamick6000

            ok

        • bupalos

          Booooooooo…

          The fakes in that game come highly overrated. I took time I didn’t have to watch all-22 today and we won that game a lot more thoroughly than one might have thought– and Minnesota played a fairly sharp game and I feel even got a slightly larger slice of the breaks.

          Of note, the Hoyer-Cameron attempt at the pylon was absolutely as clear a case of PI as you will get. They noted it on the broadcast but said the ref must have thought it wasn’t catchable, which was hard to tell with angles on the closeup. In fact it was a perfect throw and near certain completion inside the 2.

          But Minnesota has simply got to get another QB. Their passing game is so well designed, and the play-action with AP is such a killer. Ponder does almost nothing with it, except run.

          • cscales

            matt cassel on the bench is 5 times better than ponder!!! I worried about hijm the whole game.
            what’s the word on sheared for sunday??

          • bupalos

            Not starting sounds like not playing. Not good.

          • jamick6000

            “The fakes in that game come highly overrated.”

            I’m not “rating” them at all. We got 10 points from a fake punt and a fake FG. That’s all there is to it.

            I like Chud taking risks, the team executed, etc. good good good. But relying on fakes to win doesn’t seem (to me at least) to be the “sensible, long-term plan” that you and others are inventing out of thin air.

            Maybe they can though. We’ll see!

          • bupalos

            They got 24 points from a muffed punt, two Christian Ponder scrambles, and a dual-possession jump-ball bomb. And we got cheated out of 7 points by a totally flagrant PI. The point you are trying to make is that we didn’t just out and out beat them, we “relied on fakes” and I’m just saying looking at it in detail I think you’re wrong here. Tape don’t lie. Some breaks went this way or that but Cleveland was the better looking team pretty well throughout.

          • jamick6000

            My point is that this win was a fluke. A bad team can play a good game. But for a bad team, this kind of performance is not readily reproducible.

            What could be an indication that what you saw on Sunday isn’t reproducible? One example might be that, in the future, we could have a tough time finding Jordan Cameron uncovered during “field goals.”

            You can concoct any alternate history you like during your tape interpretation and I guess you might be right. We will see the quality of your interpretation as the season goes on.

          • acto

            Bupa, You have All 22? Do you also have a basement, a spare bedroom, or even a shed in your backyard?
            Are you willing to adopt?

          • bupalos

            Yes, yes, yes, and yes–but not you. Your reputation precedes you and I fear you would eat too much and scare the Bupettes.

            But in the cause of furthering human-ape relations I am inclined to help. Give me a few hours here.

  • nj0

    Just read this at the PD. I’ve been an agnostic on the Browns’ quarterbacks since the days of Holcomb, but good lord… I do not want this guy as our QB any more. I don’t even want him on our roster.

    Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden didn’t mince words when asked what he learned while standing on the sidelines while Brian Hoyer defeated the Vikings, 31-27 last week.

    “Don’t get hurt,” said Weeden, who’s been ruled out for the Bengals
    game with his sprained thumb. “I don’t know how else to put it. Injuries suck. They happen. Things happen for a reason and we’ll see how it plays out.”

    • acto

      Hoyer is the new Browns’ Framsized Quarterback, Weeds can go and….
      I have been crying for an experienced retread and they have him now!
      So, from now on, no more draft choices wasted on running backs and quarterbacks!

      • alexb

        I’d take Mr Autograph hound in a second though. I still have yet to really see Bridgewater play, but Manziel is the real deal. That dude would be perfectly comfortable behind notoriously porous Cleveland O lines. Plus with him we might actually be able to run some read option plays. He would instantly make our running backs better.

        • acto

          alexb,
          No way! Johnny Ballgame would never make it in Cleveland. Once he sampled the myriad lures of the big city he would be far wayward, on a dark and dangerous path to his ruin. How are you going to keep-um down on the farm once they have seen the bright lights of Parma? He would be far better off in Green Bay where both bright lights are burnt out right now.

          • alexb

            ok skill wise he’d be perfect for Cleveland, but yeah he may buckle down on his academics and declare a second major if he thinks the Browns are interested. Of course if Hoyer is still playing like this at the end of the season this is all a moot point.

  • Warburton MacKinnon

    Look, for now I am done with the argument of wether hope/Frowns is correct,or if anger and past history/last draft and free agency/Kanick is correct. Right now it doesn’t matter and we won’t be able to properly judge until September of next year(which has a lot to do with the anger of Kanick and myself I think). We all have to deal with the present shit sandwitch in front of us that is this season,and I still contend if we end up with a record that does not put us in line for at least the second or third pick, that there is a diconnect between the coaching and front office. In the end it doesn’t matter if any of us are right, if they screw up the draft and free agencey again we all lose for several more years and that sucks donkey balls.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1kbBmlAvdI PML

    WOOP! WOOP! I am picking up what Chud is laying down! How enjoyable was that??!!! Pittstain is 0-4 and all is right with the world today.

    • acto

      We love you PML!!
      What are the respective division places right now?
      Shall we all jump on the bandwagon and declare Hoyer better than Ruthlessraper?

      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1kbBmlAvdI PML

        Obvs

    • acto

      I must also admit that I love your literary reference PML.
      “The lark’s on the wing;The snail’s on the thorn;God’s in His heaven—All’s right with the world!”
      Robert Browning must have been a Browns fan!

      • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1kbBmlAvdI PML

        If my parents hasn’t left me with so much stupid free time growing up and had gotten us a TV like the rest of the civilized world, this wouldn’t be happening.

        I threw a Pogo Possum reference out there last week.

  • Deputy Glitters

    May have to give Lombardi credit before long on his belief in Hoyer–NFL starting quarterback.

  • alexb

    Great fucking win today. I was at the game and afterwards as everybody was basking in the glow of a browns win and watching the Indians close out in Minnesotta, was good to be a Browns fan. That being said. Let’s please curb the talk about winning the AFC North till we’re closing in near the end of the season. The defense is absolutely playing out of it’s mind right now, they’re not going to play that way the whole season….not this season at least. The offense will let them down throughout the season, we still have way a lot of work on that side of the ball. The defense though should keep games competitive, hopefully. So that’s something to lay our hats on. I just don’t want to see a let down on the enthusiasm for what’s being built if the team falls off towards the end of the season. We’re seeing right now where the team is going, we have to let that play out for the next 4-5 years minimum. We’re going to see small spurts of Shurmur ball again, this is Cleveland afterall……but we can’t be calling for anybody’s head. Let them build this.

    • nj0

      Tied for first place in the North!!!

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