The Mirage: Three Strikes

Brian Tarcy is more discombobulated than normal today.

Colt McCoy, Eric Mangini and Randy Lerner have shaken my view of reality.

Peyton Hillis has confirmed it.

In truth, I am discombobulated. I cannot tell a mirage from reality.

For more than a decade I have written this column and too many other dumb columns in lots of places proselytizing that the Cleveland Browns are about to build a dynasty. I have believed it with every fiber of my being. And I have been dead wrong.

Until now.

It's weird. I have continued to believe that the dynasty building was about to commence. But when Colt McCoy was drafted, I thought he was Charlie Frye with a Texas accent. Early last year, I thought Eric Mangini was a surly Belichick personality without the genius, and when Randy Lerner hired Mangini I thought he was doing the kind of thing Randy Lerner would do. The dynasty building would have to wait until he sold the team.

But now, as I recover from dizziness, I am trying to get my head around the idea that I am so wrong that I might finally be right. In quick retrospect, I already get the karmic concept that it really could only happen this way. Life is nothing if not balanced, as well as unfair.

Still, I wasn't completely wrong. In the midst of my ruminations on the greatness of Derek Anderson and Kelly Holcomb, I have also defined Cleveland Browns football as a power running game. I was wrong. I was right. And now, I am right because I am wrong. After I declared that Colt McCoy, Eric Mangini and Randy Lerner are hopeless, the three of them are providing actual hope.

The identity of an NFL team starts with the quarterback, the head coach and the owner.

I was wrong on all three.

I think.

Unless I am seeing things.

One thing I was right on was the style of play necessary to build a dynasty in Cleveland. It turns out that Peyton Hillis plays like the definition of a Cleveland Brown. Even I can see that.

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