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Life is good
The Super Bowl is finally over. I have never wanted a season to end faster than this one. Romeo Crennel comes to Cleveland with a ring for his thumb. Something the Steelers haven't been able to accomplish. He brings a freshness to Cleveland, like the aroma of coffee brewing and donuts baking. That is one of the few smells that can get my butte out of a warm bed these cold winter mornings.
The NFL is playing a meaningless game with its stars in Hawaii on Sunday. The game once again is void of a player from the Browns. Not that I'd watch it if it did. Do you remember in the day the NFL Champs would play a college all-star team in an exhibition game? Those games were much more intriguing.
The good news is that the Browns are once again amongst the undefeated and there is excitement in the air. It makes me want to sing, "The Sun'll Come Up Tomorrow." If you don't have the NFL Network for your viewing pleasure, the previous sentence might have gone over your head like a misjudged fly ball by Manny Ramirez.
I don't know about you, but this is the part of the season where I can't get enough information. I'll surf the web endless hours searching for hints on whom Crennel will hire to fill his staff. I will debate with anyone, naive enough to give me their ear, about what players the Browns should sign and what players should be shown the door.
I'm as eager as a twenty-year-old awaiting their next birthday for free agency to start on March 2. I've already compiled my wish list of players I think would look good in a Browns uniform.
By Draft Day self-proclaimed experts, myself included, will have claimed to know whom the Browns will take in the first round. Some will even attempt to predict all seven rounds. If anyone does that I'm taking them to Vegas all expenses paid.
I'll watch with nervous anticipation as NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue says, "With the third pick of the NFL Draft the Cleveland Browns select . . . " or "The Browns have traded the third pick of the NFL Draft to . . ."
As the words come out of Tagliabue's mouth I will either shake my fist in approval or shake my head in disbelief. One way or another I'll be shaking so give me that drink to mix.
I'll consume mini camp news with the same frenzy as a shark gobbling chum. I'll watch Training Camp with a careful eye trying to decide what players will make the cut. I'll burn my bald head sitting in the Berea sun hoping to get a glimpse of what to expect from this year's team. I will cross my fingers, or anything else for that matter, to keep the Browns healthy through the dawg days of summer.
I'll watch all four preseason games in a relaxed state. Though there will be a little nervousness when the starters are in the game.
If the Browns win I'll say, "No win is unimportant, it is something to build on."
If the Browns loose I'll say, "It's only preseason, the game doesn't count."
Then on that glorious Sunday afternoon in September the smells of tailgate parties will fill the air. I will reunite with friends I haven't seen since the last home game. I'll work my way to my seat talking to fans as I go. I may even talk smack to anyone wearing the colors of the opposing team. Then the team will run out from the tunnel. The hair stands up on the back of my neck. I wash down that lump in my throat with an overpriced beer. I fidget as I sing the National Anthem. Then for three plus hours all the world's problems are put on hold. It's time for Browns football. Life is good.
The Browns website recently ran an article requesting that fans submit letters on why they buy Browns tickets. Hopefully they intend on using these letters to find out what Browns fans really want to see from their team. But I have a feeling they will just use the letters as fillers on slow news days.
Art and Pat Modell will donate $10 million to assist in the building of a better heart institute at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. Art has a big heart and he shows it in many ways. Too bad in 1995 when he needed his heart the most it failed him.
Modell did all Browns fans a favor by firing Bill Belichick and hiring Ted Marchibroda in 1996 the first year the Ravens were in Baltimore. Imagine the Ravens with multiple Super Bowl trophies. There would not be enough Prozac manufactured to cure the depression that would cause.
Transactions of interest
There was some talk this week of the Browns hiring Kevin Higgins as quarterback coach. The Detroit Lions extended his contract as that same title on 2-11.