Red Right 88

In Cleveland, hope dies last

Is there help out there for Browns D-line?

While the Browns went a long way to addressing their defensive line needs in the draft by selecting defensive tackle Phil Taylor and defensive end Jabaal Sheard, there is still work to be done.

When (if? someday?) the NFL lockout ends, how good would defensive end Ray Edwards look in Orange & Brown?

Edwards, 26, recorded 16.5 sacks over the past two seasons in Minnesota. Of course, opposing offensives also had to worry about defensive end Jared Allen, but that’s still an impressive number.

The Vikings tendered a one-year qualifying offer to Edwards in March, so depending on how the labor situation works out, the Browns might have to pay some sort of compensation to the Vikings if they were interested and signed Edwards.

They did the same in 2010 with a first-round tender, so it seems reasonable that they would have done the same this year, which means the Browns would have to give up a first-round pick if they offered Edwards a contract that Minnesota declined to match.

Of course, the Browns do hold two first-round picks for next year …

While Edwards is certainly someone to keep an eye on, we’ll take a pass on bust Vernon Gholston. If Rex Ryan, who knows something about defense and motivating players, couldn’t get anything out of Gholston the past two years, it seems unlikely anyone can.

***

Saturday is the Champions League final between Manchester United and Barcelona.

United’s Nemanja Vidic is ready for the match after United celebrated its 19th league title on Sunday.

“We have to come down after this excitement,” the Man U captain told the Daily Mail. “We have to prepare as best as we can for Barcelona. We are celebrating but everyone is thinking about the next game. It is the biggest game of the whole year. We know what it feels like to go to the final and lose. It was one of the saddest moments of my career.”

Of course, Barcelona has to get to Wembley first, as a volcanic ash cloud could disrupt the team’s travel plans.

Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola ruled out the possibility of UEFA postponing the game against Manchester United at Wembley, insisting the club will do what the experts advise – even if that means flying on Tuesday, two days ahead of schedule.

“We hope the volcano stays asleep for a few more days and allows our fans to get there,” Guardiola told The Guardian. “We will do what [the experts] tell us to do. If that means travelling on Wednesday or even tomorrow then so be it. If not, we will travel on Thursday as originally planned. If they say don’t worry, we’ll relax; if they say get a move on, we will. What they say we will do, we will do. We will try to plan as far ahead as possible.”

And we thought the Indians getting rained out was a pain.

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