Red Right 88

Life as a Cleveland Sports Fan

Archive for the category “Cleveland Browns”

Browns make Bobby Garrett Stanford’s first No. 1

bobby garrett cleveland brownsThe Cleveland Browns hold two first-round draft picks in the upcoming NFL Draft.

While many expect the Browns to use one of those picks on a quarterback, history shows that drafting a quarterback – especially one in the first round – has been an exercise in futility for the Browns.

Since joining the NFL in 1950, the Browns have drafted six quarterbacks in the first round and none of them have worked out.

In Part One of our series on those six quarterbacks, we looked at Harry Agganis, the team’s first-round selection in 1952.

Today we focus on Bobby Garrett, the first Stanford quarterback taken No. 1 overall in the draft.

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Browns lost Harry Agganis to Red Sox in 1952

The Runner 1951 AGGANIS, HARRYThe Cleveland Browns hold two first-round draft picks in the upcoming NFL Draft.

While many expect the Browns to use one of those picks on a quarterback, history shows that drafting a quarterback – especially one in the first round – has been an exercise in futility for the Browns.

Since joining the NFL in 1950, the Browns have drafted six quarterbacks in the first round and none of them have worked out.

Today, in the second part of our series on those ill-fated six quarterbacks, we take a look at Harry Agganis, a first-round selection in 1952.

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The Browns, quarterbacks and the draft – a cautionary tale

tim couch draftedThe NFL Draft will open on May 8 in New York City with the Cleveland Browns holding two selections in the first round and 10 draft picks over all.

Over the course of the three-day draft, Browns general manager Ray Farmer will face a puzzle that has continually befuddled his predecessors ever since the Browns entered the National Football League in 1950.

How can the team find a quarterback to lead them to their first championship since 1964?

Anyone who has watched the Browns since they returned to the league in 1999 knows that quarterback has been the one position on the team that has been a continual nightmare. But the problem goes back even further than that.

Since the mid-1970s, when we first started spending our Sunday afternoons with those guys in the orange helmets, the Browns have had exactly two good quarterbacks – Brian Sipe and Bernie Kosar. You can throw in Vinnie Testaverde in 1994 and Derek Anderson in 2007, if you’d like, but they were both one-year wonders and neither was drafted by the Browns.

And therein resides the problem.

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It’s on the Browns now to make the Alex Mack deal work out

alex mack resignsWell that didn’t take very long.

This morning, Pro Bowl center Alex Mack signed an offer sheet with the Jacksonville Jaguars. By this afternoon, the Browns matched the deal, meaning Mack will be in Cleveland for at least two more years.

The deal guarantees Mack $18 million over the first two years of the deal ($10 million this fall, $8 million in 2015, with $8 million per year in the final three years of the contract), and includes an option for Mack to walk away after two years if he is not happy.

“I’m excited for both Alex and the Browns,” Farmer said in a team statement. “We have talked about keeping our own players and this is a positive for us. Alex is a quality person and player that truly brings to life what playing like a Brown means.”

So the Browns now have two years to make sure that does not happen. But before we get to that, we wanted to go over a few items we’ve seen talked about in the past few days concerning Mack, his position and free agency in general.

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Are the Browns going to lose their Alex Mack gamble?

alex mack offer sheetEver since early in the 2013 NFL season when the news came out that Alex Mack was not going to negotiate a new contract with the Cleveland Browns until after the season, we’ve been on the side of not worrying about anything until their is something to worry about.

Well, we may now have something to worry about.

The news came out today that Jacksonville will sign Mack to an offer sheet on Friday, one that will be for five years and is reportedly “designed to make it as difficult as possible for the Browns to match” the offer.

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Former Browns quarterbacks prove to be a resilient bunch

will browns winWith the NFL now just a month away, the talk is heating up about who the Cleveland Browns will select – especially in the first round.

Many expect the Browns to select from the group of top-ranked quarterbacks that includes (in no particular order), Blake BortlesDerek CarrTeddy BridgewaterJimmy GarropoloTom SavageKeith Wenning and Johnny Manziel.

If the Browns get it right, they shouldn’t have to worry about drafting another quarterback for at least a decade. (Imagine a world where we don’t have to talk about Browns quarterbacks every year.)

And if they get it wrong? Well, the secondary market for Browns quarterbacks in the NFL has turned into an especially fruitful one.

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From the editor’s notebook …

tribe carrasco twinsIt was a rough start to the home portion of the 2014 schedule for the Cleveland Indians.

In dropping two-of-three to the Minnesota Twins who are not … very good … the Tribe was done in by its starting pitching and lack of clutch hitting.

Danny Salazar had the best start of the weekend, even through the struggled through 5.2 innings of work in Friday’s home opener. While he gave up seven hits, Salazar managed to find a way to hold the Twins to just two runs and give the offense time to rally.

Carlos Carrasco had his own issues on Saturday, but unlike Salazar, Carrasco doesn’t have the makeup to work himself out of problems. Carrasco followed Salazar’s lead by working just 5.2 innings and giving up seven hits, but he couldn’t keep the Twins off the scoreboard in giving up five runs (four earned).

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Four the hard way

anniversary 4Today marks the four-year anniversary of the launch of our site.

As a lifelong Cleveland fan, we knew what we were getting into when we decided to get the voices out of our head and put them down on (virtual) paper. But even by the standards of Cleveland sports, it’s been an interesting four years.

Consider that since we made our maiden post:

  • The Browns have gone 18-46 (a .281 winning percentage), are on their fourth head coach and fourth front office combination, and have had seven different starting quarterbacks.
  • The Cavs are 90-210 and counting (a .300 winning percentage), have had three coaches (counting Mike Brown twice) and just as many general managers, had an NBA record 26-game losing streak, and have yet to post a winning record despite drafting four players in the top four of the NBA Draft – two of which were the No. 1 overall pick.
  • The Indians have gone 309-339 while employing two different managers. The Tribe is the only team of the three to have a winning season and a playoff appearance – which they promptly lost.

More than just wins and losses, though, is the fact that writing has made us enjoy sports even more. Having an outlet to vent after the never-ending losses and personnel moves has helped us learn to not carry around another dismal performance by the local sports teams. We’ve also tried to develop a different perspective on what – and most importantly why – the Browns, Indians and Cavs are doing what they are doing.

A big part of how we have been able to do that is through the people we have met – either in person or in the online world – since we started the site (if the analytics are to be believed, we’ve had visitors from 154 different countries). We’ve been fortunate enough to meet some cool people (you know who you are) and our interactions with everyone has opened up our thinking and helped redefine, in a good way, how we look at sports.

And for that we say “thanks!”

So what’s next?

The Indians open up the season next week and will try and build on last season’s 92-win team that finished the season strong and made the playoffs. The Cavs are heading into the “most important off-season” since, well, the last one. And the Browns have (yet another) new coach and (yet another) new front office and the annual hope of the NFL Draft.

In other words, just another year in the life of a Cleveland sports fan.

(Photo by Getty Images)

Are Pro Days really that important? – Part 2

johnny manziel pro dayA few days ago we raised the question of whether or not there is any real value in attending a college player’s Pro Day.

That was in response to the reaction from a few members of the local media who were furiously trying to manufacture a controversy because Cleveland Browns general manager Ray Farmer and the team’s scouts were attending the various Pro Days – rather than head coach Mike Pettine and offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan.

We thought about that today at the gym while watching ESPN’s coverage of quarterback Johnny Manziel’s Pro Day at Texas A&M. After watching Manziel do his thing, we came away with two indisputable conclusions.

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Mark Sanchez? No thanks. DeSean Jackson? Maybe.

browns mark sanchezThe New York Jets made it official on Friday, releasing Mark Sanchez, their one-time franchise quarterback.

Yes, Sanchez led the Jets to the AFC Championship Game his first two years in the league. In the process, he won four road playoff games – or twice as many as the Cleveland Browns have won since joining the NFL in 1950.

The Jets won with Sanchez when they had a dominant defense and a strong running game – limiting what he needed to do on the field.

Yes, the Browns are working to build a dominant defense and, with the signing last week of Ben Tate, have remembered that you still need to run the ball, even in today’s NFL.

And, yes, the Browns are in the market for a quarterback, with just Brian Hoyer and Alex Tanney currently on the roster.

But there is no way the Browns should consider bringing Sanchez to town.

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