Home » Browns » Browns punt 2013 » Banner to Browns fans: EFF YOU; National Wags to Browns fans: Smarten up and be patient longer.

Banner to Browns fans: EFF YOU; National Wags to Browns fans: Smarten up and be patient longer.


Skins get mobile QB now with blown ACL.
Rams get Michael Brockers + Janoris Jenkins + Isaiah Pead + Alec Ogletree + Stedman Bailey + Skins’ 2014 first round pick.
Remarkably, most think the Skins won that trade.
Remarkably, some still think the Browns whiffed on this deal.
This is one of the many ways betting everything on a first round QB can go wrong.


Looking for at least one post that doesn’t tell you how fucking smart Joe Banner is?  Just one write-up that doesn’t tell you, Mr. Browns Fan, that you’re a petulant child for expecting a competitive team this year?  One piece that calls bullshit on the Banner regime’s performance to date?  And what in the hell does the Carmen Policy era have to do with any of this???

Look no further.

Three items today and I’ll sum up the Kanick take up top for you:

  1. Trent Richardson trade.  (Yes, it’s good value.  Don’t care.  You punted the season and didn’t have to.)
  2. National types and local schoolmarms telling us a 1-15 season is smart.  (General disdain for media lapdogs telling every Browns fan who expected a season of improvement that we’re idiots for being pissed.)
  3. Since when did a high draft pick become a guarantee of team success?  (The myth of magical first round QBs exposed.)

Richardson trade *is* good value.  But that’s not the problem here.

I actually think Browns got good value on T-Rich.  I haven’t been a Richardson fan and I’ve pointed out why on several occasions.  Basically, I think he runs soft.   Got no Beast Mode.  Stops before contact.  Been like this since his Bama days.  See below and below that.

So I’m ok with the value received in return for the trade.  I would also say the Browns got good value on their auction of 2012 draft picks.  Browns also have an efficient payroll structure as demonstrated by their $25M in cap space.

None of these “good management practices” add up to even an attempt at winning football in 2013 and thus these “smart moves” amount to a steaming crap in the middle of the Munilot.  All of these moves say, “We assume you will continue coming to losing games because we’ve improved the ‘fan experience.'”  Banner don’t care if he wins this year, next year, or the year after that.  (Has anyone heard a timetable or a tangible goal for this organization?)  All I read is that he has to get ‘his own guys’ on the roster like that’s normal.  (He’s no Don Shula.*)  To expect him to win Heckert’s guys is unreasonable.

I say bullshit.

Don’t think the Browns could have competed this year?  Really?

Think again.

You know how this could have played out in 2013?  If Berea actually wanted to win this year?  If Berea actually gave a more fucks about their fans than their god damn office furniture and the murals, my god, the murals?


Would you look at how proud he is?

Because this is a formula that was available to Banner thanks to the pristine salary structure bequeathed him by Tom Heckert.  It goes like this:

You had six holes (CB2, OG, LB, FS, TE, FB), they’re now all patched.  You’ve got your o-line set for the next five years.  You’ve got two lock-down CBs.  You’ve added speed at LB.  You’ve got a playmaking TE.  And you’ve got your QB.

Tell me that’s not a playoff team.

How hard was that?

This is not me second guessing.  Most of those moves we proposed here at the time.  (Ok I was not an EJ Manuel fan.)  (But the Browns had him in for a workout, so how’d they miss/pass on him?  And why hasn’t anyone asked?)

And it’s not like there’s no precedent for one year tranformations.  Here’s the list of teams who went from below .500 to the Super Bowl in the next year:

  • 2000 Pats, 5-11; 2001 SB Champs
  • 1998 Rams, 4-12; 1999 SB Champs
  • 1980 Niners, 6-10; 1981 SB Champs
  • 2002 Panthers, 7-9; 2003 SB loser
  • 1999 Giants, 7-9; 2000 SB loser
  • 1997 Falcons, 7-9; 1998 SB loser
  • 1995 Pats, 6-10; 1996 SB loser
  • 1987 Bengals, 4-11; 1988 SB loser
  • 1980 Bengals, 6-10; 1981 SB loser

Haven’t looked it up but take that list x10 for ‘below .500 teams who make playoffs next year.’  But of course those teams actually tried to win in the year after their bad one.  And they sure wouldn’t have gotten their belly rubbed if they tanked their season.

So why does Banner get a free pass?  What the HELL has Banner ever done to deserve the slack he’s been cut?  I don’t know.

“The Browns are going to go 1-15 this year, but their fans should cheer like it is 15-1” and other asinine national takes.

But slack he is cut.

Inevitably, the national wags are weighing in on how smart this is.  Fuck.  Them.  They haven’t watched the most boring team in pro football since 2008 and they won’t be watching them this year.  WE WILL.  So they can fuck off with their measured responses on how smart Banner is.  He’s not football smart; he’s not people smart.  He’s manipulative smart maybe because lookit:  he’s got national writers telling fans to give him an indefinite time frame for this reboot on the promise that it will get better.  Like we haven’t heard this story before.

We.  Know.  Better.


“1-15 just to be safe.”
Yes Browns fans, we’re being told that our competition with these uniforms is a good thing.

It does not get better.  It stays the same.  In order to win, you have to try to win.  Now.  Trying to win in the next five years has produced 14 years of shit.  One playoff road loss in fourteen fucking years.  So just FUCK OFF national media.  Fuck off with how smart Banner is.

I mean, look at what this asshole at USA Today says.

… presuming the Browns tank their way to a Top 3 pick (2-14! Better yet: 1-15, just to be safe!) and presuming the Colts get enough productivity from Richardson to finish within the periphery of the playoffs, turning the Browns’ pick into somewhere between Nos. 17-22.

How about Jadeveon Clowney and Johnny Manziel?

I do not like the sound of that, ASSHOLE.  We just fucking signed three fucking pass rush FAs and used our fucking 6th pick on another one, ASSHOLE.

And no thanks on another over-hyped Texas QB.


What. The.  Fuck.  is wrong with these d-bags who fly by with these clueless Browns takes.

Slack granted even from our own fans.

But it’s not just national guys.  Look at these Stockholm Syndrome Browns fan tweets.  Good lord, they’re signing on to another three years of suck on the promise that maybe it’ll be different from the last four regimes who promised good things if we’d just wait through three years of suck.

Camen Policy has nothing to do with the 2013 roster.  It is irrelevant.

It is this complacency that enables the continual acceptance of mediocrity.  Scratch that, we’re not mediocre.  We’re the fucking Jaguars in better uniforms.  (For now.)

Yes, I get that we’re stuck with them.  I mean, can I do anything about it?  No.  Wait.  Maybe.  I mean I gave them the freaking roadmap, all they had to do was read my blog.  But even if I can’t effect change for the Browns, I’m not going to sit quietly for this blown season.  I’m damn sure not going to applaud.

If I’m completely honest, I’ll probably be actively rooting against them.  Berea hates me?  I’ll hate them right back.


Draft a QB in the top ten.  What could possibly go wrong with that plan?

The myth of the first round QB.

All these smartness assessments are predicated on the presumption that you just draft yourself Peyton Manning or Andrew Luck and sail merrily along.  THAT IS NOT HOW IT WORKS.  What is with national d-bags selling the myth of deferred gratification to us?  TO US???  Like we haven’t been down this road before?

But damn, they close ranks tight.

Here’s Dane Brugler.  He’s a draft guy and a decent one.  He wants you to know he’s one of us.  Wants you to know things will get better in some indefinite timeframe somewhere sometime blah, blah, blah.

Are the Browns throwing up the white flag after two games already?  Easy to say so, but this trade was about one thing: the chance to get better.

Easy to say so?  Then SAY SO.  The answer, Dane, is yes.  Yes they are throwing up the white flag.  You say you’re one of us, but you’re not one of us.  I doubt you got anywhere close to the Browns/Ravens game last week and –quick– who do the Browns play this weekend and will you be watching?

But then he goes on to trot out the myth of a ‘sure-thing QB’ in the draft:

After all, this is a quarterback league.  Looking forward to the quarterbacks who could be available for the 2014 NFL Draft, Teddy Bridgewater, Brett Hundley and Marcus Mariota all project highly to the next level, but all are underclassmen and there is no guarantee they’ll be available next May.

The ONLY guarantee, Dane, is that tanking a season will yield more shitty football for the Browns.  Like.. you’re the draft guy.  JaMarcus Russell?  Vince Young?  Do these names ring any bells?  Here, I’ll help.  These are the first round QBs since 2007 and my call on whether they’re cutting it:

EJ Manuel – push Andrew Luck – good Robert Griffin III – push Matthew Stafford – push
Ryan Tannehill – push Brandon Weeden – bad Cam Newton – push Matt Ryan – good
Jake Locker – push Blaine Gabbert – bad Christian Ponder – push Brady Quinn – bad
Sam Bradford – good Tim Tebow – bad Joe Flacco – good JaMarcus Russell – bad
Mark Sanchez – bad Josh Freeman – push

That’s a record of 4-6-8 or 44% chance of getting a good QB.  Hardly the guarantee Browns fans are being sold.  Don’t like that stat?  Want to go with a top ten picks for the last ten years?

Andrew Luck – good Robert Griffin III – push Ryan Tannehill – push Cam Newton – push
Jake Locker – push Blaine Gabbert – bad Sam Bradford – good Matthew Stafford – push
Mark Sanchez – bad Matt Ryan – good JaMarcus Russell – bad Vince Young – bad
Matt Leinart – bad Alex Smith – push Eli Manning – good Philip Rivers – good
Carson Palmer – push Byron Leftwich – push

That’s 5-5-8 or 50%.

So we’re tanking this season for a 50% chance of getting a good QB.

I’ll even take you through it in the opposite direction.  Here are last year’s top five QBs (by passing yards):

  1. Brees (2nd round);
  2. Stafford (#1 overall);
  3. Romo (undrafted);
  4. Brady (6th rd);
  5. Ryan (#3 overall).

And we haven’t even talked about Kaepernick (2nd rd) or Wilson (3rd rd).

The “tank the season for your franchise quarterback” strategy is magic beans.


Reigning NFL Exec of the Year Ryan Grigson says “No thanks” to regression.
(And says yes to shopping at Joe Banner’s auction.)

Just try to find a national wag who will step up and say that’s not great odds and Browns fans are getting porked by their front office again.  Won’t happen.  If I gave away t-shirts, I’d give away a t-shirt to the guy who can find a paid national writer (or even a local one) who tells Browns fans what they already know:  Banner is porking you.

And then there’s Jason La Canfora.

Of course this ball washer is humping Banner’s leg again.  Blaming the other guys as usual.  Heaven forfend that the Banner regime should have to use any of existing resources, any of Heckert’s players.  That’s just not done.  No, they must bring in their own players, their own defensive system, and Browns fans.. you just go wait quietly in the corner for the next three, four years while we wise national media types tell you how smart this all is.  Here’s a cherry picked quote from an anonymous scout:

“A first for an adequate back with injury issues?  They could get that player next year in the mid to late rounds. Get an adequate dude for a later pick.  Everyone has depth at that position.”

I know Mr. Anonymous Scout, it’s sooo weird that a team (Colts) is trying actually to win this year.  What morons, huh?  And of course everyone knows the Colts are –repeat after me– due to regress this year.  If you don’t believe Barnwell and everyone else at Grantland, then check out this laughable excuse for a prediction on the Colts’ record:  “PredictionMachine.com projects the Colts to finish tied for the fifth-worst record in the league with Minnesota and Oakland.


**Cackles and rolls a blunt.**


HAHAHAHA.  Colts will be in the playoffs this year.   I’m stuck with my turd Browns.

It’s fucking September and we’re playing for next May.


Your move Alex Mack.

If I’m Alex Mack, I’ve got my hand raised:  trade me next because I’m sure as shit not re-signing for more of this shit show.

Meantime, Joe Banner still sits on $27M in cap space; $14M of which is rollover from 2012 and not available** for use next year.  If you’re not making a run at Jay Cutler with that cash, you’re dead to me.

Screen Shot 2013-09-19 at 1.27.39 PM


LeCharles Bentley gets it.

His interview on Bull and Fox is on the money and worth a listen.


* This all reminds me of the famous Bum Phillips quote regarding Don Shula:  “He can take his’n and beat your’n and take your’n and beat his’n.”

** Didn’t know that 2012 cap rollover vanishes at the end of the year?  Here’s the link.

Does it continue to rollover like cellphone minutes?
No.  Rollover money from 2012 into 2013 is treated as “adjusted cap.”  Any unused “adjusted” money in 2013 cannot be rolled over again into 2014.


  1. […] wrote a post Thursday/Friday that was triggered by the Trent Richardson trade.  It was emotional, hot, angry, pleading, salty. […]

  2. Beef says:

    After this trade, I kept checking here for your response, as for the most part you’re the only credible guy writing about the Browns who would rather make purely honest observations about the emperor wearing no clothes than just keep sucking on HasLomBanner’s rod in order to ensure continued access to the official bootlicking line of reporters they’ll actually take questions from (although DK probably rates here too). And you didn’t disappoint, as usual – nice layout of valid facts. I keep watching the national talking heads batting this thing around, and not once, NOT ONCE, has a single yakker called them out for any of the points you’ve made here, ALL of which should be raised. But it’s the same with the national media as it is with the local media – criticize the product, especially THE NFL (trumpets blaring bombastically!) – and you’ll get shut down and out and be left looking for work (Grossi, anyone?). So a suggestion – since you’re not a credentialed reporter or columnist with any sports organization, why not contact espn and ask them for a guest appearance on one of their shows, as a Browns fan who wants to stand up for Browns fans in the face of the national media backhanded smackdown of said fans. The Official Browns Fans Ombudsman! Because you are absolutely right – without the national media raising or addressing any of your points in the dialogue over what’s happening in this Factory of Sadness, but in fact even having the brass balls to tell us what a good thing this new regime is doing for us, that national media – as well as the local PR flaks (MKC, anyone?) – are pissing on us while telling us it’s raining. Of course we all know they wouldn’t even acknowledge such an overture – it’s espn after all, the WORLDWIDE LEADER IN SPORTS!! WE KNOW EVERYTHING, YOU KNOW NOTHING!! – but honestly, your trying to do something like that and keeping us up to date on how the effort is going would be far more interesting reading than catching another softball from the usual wags about on how Hoyer is actually capable of throwing a very crisp deep ball even though he isn’t blessed with tremendous arm strength.

    My personal pet peeve point (my Four-P) out of all of the Browns media/PR bullshit this year – Weeden has been getting HAMMERED constantly, due in no small part to the pocket getting shoved up the middle right into his face; the RBs are getting nowhere, to the point Norv isn’t even calling runs that much anymore. And through it all, the Media Machine keeps saying how Cousins is just trying to hold the fort until Pinkston and/or Lauvao get back – why hasn’t a single writer/columnist/talking head pointed out the fact that Pinkston and Lauvao were the two worst fucking guards in the league last year, and their return won’t mean shit!

    Keep truckin’, Kanick…

  3. Zarathustra says:

    I’m going to check out here. I again sincerely thank you sir for your contributions to the Cleveland sports conversation. So to sum up:
    1.) it was a mistake to draft Richardson number 3 overall, but correcting said mistake by receiving good value in a first round pick is unforgivable.
    2.) the browns failed to implement your offseason plan (which somehow would net them both ogle tree and e.j. Manuel) even though you cannot cite one example of a successful franchise implementing anything close to said plan in year one of a front office/coaching staff. Packers? Giants? Steelers? Nope. Not a single example. There is precedence for such a plan however. We saw in here with butch Davis. The redskins under Dan Snyder have done it a few times. But no successful teams.
    3.) banner/Lombardi are not up to the task because they did not sign the correct players in the offseason. Never mind that many of their singnings have provided nice contributions thus far.
    4.) though not a single failed move by banner/Lombardi can be cited they are far worse than Tom heckert, who was responsible for several blunders. By your own admission blowing not one but two first draft picks last year heckert is greater than Lombardi whose only pick has looked good in limited action. This even though Lombardi correctly panned heckert’s ’12 draft blunders.
    5.) tanking by banner/Lombardi is unforgivable and has you questioning your allegiance. Heckert trotting out colt McCoy and Seneca Wallace in ’11 was not tanking and you were ok with because heckert=good Lombardi=bad.

    • jimkanicki says:

      Yes this is a wholly accurate representative of the above post.

      And good day to you sir.

    • Something that very few people are addressing is the idea that Banner and Lombardi have never successfully drafted and/or built an NFL franchise. Yes, getting extra draft picks is ideal for a “rebuilding” team. But, it’s worth stating the OBVIOUS:

      1. Banner was the organizational and salary cap guy in Philadelphia. Andy Reid drafted the players.
      2. Lombardi’s biggest skill is attaching himself to great football minds and identifying the best players on the best teams in the league (“blue chippers!”)

      This mostly explains why people feel the offseason was such a smashing success. Lombardi identified some good NFL talent and Banner signed them to team-friendly deals. This is good.

      But an entire draft?

      Especially one that will have a staggering amount of importance attached to it?

      Not to mention, Banner and Lombardi have already dug themselves a hole by producing a one-player 2013 draft.

      Anyway, something else I’m not seeing is that Richardson was probably only the beginning of this new reboot. I can’t imagine Gordon, Little, Schwartz, Weeden (obvious), Lauvao, Pinkston, etc. survive into 2014 and beyond. Not to mention Mack, Rubin, Ward and possibly even Haden.

      For those who didn’t figure this out way back in January, we’re in the beginning stages of a total reset. Just like Savage wiped out Davis and Mangini wiped out Savage and Heckert wiped out Mangini, and so on and so on.

      Of course, the FO and PD did enough of a sell job to sucker everyone back into another season.

      Great job, everybody. Keep believing.

      ****A few years ago after the 2011 draft, I wrote something on how Phil Taylor would be a versatile player for the Browns, given how he could play multiple schemes = the Browns usually change coaches and schemes every two years.

      I wasn’t joking at all – and I’m sure Taylor will fit effortlessly into the 2015 4-3 scheme.

      • jimkanicki says:

        I miss Randy Lerner.

      • danz says:

        Well I understand this sentiment, we really do not know how they are going to do. But really, what is the alternative? At least you can kind of see a plan (at least with the QB situation, which is all that matters) and they are executing it. We have not seen that in any other regime (Holmgren stands out here).

        Look, the only way to look at their upcoming drafting is wait and see. We don’t know how they are going to do, and it would be foolish to guarantee one way or the other that they are totally going to shit the bed or knock it out of the park. We just have to hope that they do it right. And if it doesnt work out (again), well I guess we will have to reevaluate our fandom again, just like I feel alot of people are doing right now.

        For me, I think this will be the last one. If they do not hit on the picks and we are doing this again in three years, I think I will pick a new team and finally, mercifully put my Browns fandom out of its misery.

        I will say though that if they are trying to tank the season, I am kind of encouraged for the prospect of being as close to the number one pick as possible. At least that way they have a better chance of not screwing it up as usually the best players in the draft become apparent by the time we get to it.

    • go tribe says:

      Here we go. You enjoy the rest of this shit filled season on your couch shoving perogis down your gullet. I personally enjoy that someone is calling everyone out for what it is… quitting time, time to go fishing while we will still make big money off of these retarded browns fans who will continue to watch across the globe. Not me, im out at least for this year. This shit makes me sick. Hey maybe we can draft another notre dame qb!!! That would be sweet, or better yet the panthers cut jimmy clausen… get haslombanners dong out of you before responding in favor of this garbage.

  4. mgbode says:

    glad to see that you were okay. when you went “radio silent” after the trade, I figured you were either busy writing this post or dead. very happy to see the post.

    Here is my response to anyone who is defending the trade and claiming the FO did not pull out that rug:

    you have owners saying that they are the most impatient and aggressive people in the world, you have the team president saying he’ll be massively disappointed if we don’t make the playoffs THIS year.

    “We could if we just made whatever sacrifices we need to be the best possible team we could be next year, we probably could make the playoffs. In fact, I’d be massively disappointed if we didn’t. ”

    also, you had that same team president saying there wouldn’t be the massive overturn of a roster that we have had in the past:

    “I also believe that there’s a core here and I’d be surprised if we hireda head coach that didn’t see the same thing from which we can consider ourselves kind of having a core or foundation from which we can move forward.”


    look, they did their jobs. they did a nice PR stint and they got people to renew their season tickets and they got people caring about the offseason of the Browns.

    we saw some strange things where we had all this cap room and didn’t address depth in certain spots, traded away draft picks to bank future ones when we need players now too, and the like. but, overall, it seemed like we “could” be better this season.

    now, they pull the rug after only 2 games (in which we were competitive). it’s a tough pill to swallow.

    the scary thing is if in a few years, something like this happens again and noone gets emotional.

    • mgbode says:

      the one part that I disagree with you on is the QB part. look at the top10 QBs who busted.

      Locker (yeah, I say bust), Gabbert, Sanchez, Leinart, Russell, VY (though decent argument made for making him a push — he was a game manager QB, but a pretty decent one until he lost his mind)

      Only Leinart of the above wasn’t given the tag of “developmental” QB, which is code for he’s going to suck but someone is going to think they can fix him. Rodgers was the same way (and I firmly believe would have busted if he didn’t luck into the GB-situation and have 3 years to rework his mechanics in the shadows).

      And, Leinart was the “Heisman-QB” who had a supporting cast make him look better than he really was (read: AJ McCarron, Aaron Murray this year). Scouts, fans, NFL GMs have gotten better at figuring this out.

      So, I think that we can reasonably figure on guys who are separate from the standard QB draft pick. Going by the scouting reports, Bridgewater is that guy (and he sure was last year, wish he had better chances to show his stuff this year).

      Before the season, I was hoping for Hundley because he’s a very good QB who should have been there in the mid-teens. Well, he’s looked even better and is now joining Bridgewater and Boyd in the top10. Bridgewater IS the pre-eminent talent in this draft. I want to downgrade him because of his competition, but he is really, really good. And, I actually like Boyd just as much. I was worried that Hopkins was making him look better than he was last year, but he really only has Watkins this year and he’s still throwing lasers all over the field. I’m also willing to consider Mariota.

      I don’t even think we should consider any other QB. If we don’t get one of those 4 guys, then this waste of a season was a complete failure in my eyes (unless something crazy happens in the next few months to change my mind).

      • acto says:

        A recycled QB trumps anyone in this draft.
        The Browns received terrific value for a player they never should have drafted. I do not see this as tanking this season, the season may have already been lost and a marginal running back with happy feet would not change anything. The Browns won this trade by a large margin.
        And there are three retread QB’s that should be available for next year that are better than anyone they could get in the draft, except perhaps for my sleeper to be announced later.

        • jimkanicki says:

          the only retread i’d be jazzed about is cutler.
          i’m very ‘meh’ on freeman.
          i’m very YES ABSOLUTELY on cutler.

          • acto says:

            Cutler is a fighter and a great choice, but there are 1, perhaps 2 who are better and less expensive.
            I would however, be very pleased with Cutler. Please do not forget about Weeden. In a few years Weeden will “get it” and he will be ready to be a franchise QB. He will only be 53 years old and ready to roll.

        • mgbode says:

          there are zero retread QBs that I am interested in banking our franchise on. Cutler is the only currently starting QB who is a UFA after this season. With the current track of Chicago’s season, I am skeptical that they let him leave.


          I have no desire to tie our franchise to Freeman (who is not a FA but likely available).

          I do like Rivers, but he’ll be 33yo next year and he’s been on the decline the past few years (though his weapons were also taken from him).

          I would much prefer getting one of the college QBs.

    • Zarathustra says:

      so they were competitive after two games and now by starting hoyer over campbell and replacing richardson (3.6 ypc) with McGahee (4.4 ypc in ’12; 4.8 in ’11) they are tanking?

      • humboldt says:

        I’m sure you know that your YPC comparison is a straw man, and that this statistic is reflective of many factors beyond the running back (coaching, system, o-line, skill players, etc). The Browns front office has unequivocally made themselves less competitive by getting rid of Richardson and installing backs w/ less talent, experience, knowledge of the offense, etc.

        It is to the credit of parity in the NFL that we can even have any delusions of still winning games this year with Hoyer/Rainey/McGahee/OB in the backfield. However, we have seen this movie for the last ten years – inferior talent simply loses games in the NFL. Packing your roster with inferior talent, and not making any attempt to upgrade in the offseason, is a great way to position yourself to land a potential franchise QB. But as mgbode well articulates above, the problem is the duplicity of the front office, which sold us a bill of goods about being impatient & competitive this year.

        • jimkanicki says:

          Thanks for the benefit of the doubt, indeed yes I know. But YPC was what the ESPN stats defaulted to and it fit my narrative perfectly so I stopped there.

          • humboldt says:

            Jim, thanks for your yeoman’s work on here. I don’t just mean this article, but the whole enterprise.

            When I unpack my disdain for the Browns leadership, a significant portion of it is due to the fact that many of us – despite having no shortage of other responsibilities and commitments in our lives – devote formidable time and mental/emotional bandwidth to this team throughout the year. And then, on an otherwise uneventful September evening, a few high-paid assholes in Berea pull out the rug, a season is lost, and all of the intelligent, thoughtful commentary, debate, and intellectual labor, not to mention our collective reserves of hope invested in the season, are essentially trivialized.

            Anyway, that’s a longwinded way of saying to you – and others – that I appreciate your insightful work, and hope we can summon up the reserves to remain resilient as a community through this difficult and divisive stretch as fans.

          • acto says:

            jk, you called it before with TRIch’s hesitancy/pussyfooting. Perhaps he shall become more confident and flourish as a Colt, he has the talent, but he was a liability in Cleveland.
            (Please do not take this as an endorsement of the current regime, the Colts called them and they were not completely ignorant this time.)

        • Zarathustra says:

          Ok. Yards per carry is a total straw man. By what metric would like to measure richardson’s performance? My eyes agree with kanicki’s assessment of lacking beast mode and stopping before contact. Ypc seems to validate this assessment. I’m interested in your statistics that suggest otherwise.
          What inferior talent have they added to the roster this year?

          • humboldt says:

            So speaking of eye-tests, you believe Bobby Rainey and a hobbled Willis McGahee represent an upgrade of Trent Richardson? Do you think they’ll exceed his 11 touchdowns from last year?

            I agree w/ the assessment that Richardson is a middling back, btw. But to argue that these other guys are an upgrade is insane.

            • Zarathustra says:

              Ok. So yards per carry is a straw man, but TOUCHDOWNS aren’t? Really???
              So Richardson is a middling back and they got a first round pick for him. You are upset about this? They are replacing a middling back with another middling back. Doing so will likely have little effect on the season win total, but you are angry because of what you believe they signaling to you?
              Above you stated they have packed the roster with inferior talent, please cite an example

              • mgbode says:

                what happens to an old RB’s YPC when you rip apart his MCL, give him a compression fracture of the knee and then put him behind a worse run-blocking OL with no passing game for the defense to fear instead of Peyton Manning?

                please, explain.

      • mgbode says:

        just in case you didn’t know, McGahee’s knee/leg blew up last year ending his season (and until the Browns saved him seemingly his career). I wouldn’t expect him to achieve those YPC numbers even if he were still on the Broncos in the same circumstances (let alone ours).

    • jimkanicki says:

      lol, i was all heads down on this thing. i see the 255 comments on craig’s post, kinda glad i missed the discussion.

      • mgbode says:

        very little discussion on that one. mostly loud noises and such. the discussion happened on the 10x associated threads when people settled down (but just a little bit).


    • manc says:

      Your last comment is pretty apt. Fan apathy and tarps are the next step for the Browns is Banner and Lombardi fail. And there’s nothing in their personnel, talent evaluation backgrounds that suggest that these guys are going to succeed.

      I hope I’m wrong. Browns fans deserve a lot more than this.

      • Bilbunt says:

        This post is key. Banner is playing fantasy/Madden football with a real franchise. He hired a new GM nobody wanted and a new coach nobody wanted to agree with his personnel assessments. The only draft where he was in control did not produce a starter on a team where nine undrafted free agents made the final roster. The point is not the trade. The point is that Banner is Jerry Jones without having to invest his money. He is playing fantasy football on somebody else’s dime.

        • jpftribe says:

          Agreed here, the 13 draft is a really big concern.

          Kruger and Bryant signings look good though, and Bess maybe a good one as well. This is the knock on Lombardi tho. Good at evaluation of other teams players but clueless in the draft. Ray Farmer isn’t exactly covered in glory here either.

    • The “wait and see” argument doesn’t work anymore. Neither does the “wait and draft” argument. There is a serious disconnect in that Browns’ fans don’t realize that this FO has already PASSED on one draft. 2013 is a ONE PLAYER draft. This cannot sustain a rebuilding team.

      Yet, the presumed philosophy of rebuilding is about the draft.

      This FO is already one year behind. That puts a tremendous amount of pressure on next year’s draft.

      What I’m envisioning is another huge media and PR blitz selling next year’s draft – only the FO will again pull the rug out from under Browns’ fans. It’s amazing that more people don’t realize what’s actually going on in Berea. Every bit of the last regime’s work is going to be replaced – which means there is going to be some serious RE-drafting over the next 2-3 years.

      To use Kanicki’s thinking (which I mostly agree with), the Browns are going from 6 holes to about 12.

      Yet in the span of THREE f-ing days, most Browns’ fans have already fallen for the newest spin – that this is all part of some master plan and that Banner and Lombardi are going to magically draft a Super Bowl winner next April.

      I get the “tortured” fan base bit. But how about some credit for being among the most gullible fans in the league?

      Wake the f- up.

      • jpftribe says:

        I hear ya, but what if they are right? What if they think they really have 18 holes, not 6?

        Other than Thomas, Mack, maybe Gordon, maybe Schwartz, everything else has been suspect, so there’s 7-9.

        Defense there is Rubin, Winn, Hayden, Taylor, Hughes, Jackson. You can say they created the Sheard uncertainty by changing the defense, that is still 4-5 defensive starters. So anywhere from 11-14 starters are legitimately suspect. That is a lot of rebuilding to do, and it is what it is.

        • Petefranklin says:

          They obviously dont care for Mack. I doubt they see Rubin in their plans, god bless him I hope he gets a ring somewhere, N.E. maybe? Look for Jackson to get cut too as he is too old and makes too much.

  5. Petefranklin says:

    I heard on sports talk out here, where you can actually learn things, that the coaching staff didn’t like the type of back that TRich was. I guess he didn’t fit the new offense, what a fucking joke!!.Why the fuck doesn’t the new owner stop sucking Jerry Jones dick and hire someone to make winners out of whos on the team now? Why does that someone hire a yes man no nothing TV doosh as GM? Why does that no nothing doosh take the spring off and not draft anyone? Why are those dummies so stupid not to realize that their very high (in each round) picks should be worth a TWO ROUND upgrade…bird in hand and all. Why the fuck do you hire a coach who cant work with your best offensive weapon to mask the QB’s difficulties? WHY??? BECAUSE HASLEM FUCKING SUCKS.

    When I was a boy my pops rooted for the Bengals when they played the Browns. I knew why then but I really know why now. Art Modell was the devil before he moved for firing Paul Brown. Meet the new boss, better yet new boss meet me and a big FUCK YOU to you too! At least you haven’t made a nickel off of me because I refuse to buy your crap that you sell for golden prices. My browns gear….all from China…yeah bootleg and you don’t see a dime of it.

    I’m telling you guys this team is just a pawn to make the league money. For every winning team you need a losing team. Winning teams make money but so do losing ones, so why should they care. I don’t. Yeah it was a good deal but it buys these assholes time that they shouldn’t have and the pick will be fucked up anyway. Oakland is still paying for Dumbo’s mistakes, but at least Raider fans still care.

  6. Now that Matt Carson has put a smile on my face a few thoughts…

    – Banner made it evident they were tanking the season by their actions all summer.

    – I love this move because there is no way in hell anyone is giving us a #1 for Trent if he kept playing. I don’t quite understand what the Colts are doing here but if they want to basically give us a do over on the Trent pick I say thanks.

    – All of the things that they could have done in the offseason are nice but Weeden would still be the QB…and as a former member of the Weeden fan club that guy is not getting you to 8 wins.

    – The thing I actually look forward to seeing with Hoyer on Sunday is how many times he gets hit and how he avoids pressure. Brandon Weeden has this unreal ability to move INTO rushers instead of stepping up in pocket or shifting from side to side. I can’t count how many times this year that Schwartz or Thomas pushes a guy upfield and Brandon keeps dropping back right into it.

    – After I have had a day to think about all of this…it is one damn player…and one who was not producing at all…and we got a future #1 for him. At the end of the day is Hoyer and Willis really that big of a drop off from Weeden and Trent?

    – They need a QB this offseason and the correct answer is Jay Cutler. Otherwise we have to roll the dice on a Boyd or a Bridgewater and hope they pick right.

    It’s really not all that bad…the scary thing is that they could still win 4-6 games just on the defense alone. Maybe I’m just an eternal optimist or MATT FUCKING CARSON has me in good mood.

    • bupalos says:

      I totally agree with all of this, except it’s not a full mulligan on the pick, we get 6M signing bonus accelerated off next year’s cap, which sucks.

      Also agree heartily on MATT FUCKING CARSON!!!! With 9 left, all against the worst teams in the majors, this should be like taking candy from a baby. But that was one tough freaking baby last night.

  7. cltil says:

    Nothing is worse than the Browns and their fans being just newsy bits in the national media’s day.

  8. zarathustra says:

    So the browns got unambiguously good value for Richardson but you are still upset?  Because perception?  You would prefer the front office eschew “good management tactics” and keep a running back that lacks beast mode and stops before contact.  How many wins does his absence cost this team this year.  Based on your very own assessment probably not much.  I will say zero.  It is a bit strange that you saved your vitriol for the front office that traded him for good value rather than the previous guys who not only drafted a running back number three overall, but traded draft picks to do so.  For a running back who demonstrated lack of beast mode stopped before contact in college.  And these are the good guys???  Is it possible your biases against this front office–well-documented before a single personnell move–have clouded your judgment?
    Concerning your offseason plan: by and large it would be radical and unprecedented for a successful franchise.  You cannot provide a single example of a first year front office/coaching staff that embarked on anything similar to your plan in year one.  As I have reminded you in these comments in the past, this is year one and no matter how angry you are about it it does not change this fact.  This past spring you were kind and generous enough to ask me to post a rebuttal to your critique of the browns draft.  In said post I believe I put your list of team turn arounds in better context.  Of the 55 teams to finish 5-11 or worse and make the playoffs the next year only 9 had first year coaches.  With brandon weeden at quarterback it really is hard to imagine the browns as the tenth.
    I also have to say that it is a bit frustrating that you accuse those that support the trade as suffering from stockholm syndrome.  After all, you kind of support the trade (honestly I can’t tell.)  I do wish you had expressed such vitriol at the fans who were lol-ing “in holmgren we trust” after ever front office blunder the past three years–they even had a slogan celebrating their delusion. 
    Also, the colts will NOT make the playoffs this year, but I guess it doesn’t matter because they are trying to win. No matter that they have abandoned “good management tactics” and jeopardized their future with this trade

    • jimkanicki says:

      I’m upset because we’re looking down the barrel of a 2-14 season solely due to the arrogance of Joe Banner. I’m upset because we’re stuck with this jackass for at least three years and when he’s replaced the new jackass will want ‘their guys’ and will preach patience and buy himself another three years. I’m upset because patronizing national media types are swooping in to tell us stupid fans that we’re too stupid to understand the big picture of these things when in fact we understand perfectly well that national media types need to maintain access to Banner-types more than they need to be candid to fans in any way.

      And I’m surely upset with some Browns fans’ complacency in these regards.

      You’re cool with the prospect of a 2-12 team this year in order to have a 50% shot at franchise QB. I’m frustrated you don’t see that as bit of loving your captor. I think it is the patient fan who lacks clarity here. So brainwashed and impotent after fourteen years with one playoff appearance (a loss) that you’re willing to buy anything you’re told. You should be as pissed as I am. I mean, Zara: what are you going to say if we’re 2-14? You really cool with that?

      It’s real easy: Banner doesn’t care if I root for the team or not. Banner thinks I/we will always be there. Banner thinks we give a shit about his office redesign. So no, I’m not going to support him. He’s taken a dump in my front lawn. The question is really, what has he done to earn your support?

      We shall see about the Colts and the playoffs.

      And concerning my feelings toward Holgrum/Shurmur I did create these graphics.
      (Gif too busy, just click: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/11485578/shurmur-drink.gif)

      caption: “You’re in my recliner.”
      But yes, one of the reasons for starting this blog is to have a catalogue so that I (and you) can see if I’m right in my spewing or not.

      • zarathustra says:

        I in no way expect 2-14 this year and I believe the front office has positioned the team well for the future. So we simply disagree. Time will tell.
        But not so fast on the “holmgren/shurmur” nonsense. You cannot go all in with questioning every banner/lombardi bowel movement and just whistle on past the train wreck that heckert the magificent left here. I challenge you to apply the same standard to lombardi as you do heckert. Quite frankly this your blind spot in all of this.

        • jimkanicki says:

          I’m sure if we google “Kanicki+Frowns+Weeden+draft” we can probably find me upset on the Brandon Weeden reach in the first round, John Hughes in 3rd, and losing at poker with Spielman/Vikes. But if you subscribe to the theory of trusting your scouting and getting your guy, then Heckert got his guys and I give him credit for that. Did he overpay for Phil Taylor? Yeah, probably. (Gave up Justin Houston. I’ve killed Heckert on that, I assure you.) But the value/fallback pick that year was Gabe Carimi and look at Carimi now. Banner, OTOH, is a slave to value and so.. nice non-draft this year, dick.

          Further on Heckert, the cap situation indicates that this year was likely his year to fill holes via free agency. We don’t know his plan. We do know Banner’s cap situation has everything to do with Heckert, nothing to do with Banner, and all evidence indicates Banner is going to forfeit the $14M in rollover. I seriously doubt Heckert saved 14M in order to let evaporate this year.

          I don’t like any team exec that forces me to dislike my own team. I think I’m very even-handed in this way, very consistent.

          • Zarathustra says:

            I feel confident I have caught most of your posts/frowns comments and I don’t recall this level of outrage against panic reaching for weeden. I think that blunder probably deserves as much criticism as banner/Lombardi getting good value for Richardson. And maybe losing at poker to spielman and wasting draft picks should elicit as much vitriol as gaining draft position through trading picks this past April. And maybe expending the #3 overall pick on a running back who demonstrated in college a lack of beast mode and was slow to contact should suffer the same scrutiny as this year’s number six pick. Maybe we should take another look at early picks like ward, little, and hardesty. I promise you that you have granted heckert far more free passes than I will ever grant Lombardi.

            • jimkanicki says:

              Then you also know that I called for us to trade for Alex Smith when Singletary benched him and we were starting Colt McCoy. But I don’t know what my predictions have to do with the fact of Banner playing to lose this season.

              • Zarathustra says:

                This has nothing to with predictions and everything to reaction the moves of the front office. You were probably right about trading for Alex smith–although, shurmur. When heckert failed to make that trade was your response the same as when banner/Lombardi failed to do your bidding this offseason? Discounting sins of omission,at this point there is not a single draft pick/personnel move which can be classified a failure. The same cannot be said for heckert–who you were quite content to be patient with after multiple blunders. I know you didn’t like the Richardson pick–thankfully neither did Lombardi at the time–I ask you to compare your reaction then to the first round pick this year–which was far more defensible by recent nfl standards than giving up picks to take a running back. The defensible position draws your ire, but the totally irresponsible move evokes mild disapproval.
                I believe you to be such a valuable voice to the browns discussion and so much appreciate what you do, but I would suggest that your emotions have clouded your analysis here. It is impossible to praise heckert with his record–and give him every benefit of the doubt by divining his future intentions–and damn Lombardi for his while ascribing every ill intention to his every move. As I stated above, as a Lombardi supporter (at this point) I plan on holding him to a far higher standard than you held heckert.

              • jimkanicki says:

                I don’t apologize for the emotional tone of this post. The tone is in direct proportion to the shocking dearth of fan perspective in anything I’ve read anywhere else.


                re: Heckert I think you’re way off base. First I was critical of many draft moves and most all of his FA moves. But he never tanked a season. Also as I said before, it’s reasonable to assume the $30M in cap that he saved for this year would’ve been used. You know for players and being competitive. Shit front offices are supposed to do. Heckert would not have dumped his defense and acquired four pass rushers. So I really don’t get the think about measuring my Heckert criticisms… I try to be even-handed on all of this and I definitely find Banner’s work to date far worse than Heckert’s and I’m saying so.

          • Zarathustra says:

            Also re: heckert. Colt McCoy. As gm he sat by and at the very least tacitly approved his two year audition for quarterback of the future. Free pass.
            Pat shurmur. Holmgren consults his hand-picked gm and football consigliere about shurmur. Was the response, “you know mike, I know he is fritz’s nephew and worked with Andy for several years but I was there too and I’m just not sure that he is ready. I cannot support his hiring.” This would have been the correct response and there is absolutely zero reason to believe this was his response. The most likely response however was probably more along the lines of “yes mike, after all I was in the interviews with you and spent years with him in Philly. He may be a bit green but I think he has what takes and we should give him a shot. After all we are punting on the season with colt at qb and the fans only chant ‘in h&h we trust’ like a bunch of fucking lemmings.” Again, free pass. But mike Lombardi signs a quality player like Desmond Bryant and grrrrrrr.
            I believe your biases and emotions are clouding your normally sharp analysis.

            • jimkanicki says:

              I think your ground-shifting into Heckert talk has nothing at all to do with the subject at hand which is that Joe Banner has blithely said fuck you fans we’re tanking the season and betting everything on a 50% chance that the QB we draft will be good. Heckert has nothing to do with that fact.

              Desmond Bryant plays a position that was the strength of last year’s team and has back problems. $40M though because he’s ‘Banner’s guy.’ Paul Kruger started six games IN HIS FOUR YEAR CAREER. $40M though because he’s ‘Banner’s guy.’ Ray Horton says blitzes and front 7 mean you don’t need to invest in the secondary. That’s ok because Horton is ‘Banner’s guy.’

              There’s been plenty to criticize in this regime’s last six months and, again, my strident tone is due in no small measure to the lack of anyone calling Banner on it. All I read about are deejays and murals. You find the reporter who asks Banner why he’s letting 14M in cap evaporate this year and I’ll give you a Daniel Webster cigar.

              • Zarathustra says:

                I bring up heckert because it is pertinent. Banner/Lombardi have had zero failures at this point; heckert had several–some of which were woefully irresponsible. Yet you are in ‘eff you’ mode for the former and still praise the body of work of the latter. That is a disconnect that is very relevant to your critique. Especially considering banner/lombardi just cleaned up one heckert’s messes in richardson. Tanking is a relative term. I would say colt McCoy as starting qb and Seneca Wallace as back-up leads to one of two conclusions–complete incompetence or tanking. This year’s team without Trent Richardson is still better than that team. And I will happily wager a Daniel Webster cigar on it.
                I understand you liked our front four last year–it was the strength of a shitty team–but if you think the front seven was anywhere near sufficient for contention I would invite you to examanie the perennial playoff teams and cite one example where a second round pick like shears is the leading pass rusher. I am basically agnostic on the 3-4/4-3 argument, but I believe you are being a bit obtuse in acting like the front office investment in the front seven is this some unprecedented affront to the football gods. What was such an affront was trading picks to draft a running back number 3 overall and panic reaching for weeden. Those moves should inspired an “eff you” mode onslaught. They were truly irresponsonsible moves, very much unlike trading an underperforming running back for a first round draft pick–by the way the colts by this Sunday it is likely the colts will be a narrow home win over the raiders away from 0-3.
                Further demonstrating the prudence of the front office move in relation to your plan is Jordan Cameron. Even if Dustin Keller had not been injured it would have been wasteful to invest money in a tight end when they already had a young promising one on the roster. Based on an admittedly small sample of two games the kanicki looks like a mistake. Ditto, the secondary. Look at some of the stats on team rankings for an example of how good the cardinal pass d was last year with only one elite player in the secondary. The wait and see approach with the secondary is prudent given the circumstances.

              • mgbode says:

                I agree that Banner has decided to tank the season and find it funny when people bring up Heckert for the offense. Because if Heckert left such a flaming pile of wreckage on offense, then why did Banner do absolutely NOTHING to fix it in the offseason?

                We got rid of starters at FB (ok, no loss), TE (no backup to Cameron now), while adding a WR3 (who is now WR2 because Little has been so bad). And….a couple backup QBs who pose no real danger to unseating Weeden (and I’m no big fan of his). That to me is the FO being complicit that we had a young offense they believe in. And, if they wanted to trade Richardson, then why was Sept. 1st waiver Bobby Rainey the only RB on our roster?

                one note:

                I don’t mind the defensive shift even now in hindsight. I like what they have done and the pieces they have picked up seem to be working.

                Also, that is said seeing the cap space and unused draft picks that could have certainly been used to FIX EVERYTHING ELSE ANYWAY.

                Banner lucked into a situation where he could change to whatever he wanted and had the ammunition to get it all done and chose not to do it.

  9. bupalos says:

    Yowza, wouldn’t have figured you to be THAT fired up about this. I keep trying to understand the angst and I just can’t. I mean, not over this. A marginal if overhyped player that was barely helping at all… and you get a 1st rounder. That’s the whole bottom line on this. It isn’t a “white flag” at all. It doesn’t guarantee we’re packaging it all up for a QB “sure thing”. We’re just making a no-braner move to add significant talent and ammunition to the team next year without subtracting much of anything this year.

    It’s fair to be upset about not going all-out right away, but this particular move really has very little to do with that. And it’s a little bait-n-switchy to bring in the Manuel thing. You were going to ride in with all your cap spent and Weeden. So you weren’t going to win, because look at the tape. Weeden is simply not a winning option– I don’t care what the line looks like. I think he might actually be worse with more time. It’s just hard to see how you can be beside yourself that your plan isn’t being carried out to win with Weeden. If anything, I think his continued parade of suck verifies the wisdom of what the Browns are doing.

    Vegas took this stunning, white-flag move and absolutely yawned. Because TRich has had practically no effect on any game outside of last year’s Cinci loss. You really can’t have it both ways, you can’t say TRich is a bust and that trading him equates to tanking a season. Despite the holes left on the D, it’s played pretty much lights out. It’s hard to see how it could have been much better. And the O wasn’t getting fixed with Weeden back there. That seems like the bottom line to me.

    • jimkanicki says:

      I dunno. The idea of another reboot, this one an entirely needless, bothers the shit out of me.
      The piling on of d-bag out-of-towners with patronizing sympathy and life-coaching us on long-term benefits of deferred gratification drives me,,, yes, it brings out my Tourette’s, thank you Acto.

  10. dan says:

    People defending this trade should be required to point to something they wrote in January arguing that the Browns should trade TRich and dump the 2013 season.

    One can blame Holmgren and Heckert all you want, but two games into a season Banner and Lombardi are giving up on an offense they did nothing for in the offseason but add a third down receiver and a seventh round guard. What does this move say about their judgment and the moves they made in free agency and the draft last spring?

    • acto says:

      There was some idiot around here who went berserker both times the Browns traded up to take an injury prone RB. NEVER DRAFT A RUNNING BACK IN THE FIRST THREE ROUNDS! That guy also pushed for drafting Russell Wilson, argued the importance of the Center position, (Have you seen the Steelers line recently?) and was screaming out against planning to suck for the next decade to get a QB that runs right into injuries. I called RG3’s injury before it happened. I could go on, but I am getting tired from tooting my own horn. (I expect at least one good comeback for that line.) My point is that if an imbecile like me and a mentally challenged, Tourette’s patient like JK can see this, then who has been doing the hiring for Popa Frack and that other guy?

      • jimkanicki says:

        I remember the Wilson talk. You and DWhalen.
        And I agree with you on center but you need to straighten out Bupalos. Imagine an el-cheapo free agent center in between our guards next year.
        This keeps up and even Joe Thomas is speeding ticket his way out of town.
        I didn’t have this tick until sometime around the Shurmur era but it does seem to be getting worse.

      • bupalos says:

        This is the man who gets to talk. That’s not even the end of it either, you had Doug Martin too I think.

        JK and I both endorsed the TRich foolishness as I remember it.

      • cltil says:

        You need to carry a bigger stick, Acto.

        • acto says:

          Very tactful, I appreciate the ad hominem attack at my anatomy.
          This started because a poster said that everyone was all in favor of the TRich debacle.

  11. danz says:

    “Trying to win in the next five years has produced 14 years of shit. One playoff road loss in fourteen fucking years. So just FUCK OFF national media. Fuck off with how smart Banner is.”

    Trying to wrap my head around this statement. Is Banner at fault for the 14 losing seasons that occurred before he came here? Is that why he isn’t smart? Because last I checked, during those 14 shitty Browns seasons, he was overseeing the most successful era of football for the Eagles. And you know what sparked that winning era? Drafting a franchise QB at the outset.

    Look you want to get emotional because you are tired of waiting for a winner, I can understand that. It sucks. You want to get upset because the Browns didn’t follow your fullproof plan for winning, I guess that is fine too. But the fact of the matter remains that this team is nothing without a QB. period. It is why you slipped EJ Manuel into your full proof plan, because even with all of the other moves you suggest, you still have Brandon Weeden as your QB and you cannot win with that, or Campbell, or Hoyer.

    You want to say that national writers like to cow tow to whatever Banner does and say it is a good move, that is fine too (I can totally understand LaConfora – hate that asshole). Yet, it may be that they can see the benefit of the move because they can look at it in the direct opposite manner as your post; devoid of emotion. And the national writers make very good points (especially Barnwell) as to why this is a prudent and right move. The Browns need a QB, they just put themselves in better position to draft a QB. If the chance of us getting a good QB is less than 50% (based on your arbitrary evaluation), I don’t care, considering the chance of us being good without a good QB is exactly 0 (based on 14 years of losing). The only counterpoint I have heard from anyone is an emotion based response that “I want to win NOW”.

    I also don’t see how what Dane Brugler says in the quoted section says that he is trotting out the myth of a sure thing. He basically stated the obvious; that we need a QB and we will probably draft one and those are the QB’s in the draft. Nowhere did he say it was a sure thing.

    • jimkanicki says:

      National media says we should wait patiently. That hasn’t worked. You really have to strain not to understand the point here but it’s this: I’m not cool punting this year; I don’t agree this was a punt year anyway; I’ve laid out a simple plan for being competitive that is not a stretch. The ‘stretch’ is the lack of hole plugging done by the front office. They didn’t know Lauvao and Skrine and Gipson were starters? Cmon, why you give them a pass on that?

      You say “is Banner at fault for the last 14 years?” I say what has Banner proven where he can junk the defense, sign 3 d-frontmen and draft a 4th one with absolutely zero urgency or cognizance of what preceded him.

      I slipped in EJ Manuel because the Bills trade was available to the Browns. Right down to the pre-draft interview of Manuel. They chose to get their fourth pass rusher. You think that’s cool. I think that’s shit.

      Here’s my twitter back and forth with Brugler.

      I mean we’ve covered this exhaustively. Six holes with #6 overall and $30M in cap is not too many holes and anyway Banner plugged only one. So Brugler is in the ‘wait patiently’ boat. He won’t be watching a 1-15 every damn week. He’ll just be the one telling us how smart the GM of the 1-15 team is.

      • Danz says:

        I got that you want to win now (thanks for the snark by the way). What I do not understand is how Banner is somehow responsible for the 14 years of shit that preceded him, and how those 14 years has any bearing on his reputation as being a good front office exec.

        The arguments are getting jumbled so I am just going to list them:

        1. Where has Banner proven that he can turn a team around?
        – Well he took over a perennial loser in the Eagles and over the span of a couple years turned them into a team that consistently went to the playoffs (You yourself gave him a B for his grade with the Eagles and stated that he should be cut some slack – I believe in January – can’t remember exactly). He was able make the team a winner by drafting a franchise QB. I am guessing that is the plan he is implementing here.

        2. How could Banner have zero urgency or cognizance of what preceded him?
        – I would think he has a good idea of what preceded him, 14 seasons of suck as you put it. More importantly, what preceded him was the Crennel era, which tried to buy low on a QB (Quinn, DQ), the Mangini era, which opted for a center rather than QB, and the Holmgren era, which tried to get a top tier QB, and once that didn’t happen, settled for an aged sub par product. He probably looked at what preceded him and determined that not one of those regimes made the most important position on the field their top priority. He probably saw this, saw what made his team successful in the past, and opted to pursue the franchise QB. I cannot fault him for this reasoning.

        3. They didn’t know Lauvao was a starter?
        – I don’t think Lauvao was intended to be a starter. They had Pinkston starting ahead of him, and he got hurt, and then Lauvao got hurt. Were they supposed to predict the injury of their starting and backup guard?

        4. Your plan.

        – Also, EJ Manuel has played 2 games in the NFL, lets not act as if he is suddenly the QB of the future for the Bills. I watched him alot in college, and he could be very pedestrian (I think that is why you didn’t include him in your plan until now. Boy isn’t hindsight great!). Also Baccari Rambo is part of the worst defense statistically this year. And Dustin Keller is hurt. So your plan may have worked, and it may not have worked. Just like Banner’s plan may work and it may not work. But I cannot fault him because he did not follow your plan down to the letter.

        5. Dane Brugler
        – My question still stands. No where in the quote did he say that drafting a QB is full proof.

        • jimkanicki says:

          lol.. shit i thought i cleaned it up. you shoulda seen the snark in the first edit. 😉

          I strongly disagree with Banner reputation being so stellar. Eagles fans do not miss him. His best and most pivotal pick the result of the Browns and Bengals blowing it, not his genius. Andy Reid mounted a coup against him. There is no basis for Joe Banner, genius and I have this in greater detail from a post in February. I gave him a courtesy B but let’s be real, the Eagles never got over the hump. Their Super Bowl appearance team was not in the Pats class and then the next year Banner tore it apart.

          Furthermore, I have heard from a person I trust that Banner’s personality was a major factor in Chip Kelly passing on the Browns job. You can believe it or not. I believe it. Just look how he manages Lombardi and Chud… would you want to work for that guy? I would not.

          As for the other points:
          2. The idea that tanking a season gets you Peyton Manning or Andrew Luck is a fairy tale. As a Raiders fan I know just told me, “For the Browns to tank this season they should be rewarded with JaMarcus Russell.” That is often how karma resolves unethical behaviors (such as punting a season and fucking your fans).
          3. If they were banking on arterial blood clot Pinkston to start, that’s soft planning.
          4. I actually wrote a draft piece entitled “EJ Manuel: Do not want.” But I didn’t have him into my offices for an interview and workout, Banner did.
          5. Brugler’s tweet says it’s all about the QB and, yes, his point suggests that a high draft pick used on a QB is a panacea and therefore we Browns fans should be cool with 1-15 or 2-14. I think that’s bullshit.

          • Danz says:

            I am guessing that after the interview and workout of EJ Manuel they came to the same conclusion that you did – Do not want. I have not seen anything that points to that decision being wrong (YET). Just because they worked him out doesn’t mean they liked him and must pick him, they were probably just doing their due diligence, as one would expect for a team in need of a QB.

            I didn’t say his reputation was completely stellar (I don’t think any executive’s is), but you cannot deny that the Eagles were a consistently winning team who made the Super Bowl. When “getting over the hump” is winning a Super Bowl, I think the you have done a pretty good job. You also cannot deny that they had a stable situation at QB, which was a big factor in their success. You cannot fault the guy for attempting to replicate that here.

            “Mitigating factors: nine playoff years; seven NFC East wins; Super Bowl appearance. Bumping overall grade 1.5 for these.

            Reading between the lines: Eagles lost their way starting with the Vick signing and carrying through with the 2011 FA signings. Why the change in strategy? Did Lurie/Reid take the reins at this time? Is this why Banner shot his way out of town? I’m inclined to think yes. I’ll give Banner another 0.3 points on this assumption.

            Gents,,, that is a 7.8 and I have Banner at a solid B grading. Considering where we’ve been, that buys this guy some slack and I’m gonna give him some.”

            That is what you said. That does not sound like courtesy. That looks like a review of Banner’s track record, devoid of emotion, that shows that his teams were successful. All I am saying is that applying an emotionless review of this move you get to a trade of an average RB that showed very little of the potential we were told about, had trouble seeing and bursting through holes and breaking big plays, and stopped his momentum at the point of contact. We got a first round pick for an average player at a position that is easily replaceable (unless you are Adrian Peterson). Said pick will either be used to acquire a QB, the most important position on the field by far, or to select a player that can have an impact on a more important position.

            • jimkanicki says:

              I was being nice.
              I do think that being a jerk bites you in the ass. Latest example is having Lombardi call TRich’s agent, no one spoke to Richardson about the trade. Class-less.
              A-players get to pick who they work for. I maintain Joe Banner would be a tough guy to work for.

              • Danz says:

                Being a tough guy to work for does not make his decisions any worse in this case. Nor does it point to his ability to turn this team around.

                Also, I don’t know how these things work as I am not an agent nor a front office person, but there may be procedure to how these thing go. There may also be legal ethical parameters that the front office is trying to follow. Usually you deal with another party’s counsel rather than them directly.

      • mgbode says:

        as long as everyone on this thread is self-horn-tooting, who was the guy who was touting EJ Manuel pre-draft? I cannot remember. I think he was a pretty dang smart guy though who we should all listen to in the future 😉

        • jimkanicki says:

          Cripes was that you? You and Mary Kay? I totally missed that one.

          • mgbode says:

            I agreed with MKC on a QB?

            wait a second, she’s our Gruden in that she loves ALL QBs. whew. I was about to have to delete that comment above 🙂

            and Manuel was the only QB in the last draft that I thought was an upgrade from Weeden (as poor as Weeden’s rookie year was). Geno could prove that wrong, but I think he’s essentially the same guy as Weeden (though younger and more mobility, but not anyone you should ever tie your team to).

            note though I only advocated Manuel on a trade-down. in retrospect, we may not have gotten him had we dropped because the Bills may have just taken him at their original spot.

  12. Tron says:

    National sport pundits are like national world pundits. They the suck the cock of our leaders while they flush our planet down the fucking shithole.

  13. tmoore94 says:

    You hit the nail right on the head here. The assumption that the Browns are guaranteed to wind up with a great player because of this trade is simply ridiculous. There is no evidence, at the moment, that the talent evaluators currently residing in Berea can deliver in that assumption.

    We don’t know, today, whether or not this trade is going to work out in the Browns favor and its a stretch to say they “won” the trade like some people are claiming. We won’t know until we see what the Browns do with this extra draft pick; what happens next spring if/when they trade them away for future draft picks because Lombardi thinks Brian Hoyer is the second-coming of Tom Brady?

    I also can’t remember a fan base turning on an athlete as quickly as a segment of Browns fans have turned on Richardson in their rush to justify this trade and validate their belief that Banner & Lombardi are smarter than everyone else. Thinking back to opening day of last season when Richardson blew up that Philly defender he seemed like a perfect athlete for Cleveland, now … he’s garbage to many.

    I’m not sure how you can evaluate his rookie season when he played through injuries and in Pat Shurmur’s offense. Richardson may not be able to do everything on the field, but he knows how to find the end zone, which is something the Browns have sorely need for far to long.

    • danz says:

      Nobody ever said that we are guaranteed to wind up with a great player or QB. What people are guaranteeing is that we are not going to win without a QB, and there is plenty of evidence of that.

      I also don’t think people suddenly are turning on Richardson. Many people (including this website’s author) have said previously that he does not run like a franchise running back should run like.

      The truth is that RB is a fungible position, i.e. you can plug in almost anyone and get almost the same production. Unless you are Adrian Peterson (which Trent is not) then you are easily replaceable.

      • jimkanicki says:

        This is fair. My thing is more with the entire ‘punt’ thing that’s gone this off-season and the accompanying pissing-on-our-backs-telling-us-its-raining part where we have to be told how freaking smart Banner is.

      • tmoore94 says:

        Actually, plenty of people who are trying to spin this trade as a win for the Browns are saying that exact thing. I agree that you need a QB to win and it is very likely that player is not on the current roster, but we don’t know – yet – if this trade will address that situation. Time will tell.

        I’m familiar with Kanicki’s views on Richardson, but I don’t remember him ever saying the Browns should ship him out of town. If/when the franchise QB arrives he will need someone to hand the ball to, having Richardson on the roster may not have been a bad idea as the Browns have just created another hole they will need to fill.

        I’m just not ready to go back to the days of watching Lee Suggs, William Green and Travis Prentice lead the team in rushing, which is going to happen this year. Opposing defenses at least had to respect Richardson as a runner, now there is no one on the roster that fits that description.

        But hey, two steps and one step forward and all that.

        • jimkanicki says:

          That’s true too. It was a quiet discontent with TRich… he still had a lot of leash with me. Wanted him used on the edge more. Wanted to see him without broken ribs. You never saw him in space so hard to kill him completely.

          SInce he was pimped as the 1500 yd centerpiece of this offense, his trading reflects the tanking of the season, plain and simple.

  14. spencer0969 says:

    just sad

  15. the real question is: How good is Trent Richardson after all the pounding in Bama and the injuries he’s sustained in a very brief period of time? Obviously he seemingly has a much better supporting cast in IND, so maybe the wholes open up for him and he puts up the 100+ yards a game H+H were envisioning from him. But who’s to say Ogbannaya or McGahee doesn’t give you as much production as Trent was going to give us. I guess we’ll see soon enough (Indy/SF game on right after Clownies on CBS).

    But the bottom line is we’re paying for H+H’s miscalculation on taking Trent with the 3rd pick. Not that there are a ton of other studs out there, but the Browns sure could use Mo Claiborne back there. But this new regime does not value RB’s that high, so with this additional first rounder we can go QB, WR, and RB with first 3 picks. No guarantees obviously, but it sure has worked out well for the Bengals. IN LOMBARDI WE TRUST

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