Check: This and That

Mike Holmgren and Tom Heckert come out from under the cloak of secrecy and disclose the mindset of the organization.

If you hadn't read our Rumors/Tidbits Forum at theOBR prior to Monday, the news and information team president Mike Holmgren and general manager Tom Heckert now discuss with the print and radio media is new news.

For those that have been following along on the Rumors/Tidbits Forum, you know the deal.

Mike and Tom come out from under the cloak of secrecy and disclose the mindset of the organization.


Rookie QB Brandon Weeden will have to compete. Those words spoken by the team president must not have gotten to head coach Pat Shurmur, who has noted Weeden would be handled differently in preparation for the season.

You've already tried to trade up in the draft for another prospect. You select a 28-year old QB that has every attribute the organization has sought and you say he is going to compete.

Maybe he will, day-in and day-out through the summer to be readied for the Browns 2012 season opener.

If he doesn't start, the failure doesn't lie on the shoulders of the rookie QB.

Guess the memo got lost in cyber-space.


The media clings to every word spoken, as if this gospel like revelation coming from the Browns front office has been laid at the feet of the minions. The Holmgren/Heckert World Tour has been an interesting listen; too bad softballs continue to be lobbed their way.

This same media which were quick to state the Browns were not interested in WR Kendall Wright. The same media which stated the Browns would not select QB Brandon Weeden at number-22 or at number-37.

Some debated whether RB Trent Richardson was a worthy prospect. I suppose too much Jim Brown spew can create such despair.

And WR Justin Blackmon at #4…..not so much. Never.


And my last words on former Browns RB Peyton Hillis. When issues surrounding Hillis crept up, theOBR reported that Hillis had become a malcontent, some within the locker room lost faith in him and the organization was disturbed by his actions and those from his former representative.

Now, Holmgren acknowledged Hillis had become a distraction and it was best to move on……..and the Browns had Richardson as "their guy" for more than a couple months.

Thanks again, Mike. We greatly appreciate when the organization finally confirms what we had worked diligently on for a couple months during the soap opera formerly known as Peyton Hillis.


Well, not all the media fall into the before-mentioned category noted. I'll gladly give a shout-out to's Tony Grossi.

After taking his talents to ESPNCleveland, the long-time Cleveland Plain Dealer beat writer covering the Browns has been quite enlightening to read and follow. I don't believe Grossi has ever been better.

Grossi for his part, whipped the collective asses of the major media outlets (you know, the big-players) in the greater Cleveland area throughout the draft reporting season with his commentary, article content, mock drafts and Twitter feed.

You may not like him. You may not respect him, but the man has been covering this team and the NFL for a long time and his opinion is worth at least listening to.


With all the back-hands and back-pats out of the way, it's time to get down to business.

- TheOBR has learned the Browns organization is deep in contract discussions with the majority of draft selections in the 2012 draft.

The Browns are hopeful all draftees will be under contract prior to June 1st. Those that are not will be provided an injury waiver to protect them in the event of injury.

- TheOBR has learned the organization will be tutoring rookie QB Brandon Weeden extensively. Not the slow-motion mode which was done with McCoy, but the collective offensive minds (well, the offense has been offensive, but I don't mean it in that manner just yet) are determined to get this young man on the field.

See, there is every reason imaginable to ready Weeden. When the organization, the team president and the head coach note that the WR's aren't as they seem as a collective unit and they go on to discuss Weeden being accurate and able to get the ball out quickly, everything points at the inability of McCoy.

- The tape of the 2011 season was a brutal truth to the lack of ability and confidence in McCoy, which is not entirely his fault.

McCoy and Shurmur had their differences throughout the 2011 season. The head coach wanted his offense run a specific way, while the former Texas Longhorns QB had some other ideas, such as how it was done at Texas.

Not a good way to get on the good side of the man which will ultimately determine your fate.

The bottom-line is, McCoy failed to get the ball out, struggled with his accuracy and did not gain the trust of the play-caller.

This column had the opportunity had the opportunity to gain the vantage point to truly evaluate what was supposed to occur and what did or did not and it was startling.

There were plenty of missed opportunities and it was easily to see why the organization has acted in the manner they have regarding the offense.

Just to clarify, the Browns did not have Texas A&M QB Ryan Tannehill rated higher than Weeden.

While Tannehill definitely had some appeal about him, there was much more development needed in his game for the Browns at a time such as they face.

- Little has been mentioned about rookie fourth round draft selection, LB James-Michael Johnson. The Browns were ecstatic Johnson was available and wasted little time in selecting the explosive, physical type LB.

With veteran LB Scott Fujita slated at this time to be suspended the first three games of the 2012 season, Johnson has an excellent opportunity to open eyes over the early summer and on into training camp.

When watching Johnson play on tape, one cannot overlook his intensity, raw explosiveness and relative quickness. While Johnson needs to be coached up at the next level in his coverage skills, he is not deficient and has the athleticism to grow.

This young man runs through a ball carrier, which is just the physical type presence needed in the tough AFC North.

We'll be back over the weekend with more "Check: This and That."


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