OBR Daily Blog 10/26

Browns are only 2-5, but, hey, it could be worse (e.g. Dallas Cowboys)

11:09 PM

Podcast: A Wild Wonderful Win: Barry, Lane, and Fred go over the Browns win against the Super Bowl Champs http://bit.ly/a5SS6T

10:00 PM

(Stands and applauds) RT @Jay_Glazer do you follow the #NBA >not at all! Especially not after The Decision

Browns Player Quotes, Oct. 26
Don Delco on October 26th, 2010 AT 4:12 PM

WR Joshua Cribbs

(On the lateral to Eric Wright against New Orleans)- "We practiced that a lot in practice. E-Wright has been begging for it all year and we finally got it to him. It was executed perfectly. Great call by (Brad) Seely, our special teams coach, and we executed it."

(On if running trick plays on special teams can open things up)- "Definitely. I feel like teams at this point now have to worry about the throw back again. They have to cover that side of the field. We can run a lot of fakes off of that and possibly open the return game up."

(On what David Bowens means to the team)- "He's a great leader. He's been there, he's been around this league for quite some time and a lot of guys look up to him for leadership. He definitely led us by example in last Sunday's game with the two interceptions for touchdowns and that says a lot about his character."

WR Mohamed Massaquoi

(On what he can improve on going forward into the rest of the season)- "Looking at this point in the season, I definitely wish that my production would be a little bit better. But I'm going to go back and look at some of the things that I can do to better myself to try to have a bigger second half and try to learn from the little things that didn't go so right in the first half. Just try to get on the same page with everybody and make sure I can do some things differently to be as productive as possible in the second part of the season."

(On if playing with so many different quarterbacks puts a strain on the offense)- "The good thing about it is you get a chance to practice with everybody before you go out there and play with them, so that's a positive. I think if you look at where we are at as a team, we are moving in the right direction."

QB Colt McCoy

(On if it would be tough to not start after getting a taste of winning)- "You know what, I'm going to do what I've been doing since day one. That's prepare every day, prepare at night, prepare when I'm watching film with my coaches and just continue to get better and act like I'm the starter. That's what has gotten me here. What a great feeling to get a win for this team, for this locker room. Just being in here, you can kind of tell that the spirits were lifted a little bit, especially going into a bye week. We are not going to slow down any. We are going out to practice, we are going to work on things we can improve on especially when we watch film offensively. There are just little things that we certainly could have capitalized on. Small detailed things, whether it's missing a throw here or missing a sight, missing an adjustment, there are things offensively that we can really fix. I thought the offensive line, I said it the other night, played tremendous. The offensive line played outstanding, especially for being bumped and bruised. Having Floyd (Womack) move over and play right tackle, hats off to those guys. If we continue to play like that, aggressive up front and our defense plays well, we have got a chance to be in a lot of ballgames."

(On the biggest thing he has learned in his first two starts)- "I've certainly learned a lot. The Pittsburgh game, we kind of got down early so we had to throw it a lot. We were able to move the ball throwing the football and we passed for close to 300 yards. This game, we got up, we got a lead early, the defense was playing awesome and I really had to just not turn the ball over. That was kind of the main emphasis, especially at halftime, ‘Hey coming out, we are going to throw some play action on first down, but we are going to take care of the ball.' I really didn't have to do everything. The offensive line was blocking well, we were running the football and they were two totally different games. One game where you're having to throw and throw and throw, those are fun, but when you lose it is not worth it. When you come out with a win, everybody is happy and that's what it's all about."

(On the difference between learning on the sidelines and actually playing in the game)- "There's nothing like learning in the game. It's so much faster, plays happen, you're in and out, you're checking, you've got audibles and you can't take anything back. Those plays happen. I wish we could have a few back and I feel like we would've stayed on the field a lot longer, but that's when you learn. The hardest thing in football for me is to come back and watch the film and critique yourself and coach yourself because that's where you truly learn and you truly get better, but it's really hard to do. The last two weeks, that's what I've been doing. What can I do to help this team? It's a learning process and those first two games were against very good opponents and I just have got to go out to practice and continue to work, continue to get better, continue to work on timing with the receivers and the sky is the limit. I feel really good."

(On why watching film of himself is the hardest thing for him)- "Just seeing things that could have been, could have happened. I missed a sight adjustment in the middle of the field in the fourth quarter where we just had a miscommunication. I think it comes from not playing together, maybe not getting that look in practice, but in a game you have got to make it happen. It was on a third down and we had to come off the field. Playing together, getting some reps, getting a feel for each other, we would have hit it right off the bat and converted. I think this bye week, those are some things that we'll really focus on, we'll really look at and say, ‘Hey let's walk through it. This is what's going to happen, how can we fix this? How can we stay on the field?' Those things will work themselves out and we will just continue to get better."

(On if the offense can incorporate the wide receivers more)- "We need to. We'll certainly use this week and when we have man to man situations, quarterback-wise, I've got to get them the ball and we've got to win the routes. We have got to do a better job of spreading it out and I think just because of that, it will help our running game. It will help Peyton (Hillis) get downhill and it will help our linemen to get their hats ion the right place. There are just a lot of positive things so far through the first few games of this season that we can look at and be like, ‘We are close.' We are close on converting on some things and we understand we have got great opponents coming in. The Patriots are our main focus right now. This week we'll be strictly intent on what we have to do to beat them, what we have to do to be right and eliminate our mistakes. This is a huge week for us even though it's a bye week. We are going to go out to practice and work hard and work on our timing and we are excited. Like I said earlier, you can kind of tell that we've got a little pep in our step."

(On if he feels like this is his team when he is out on the field)- "I think as a rookie sometimes, you've got to be able to step in the huddle, call a play, make sure we get onsides, we get lined up, we get our audibles checked, we throw the ball where we are supposed to throw it. I think the first step is getting guys to believe in you and listen to you and respect you. That's hard. For me, I want to go out there and play the best I can, have great practices and let guys know that I can go out there and do it. I think that has happened, but I have just got to continue to work, continue to improve and continue to get better."

(On if he wants to finish the season as the starter)- "You know what, that's not up to me. I prepare every day like I'm the starter, I have since day one. I want to be the best that I can be for each and every guy in this locker room because our number one goal, no matter who is playing, is to win. That's what we are here for, that's what we want to do for Cleveland, for this organization, for everybody. We want to win. If that's me out there playing, then I'm going to give it 100 percent."

(On if he thinks if he wins a few more games, they won't take him out of the starting role)- "I don't think about that. I think about wins and losses and can I go out and win this game for our team? Can I go out and be the best I can be and spread the ball around and get us in the right place? If I see something, check out of it, stay on the field on third downs. There are a lot of things that go through my mind. The first week was tough, it was a hard game and we lost. The second week, we go in there and we manage the game and we win. We are kind of on a roll and I feel comfortable."

(On if playing a home game is appealing to him)- "Yes, I'm excited about playing at home. I'm excited."

(On having his jersey retired at the University of Texas this weekend)- "I'm just very humbled, very honored, especially that they did it so quick. That means a lot, but my main focus right now is in Cleveland and what I have to do to be the best quarterback I can be here. Going home this weekend, I am excited, I am happy. That's a huge honor for me, for my family, for my coaches who coached me those four years, for my teammates that I played with for four years. I certainly couldn't have done it without all of them and all of their support. That's a big honor and I'm thankful for that."

3:56 PM

Getting ready to hit the air on ESPN 1540AM and http://www.espncleveland.com for the Zeppe’s Pizzeria OBR Radio Program!

3:55 PM

Our OBR Radio Question this week: “Did the Saints game change your mind about Eric Mangini and his staff?” What’s your take?

Mangini Press Conference Transcript, Oct. 26
Don Delco on October 26th, 2010 AT 2:20 PM

?Below is the transcript from coach Eric Mangini’s Tuesday press conference, as provided by the Browns’ PR staff:

(Opening statement)- "Good morning everybody. What we're going to do today and this is the path that we've follow now over the course of last year and while I was in New York and I found it to be very effective. What we're doing today is we're going to work on our first and second down package and the same things that we would do on a normal Wednesday, the same things that we would have practiced against that opponent on a Wednesday. What the coaches have done is they have gone back through the first seven games and analyzed what went well, what went poorly, what we can change or want to change, maybe some things to throw out, maybe some things to add on. Then we show the guys a tape explain it to them, show them the adjustments, go walk through it, practice it, come back watch the tape and put that day in the bank. Tonight, we'll do the same thing as if were preparing for a normal Thursday so primarily a third down emphasis, same process. After that the players will have the next group of days off. We'll come back on Monday and Monday would be like a Friday for us in terms of preparation so it will be primarily goal line, short yardage, red zone specific and really take this time to break down us, to work on us. I have found that when we've done that effectively we've seen jumps in all three phases. I really enjoy having this opportunity and it's very important for us to take advantage of it as a staff and as a group of players in order to build in the second half of the season."

(On waiving James Davis)- "We had Thomas Clayton in here and liked Thomas while he was here. He got signed off of our practice squad by New England and at that point we were talking about bringing him up to the active roster, we just weren't able to do that. Then when he became available the other day on the waiver wire, we put in a claim and were awarded him so it was a one for one switch for James. As with any move like this, I wish James well and hope he's able to take advantage of his next opportunity."

(On why James Davis wasn't breaking through)- "I think he was making strides both as a running back and on special teams. It's just we liked a lot of things that Thomas did. It really wasn't just a vacuum decision of James, it was James in relationship to Thomas and we wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to bring Thomas back and give him some opportunities. I think Thomas has good size, he learned the offense well, thought he had good vision. George Warhop had worked with him some in San Francisco and had liked the things he had done there. Talked about it with Tom (Heckert) and decided to make that move."

(On Clayton's running style)- "I think he ranges anywhere from about 215 to 220. He's been as big as 225. He's another really good size back, physical back, strong runner so I liked all those things about him, and now I think he fits in with the things that we're trying to do. That's in no way a knock on James it's just more of a compliment to Thomas and what we hope he can do here for us. It's going to be important for him while he's here to carve out that role on special teams, continue to build a role on offense and we'll see where that goes."

(On if it is tough for some players to deal with roster moves like when Mike Bell was brought to Cleveland)- "I think each guy is a little bit different and each reaction is a little bit different. You bring in so many players whether it's in the offseason with free agency, the draft or whatever the case may be and you're constantly being challenged in terms of your position or your play time. That's what we deal with and it's the reality. I think that the thing that I try to do, and we try to do, is give everybody the opportunity to constantly improve their situation on the team and that's important to me. One of the things we will do here during the bye, as well, is if anybody has any questions about where they stand or what they can do to have a bigger role or improve their level of play time they can set up a meeting with me. I can spend some time with them individually and talk about that stuff. We have point of attack tapes on all the players so that's all the plays they have been involved in in the game but guys that haven't been in the games and it's just practice, we have those plays cut up as well, so it's isolated. They can go back and watch that tape and that can be something that myself and the player can sit down and watch and I can say, ‘Okay here's what I see as the things you need to work on, if you improve these things your play time will improve.' That's been a very good tool from my perspective and I think from a lot of the players' perspective because I think you lose track of some of the stuff you need to work on. You may have a different sort of perspective on how far you might have to go in an area but then when you see it, it kind of brings it all back into focus. These POAs we can go as far back as OTAs, to training camp and run them down the line. I remember I sat down with one player during the bye and he was a rookie at the time and I showed him the tapes from the season to date and training camp and preseason, and then I showed him his college POA and I said, ‘Here's the guy I drafted and now here's the guy that's now a member of this team. You tell me why there's a difference.' It wasn't to do anything besides to clear up why I felt the why that I felt and I think it was really productive for him. He's still with the team now, this was back in New York and he's doing a good job. I've seen a few of their games or tapes of their games and the issues that we talked about he's gotten better at. I don't know if it was a direct result of that conversation but I'm happy to see it because that's the guy we saw on college tape and that's the same guy that should have been there right away in New York."

(On if signing Demetrius Williams was a reflection of Mohamed Massaquoi's injury)- "No, Mo will be back today. We had worked out Demetrius last week the same time that we worked out Yamon (Figurs). Demetrius had a nice workout. Yamon had value to us in terms of the return game that Demetrius didn't really have but he was a guy that Tom (Heckert) and I talked about as, ‘Okay, if we get a window we'd like to get him on and see what he can do.' With the bye week now and getting Mo back and Josh (Cribbs) going through the game and not having any setbacks, we thought this was a good time to do it, and a little bit of extra time from a teaching perspective, from a practice perspective to see what he can do."

(On what it has done to the offense by not have continuity with the running backs)- "I feel like Peyton (Hillis) has been pretty consistent throughout the course of the season. Mike (Bell) is new and Thomas does have some exposure to our system from being here so that will be a good thing. Last year, we had the same situation and I thought when (Chris) Jennings had his chances he did a pretty good job with the opportunities that he had and Jerome (Harrison) got some more opportunities. I don't think it's set us back that much. I think in some ways you may have to take a step back in terms of their experience in the system in order to try to improve in some other areas that you hope you can take a step forward in."

(On if he is disappointed that he hasn't gotten anything from the three extra draft picks that they got from the draft day trade with New York in 2009)- "With draft picks you're always trying to hit on them and you're always trying to hit big on them. What we also got was Kenyon Coleman who has started 20 plus games or whatever it is. Abe Elam who has started 20 plus games. Alex Mack who started 20 plus games so there has been 60 games out of that group. You'd love to hit on every single pick that you have and you don't. Sometimes you hit big, sometimes you don't and you try to make it as precise of a science as you can and you wish you didn't have any guys that didn't work out. You get them that way then you get guys like Marcus Benard that were undrafted and come in and do some really good things, or the Josh Cribbs' of the world. It's not exact science by any stretch."

(On if Jake Delhomme or Seneca Wallace will be back this week)- "No, we won't practice either one of those guys this week. I think the earliest we'd be shooting for is probably Wednesday of next week."

(On if anyone else is going to have today and tomorrow off from practice because of injury)- "John St. Clair will. I think he was the only other one. Baby (Shaun Rogers) may not be today. I think I got it but I might be one off."

(On how Rogers played Sunday and if he played more on Sunday than he has in other games)- "One of the reasons for in his jump of reps was we were able to use him over there in Robaire's (Smith) spot some more. I thought he did a nice job. He's getting the reads down a little bit better and there were a couple of plays where he played the reads really well and he made a nice play in the running game. Where I thought Shaun did an excellent job on Sunday is whether it was a three man rush of pressure or four man rush, he hit the quarterback three or four different times which was great to see. My hope and expectation is that he'll continue to develop as an end because that adds depth, that adds versatility and when he's out there with (Ahtyba) Rubin and Kenyon (Coleman) that's a significant front three. There's a lot of beef that you have to get through to get to the next level which is great.”

(On Rogers held up health wise)- "Yes, he did. He had a nice pressure on David Bowens' second interception that I think really helped a lot. He seemed to come through well."

(On if there is anything to report on Montario Hardesty and if he is still around)- "All the young guys are here. What we do with that Tony (Grossi) and this has been pretty consistent, is they'll do their rehab and they go to all the meetings. Montario's in the meetings and right on down the line the different guys that have gotten hurt. I think that's really valuable because they go through the game planning process. They have to study. They're held to the same expectations as all the other players mentally. What I have found is when you send those guys home as rookies, it's almost like they never had a rookie year, at least now they're part of the process and they see how it works and they go through the mechanics of it, and when you get to that next year typically there's a jump. Saw it with Chansi Stuckey when he got hurt his first year. Danny Woodhead who is now in New England, he had gotten hurt, he went through that same thing and there's real value in that."

(On when they expect to get Hardesty back)- "I honestly don't know. I'm guessing some time during the offseason program. I haven't really gotten a specific date. Typically with those guys that would be something we do in the offseason in terms of the exact target date for their return.”

(On Brett Favre and his consecutive starts streak) - "It's amazing. It's amazing for anybody to have that many starts at any position but at the quarterback position with over the years the way that the pass rushers have gotten better, faster, and schemes have gotten more complicated, and the size of players have increased. The hits that he's taken over the years have been tremendous and his ability to play through pain is pretty special. I hope he's able to continue on because it is remarkable."

(On if he thought about not playing Favre in New York)- "No, he wasn't getting treatment and he practiced every day. He was there every day and the injury wasn't getting treated so I didn't really expect him to not play any of those games."

(On how statistically they have gotten better since last year but what the underlying factor is for not winning more)- "Turnovers, penalties. I think those two things are big reasons why we haven't won games. To me it starts with turnovers. One of the things we've improved the most on in the second half of last year was the amount of turnovers. Those dramatically declined and things changed and games changed with that. To date we've had a very challenging schedule and it doesn't get any easier in the weeks to come here, but that's just the way it is. I'd say if you don't turnover the ball your chances for success increase dramatically game in and game out."

(On if they are more susceptible to turnovers because the offense is more reliant on long drives than quick strikes)- "No, I don't think so I think it really comes down to focusing on the football first. Whether it was the Rams, I forget how many years ago that was early 2000s, there were quite a few turnovers but there were quite a few big plays as well so that correlation wasn't consistent. I've seen a lot of teams that grind out the ball and don't have very many turnovers. You look at Atlanta, I assume they still lead the league in time of possession. They run the ball however many times a game, 30 something times a game, they typically, grind it out and they don't have very many turnovers. I think it's more how well you protect the football as opposed to what your core philosophy is."

(On if the league cracking down on hits to the head will result in an increase of lower body injuries)- "I don't know how that's going to affect things. You have got to hit them somewhere. I don't know."

(On if there was a noticeable difference in the way defensive players were hitting offensive players this past game)- "I didn't see a dramatic difference. I didn't really notice it changing that much. I think the thing that we need to continue to do better is whoever we hit, wherever we hit them, is bring our arms. That would make me a lot happier."

(On which players received game balls from Sunday)- "We gave two defensively. One was to (Scott) Fujita for his 11 tackles, two tackles for a loss, he had a sack and an interception, a quarterback pressure, two assists, so he had a pretty good day. D-Bo (David Bowens) got one for his historic performance. He should have kept both of them. Joe Thomas was our offensive player of the game. I thought he did a really nice job, in terms of his one on one blocking, his run blocking and the way it was coordinated in terms of the pickups of the different pressures. Carlton Mitchell was our practice player of the week. I think he's doing a really nice job there and I was glad he got his first opportunity to be active. Reggie Hodges was our special teams player of the week not just for the keep, but he had the two punts inside the 11. I think he had a 42.3-yard net."

(On what kind of coach Brad Seely is)- "I've known him forever. My office was in between his and Rob's (Ryan), so it was kind of the two extremes there in terms of neighbors. If you took Rob and you took Brian (Daboll) and you fused them together and added a few years, you would have Brad. He's got that meticulousness and attention to detail that Brian has, and Brian tends to be a little more on the serious side. Then he's also a really funny guy, some of the same traits that we see from Rob. I'm not saying Rob doesn't have the other positive characteristics of Brian, but you get Brad and he's the fusion between the two. He's really knowledgeable about not just special teams, but personnel, about game management. He'd be a great head coach. Typically special teams coaches don't get that opportunity, I know it's been broken a little bit. He sees the big picture. Special teams coaches have to see the big picture, they have to take guys from all over the place, coordinate them into one package and split very small amounts of time and make sure that it's right. He's one of the best I've ever been around."

(On what makes David Bowens so valuable to the team)- "He's versatile. One year in New York, he was the special teams captain, which says a lot about him. Last year when we had the injuries to our captains, he was voted captain. He played MIKE linebacker last year and called the defenses. He's played outside linebacker, he's played defensive end in sub, he's played defensive tackle in sub. He has a way to relate to anybody regardless of their background. It could be the most straight-laced guy, it could be the least straight-laced guy, he's got a way to connect with them. He has a presence and he's confident in who he is and what he says and he says it in a way that people want to follow him and don't resent the fact that he's honest. I really think once he gets out of football, if coaching was his next decision, I think he'd be outstanding in that role. I could go on and on, I'm a big fan."

(On if he feels good about the stance the league has taken to try and prevent concussions and if there is a fine line in being too protective)- "I do feel strongly that we should protect the players, especially the helmet to helmet contact and the concussions. But if you do drop the area where you are going to hit, then that's probably going to spike some other area in terms of injuries. I think that the goal at the end of the day is to have an aggressive, tough, physical style of football across the league that's also smart and safe and effective and protects our players as much as we possibly can."

(On if it is possible for the game to be smart and safe as well as aggressive and tough)- "Yes, I do think it can be. We ask the players to do a lot of things during the course of the week and learn a lot of things and react in very short amounts of time and they do it well. Their ability to adjust is pretty amazing. When I go back for my camp in Hartford and work with high school kids and eighth graders, you're coaching them and you can't figure out why they aren't doing this thing that you're telling them in a split second perfectly. You get so used to that because the pro players can do that. I'm sure that collectively, we will be able to adapt and move forward and move forward in a way that's in the spirit of the game and still very safe."

1:52 PM

This week’s OBR Radio Question: “Did the Saints game change your mind about Eric Mangini and the Browns coaching staff?” Give us your takes!

12:26 PM

TSX: Browns’ Week 7 Grades: After six weeks of poor marks, this week’s report card belongs on the fridge. http://bit.ly/9h1Psi

12:26 PM

Browns Look for Bye Boost: Eric Mangini’s teams are historically better after bye week with a 3-1 record and are a… http://bit.ly/boZWUW

11:58 AM

@3_Dots Haven’t heard if Saints-Browns will be replayed on NFLN. I’ll let you know if I find out.

11:58 AM

@3_Dots Haven’t heard if Saints-Browns will be replayed on NFLN. I’ll let you know if I find out.

Browns make Davis cut official
Don Delco on October 26th, 2010 AT 10:46 AM

The Browns made the James Davis cut official Tuesday with the below release:

The Cleveland Browns were awarded running back Thomas Clayton off waivers from New England and signed free agent wide receiver Demetrius Williams, the team announced today. In addition, the club waived running back James Davis and wide receiver Yamon Figurs.

Originally drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in the sixth round (186th overall) of the 2007 NFL Draft, Clayton spent the entire 2007 season and the first 14 weeks of the 2008 season on the 49ers' practice squad before being elevated to the 53-man roster for the final two games. He spent the entire 2009 season on injured reserve. Clayton spent training camp in 2010 with the Patriots before being signed to the Browns practice squad on September 15. He spent two weeks with Cleveland before being signed to New England's active roster on September 30. Clayton was inactive for two games with the Patriots before being waived on October 23.

A three-year letterman at Kansas State University (2004-06), Clayton saw action in 28 games, recording 1,075 yards on 232 carries with seven touchdowns. Born on April 26, 1984, the 5-11, 220-pound Clayton is a native of Alexandria, Va., where he attended Mt. Vernon High School.

Originally drafted by the Baltimore Ravens in the fourth round (111th overall) of the 2006 NFL Draft, Williams has appeared in 44 games, all with Baltimore, with four starts. He has recorded 63 career receptions for 1,008 yards with four touchdowns. His most productive season came in 2006 when he caught 22 passes for 396 yards and two touchdowns, including a 77-yard score against the Browns on December 17. He was waived by the Ravens on September 4, 2010.

Williams appeared in 45 games with 28 starts at the University of Oregon (2002-05), where he totaled 162 career receptions for 2,660 yards and 20 touchdowns. His set a school record with 11 games with 100 or more receiving yards, while his career reception total ranked third in school history and his yardage total was fourth. Born on March 28, 1983, the 6-2, 202-pound Williams is a native of Concord, Calif., where he attended De La Salle High School.

Clayton will wear number 34 and Williams will be 88.

10:34 AM

Sign wr demetrius williams andrb thomas clyton. Cut rb james davis and wr yamon figurs.

Latest Links from the OBR Newswire
OBR Newswire on October 26th, 2010 AT 9:00 AM

These are links from the OBR Newswire for October 26th from 08:07 to 08:15:

7:51 AM

Browns-Saints: Joe’s Game Review: Joe Brownlee examines the good, the bad from the Browns 30-17 win in ‘Nawlins http://bit.ly/aSF0d0

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