Red Right 88

In Cleveland, hope dies last

Archive for the month “January, 2013”

Warming up to Ray Horton and an attacking Browns defense

ray horton browns defenseWe admit to being a bit apprehensive when the news first broke that the Cleveland Browns intended to hire Ray Horton and his 3-4 defensive principles to be the team’s defensive coordinator.

But Horton’s introductory press conference, combined with some time to consider what he wants to do, has us starting to buy into what Horton is selling on defense.

“We are going to be a defense that gives offenses problems,” Horton said (and when was the last time anyone could say that about a Browns defense?). “Our guys can play a multitude of things. I don’t like to get pigeonholed into, ‘Well, he is this.’ Here’s what we’re going to be. We’re going to be a team that looks at the offense and tries to take away what they do best. Now, that may mean one snap being a 5-2. The next snap it may be a 4-4. It will be predicated by what the offense does and we have athletes that can stand up, that can put their hand in the ground and that can run. That’s why I go back to the multi-front defense.

“I can’t tell you what we’re going to be right now, it depends on who we line up game one against. What do they do? What do we need to take away? The thing I’m most excited about is I have a group of athletes that can run and hit and they’re not limited to just saying, ‘Coach, line me up in a specific front, number system and play.’ Just run and hit.”

Read more…

Browns should keep Weeden as starter in 2013

temp2012-11-04_Weeden_Brandon136--nfl_mezz_1280_1024As a new regime and a new coaching staff in Berea face the same old questions during yet another off-season of change for the Cleveland Browns, there is one eternal question that stands above all the rest:

What should the Browns do about the quarterback position?

But unlike years past, where fans were forced to debate the merits of Tim Couch vs. Kelly Holcomb, Trent Dilfer vs. Charlie Frye or Derek Anderson vs. Brady Quinn, this time the answer is as simple as it is obvious.

Brandon Weeden should be the Browns starting quarterback in 2013.

To find out why, visit The Cleveland Fan.

Even when the Browns do something right …

hi-res-158710743_crop_exact… it doesn’t pay off in the standings.

One of the long-held beliefs in the NFL is the need to build a team “from within” – meaning you should focus on having a strong offensive and defensive line.

The Browns have been doing just that the past few years and it is starting to pay off in one respect, as Pro Football Focus ranked the offensive line as the fifth best in the NFL.

Read more…

This Irving kid just might be a keeper for the Cavs

Kyrie Irving ; Tristan ThompsonCleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving was named the Eastern Conference Player of the Week on Monday, which should come as no surprise to anyone who watched the Cavs play last week.

In helping the Cavs to a three-game winning streak, Irving averaged 35.7 points per game, 4 rebounds, 4 assists and 1.7 steals. He scored more than 30 points in all three games, becoming just the fifth player in NBA history to have three consecutive 30-point games before his 21st birthday.

“This has been a very good week for our team,” Irving said in an understatement on the team’s website. “We’re working hard and making progress. While I’m honored to win the award this week, the most important and exciting thing is our success as a team and continuing our focus to keep getting better every day.”

Read more…

#ArtOut

browns-fans-940-8colOn Feb. 2, the 46-member selection committee for the Pro Football Hall of Fame will meet to vote on this year’s class of inductees.

And there is a chance that the unthinkable may happen when the group gets together in New Orleans – they may actually vote Art Modell into the Hall of Fame.

The full list of the people on the selection committee can be found at the Hall of Fame’s website.

What follows is a list of the Twitter handles that we could find for the various members of the selection committee. If you believe that Modell is not worthy of being enshrined in the Hall of Fame, it’s important to let the people voting on his candidacy know.

Tweet them with the hashtag #ArtOut. Send them the links to our column and Jeff Rich’s column from The Cleveland Fan as well as this column from Jim Kanicki.

Let them know, because there is a very real chance that sympathies lie with Modell, but the people making the decision must be reminded about what he did to Cleveland.

Read more…

Art Modell does not belong in the Pro Football Hall of Fame

2013_01_art_hofOn Feb. 2, the 46-member selection committee for the Pro Football Hall of Fame will meet to vote on this year’s class of inductees.

And there is a chance that the unthinkable may happen when the group gets together in New Orleans – they may actually vote Art Modell into the Hall of Fame.

According to the hall’s website, the selection committee is “charged with the vital task of continuing to be sure that new enshrinees are the finest the game has produced.”

In no way does that describe Modell and, if the selection committee ignores how he stole the Browns from Cleveland and votes him in, the Hall of Fame would be better off shutting its doors forever.

To learn more about Modell’s sham candidacy for the hall, head over to The Cleveland Fan.

Actions don’t speak louder than words on Mike Lombardi

Browns Raiders Football.JPEG-096fdTalking isn’t doing. It is a kind of good deed to say well; and yet words are not deeds. – William Shakespeare

Three days later and we’re still trying to wrap our brains around the fact that Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam signed off on a deal to bring Mike Lombardi back to Cleveland.

Plenty of people are talking about the decision – not surprising since Lombardi has not actually worked in the NFL since 2007 – and we have to wonder just what it is that 99 percent of the NFL missed on Lombardi all these years. So many openings, so few job offers.

So let’s take a look at what Lombardi’s biggest supporters have been saying.

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Browns can’t stand good times, hire Mike Lombardi

browns-lombardi-football0d114-1

A new regime and a new era in Cleveland Browns football.

That’s what fans were promised when Jimmy Haslam bought the team from Randy Lerner, cleaned out team president Mike Holmgren, general manager Tom Heckert and coach Pat Shurmur and installed Joe Banner as CEO.

But in so many ways, it’s still business as usual in Berea with Friday’s announcement that the Browns had hired Mike Lombardi to serve as vice president of player personnel.

Read more…

RIP, Proposition Joe

Joe_StewartSad news for fans of The Wire and good acting as Robert Chew, who played Proposition Joe, has passed away at the young age of 52.

According to his obituary in The Baltimore Sun, Chew passed away on Thursday of apparent heart failure.

In addition to acting, Chew also taught and mentored child and young adult actors at Baltimore’s Arena Players, where he found the group of young actors who played the students in the Baltimore City School system who were the main focus of season four of the series (one of the most heartbreaking seasons for any TV show). He would eventually land roles in the series for 22 of his acting students.

The Wire cast was an embarrassment of riches and it was easy, I think, for outsiders to overlook some of those who were so essential as supporting players,” series creator David Simon told the paper. “Robert’s depiction of Proposition Joe was so fixed and complete — from the very earliest scenes — that the writers took for granted that anything we sent him would be finely executed.”

As a character, Prop Joe moved through the Baltimore streets quietly, operating under a simple business plan of, “buy for a dollar, sell for two – and later for all that gangster bullshit.” The fact that Chew, a very large man, was tapped to play a character that wanted to remain invisible was a nice contrast and one of those little things that added up to make the The Wire so great.

Chew was so perfect in the role – as were just about every actor cast in the series – that it is hard to picture him playing anyone else. He was one of those characters that started out small and, over time, grew into a vital part of the series (and we still haven’t gotten over Cheese for betraying his uncle to Marlo).

The acting world is a little poorer today without Chew.

The Browns need to worry about the Browns

chip kelly eaglesThe Philadelphia Eagles hired Oregon coach Chip Kelly on Wednesday, surprising, well, pretty much everyone.

The hiring’s impact rippled all the way to Cleveland, where Browns fans were as bipolar as always with reactions ranging from betrayal that Kelly chose the Eagles over the hometown Browns, to anger at Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and CEO Joe Banner for not being able to “seal the deal” with the skittish Kelly.

The reality, however, is that the Kelly hiring should have absolutely no impact on the Browns – just because the Eagles sneezed doesn’t mean the Browns have to catch the flu.

To find out what this all means, visit The Cleveland Fan.

(Photo by Getty Images)

 

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