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The letters, in my mind, that stand for "Another Sunday Without Football."
As I write this feature on Guard Kelvin Garmon this Sunday, July 4th, I feel sorry for myself as I do every Sunday that passes without seeing those glorious orange helmets storm onto an NFL field.
On the opposite end of "glorious" is what many national publications have in mind for the Browns this coming season.
Prior to training camp, it seems like I may as well switch over to NASCAR or hockey (providing they don't go on strike).
Many national publications, in so many words, regard the Browns DOA already. Fourth in the division at best, being railroaded out of the NFL into the ACC at worst.
Ok, the ACC thing may be a slight exaggeration but if you've read even one paragraph on the Browns from a national "expert," you would agree they've been pretty darn harsh in their assessment of the upcoming season.
What a breath of fresh air to go over my interview tape with Kelvin Garmon.
He feels sorry for Browns fans being subjected to this continuous assault on our hope for a good season.
"They (the fans) hear that kind of stuff and it downs them….I hate for them to read that and believe and buy into that because the NFL is so equal now……it depends on the team that's going to stay healthy, gel the most in training camp and just get through the season healthy and play the best."
For the rest of the interview he had my attention. Not that it takes much to pay attention to someone 6'2" and 350 pounds.
Garmon is a guy that impresses me (and not just because he outweighs me by almost 200 pounds). He's a guy that realizes that being big and talented will only take you so far. A lot of people in the NFL are big and talented. It's what you do off the field that gives you the advantage according to him.
"I think film is the biggest thing. I'm watching my whole season from last year and the Browns whole season from last year…..then you look at teams your playing early in the season. The biggest thing is trying to get the small edge. The guy that puts the most work off the field is the guy that usually wins during the game."
The game. The game. I want to watch football soooo bad.
Oh, forgive my digression. Still feeling sorry for myself.
I especially can't wait for this season because my hope is building with Garmon quote after Garmon quote.
He's an offensive guard that likes to pull. According to him, there are a lot of guards in the NFL that sit in the middle and just pound.
In the style of Cowboys' All-Pro Guard Larry Allen (who is a mentor to Garmon), he loves to get on the outside and hit people. Hard. Very hard.
"The whole thing is about breaking people's wills. A lot of these guys that are superstars, they get on these interviews and they talk a lot of game but once the game starts they don't like to get hit in the mouth, and I know because I've done it (laughs)…they get real quiet"
Get ready for the new Browns attitude. The new Browns offense if you will. It's safe to assume that wide receivers are not going to be gracing this year's media guide. That's not to disrespect any of the Browns receivers but rather to say that the Browns are going to be a nasty pound it at you running team this year. In addition to getting back to the playoffs and winning a Super Bowl, Garmon wants 2004 to end with the Browns finishing as a top five rushing team.
It's not too much of a reach for us to believe that the Browns could develop into a heckuva rushing team this year. Garmon feels that Terrelle Smith is one of the best fullbacks in the league, and has a lot of respect for the Browns running backs.
"They got the speed, they got the talent. I watched the film. These guys are good,"
Coming from a guy that has blocked for Emmitt Smith and LaDanian Tomlinson, that's a pretty good assessment.
Garmon is a guy that will put the work in off the field, has a real passion for the game that showed through all through the interview, loves the idea of playing for great fans in Cleveland and is absolutely convinced that the Browns are on the upswing.
"This team is very talented. I think we're going to shock a lot of people this year."
Special tape recorder to hook up to my phone: $129.00
Tape for the interview: $1.00
Long distance charges to talk to Kelvin Garmon: $5.00
Getting some positive news about the team: Priceless.
I'm feeling a little better.
How about you?