Bernie's Insiders, The Magazine Excerpts

Bernie, Eddie and Reggie lead a field of excerpts from articles published in the April 8th issue of Bernie's Insiders, The Magazine.

The April edition of Bernie's Insiders, The Magazine is now available on newstands in NE Ohio.  This issue provides the most in-depth draft coverage of the Cleveland Browns found anywhere. 

To order a subscription to the magazine, call 1-800-366-0514 or click on the link below to use our easy online order form.

Here are a few excerpts from this issue...


"Recalling The Supplemental Draft of 1985" by Bernie Kosar

The story surrounding the supplemental draft of 1985 and my being selected by the Browns was very complicated and yet, very simple.

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Much has been said and written about my entrance into the NFL, but the truth is I never thought or talked about playing in the NFL until after the 1985 Fiesta Bowl.

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The thought of "going pro" had never entered my mind previously because my class had another year left and I had two years of eligibility remaining after being "redshirted" my freshmen year.

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He also pointed out that in this case, which was somewhat unique, I could hold off and declare myself eligible for the supplemental draft in the summer.  It was the first time I had ever heard of something called the "supplemental draft.

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Vinnie approached me not long after the Fiesta Bowl and told me he was thinking about leaving the University of Miami and was going to transfer to the University of Louisville to play for Coach Schnellenberger, our original coach and the one who recruited the two of us to Miami in the first place.  I then knew I had to make a quick decision.

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The agent situation was a real learning experience to say the least.

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Although it was no secret I wanted to play in Cleveland, it wasn't as if I despised the thought of playing in Minnesota.  Minnesota wasn't my first choice, Cleveland was, but it wasn't a bad choice either.

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An interesting sidenote to all this was the supplemental draft rules were changed immediately afterwards.



"Better Up Front - Three Line Additions Should Make Offense Better" by Jeff Schudel

As of April 6, the Browns had signed six free agents from other teams - right tackle Ryan Tucker from the Rams, defensive end Kenard Lang from the Redskins, safety Robert Griffith from the Vikings, wide receiver Chris Sanders from the Titans, offensive lineman Barry Stokes from the Packers and middle linebacker Earl Holmes from the Steelers.

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Davis has refused to blame the poor rushing average on running back James Jackson.

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"When you come into the league, sometimes you think you can get by without film study. The longer you play, the more important you realize film study is.  That's all part of preparation." - Ryan Tucker

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Davis likes Tucker because Tucker has nastiness on the football field needed to be a successful run blocker.  Tucker is replacing Chanoine, who was more of a finesse player.

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Tucker said it didn't take much to turn the Rams into a dominant team..."I see the same thing with this team," Tucker said.



"Improved Running Game Will Aid Air Attack" by Reggie Langhorne

In each of the first three years since coming back, the Cleveland Browns have used a second-round draft pick to select a wide receiver...I would hope they don't follow that same pattern this year.

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The Jury is still out on Northcutt, but I am convinced Morgan is going to be the real deal.

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Still, the receiving corps is good enough to be successful providing the rest of the offense improves.

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I know the team signed free agent offensive linemen this offseason, but I would still look to grab at least on offensive lineman early in the draft.

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Draft an offensive lineman, but don't expect him to immediately burst onto the scene.

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A month ago or so ago, the team came close to signing veteran wide receiver Cris Carter.  In some ways, I think that would have been an excellent move.



"He's Big, He's Bad - And Bryant McKinnie Is Ready To Take His Place in NFL" by Lane Adkins

In a year boasting numerous talented offensive line prospects, many NFL scouts consider McKinnie a virtual lock to be selected within the first seven selections in the upcoming NFL draft.

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"I decided I wanted to play on the defensive line.  Reggie White was my favorite player at the time. He was a star.  I never thought about being an offensive lineman.  You never heard anything about those guys, growing up." - Bryant McKinnie

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"I wasn't happy that Coach Davis left," he said.  "In our after-the-season meeting he told the team he wasn't going anywhere and that we had work to do.  There was no reason to believe that he wouldn't be here." - Bryant McKinnie

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McKinnie and his offensive line partners believe that knowing each players traits would help them on the football field.

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" I have played against the best college football has to offer...We shut them all down.  I am proud to have been part of such a great program, with a great buch of guys," McKinnie said.  "Not giving up a sack in JC, none here in Miami, not even in practice is self-satisfying.  I learned a lot and I am ready for the challenge of the NFL." - Bryant McKinnie



"Clark's Job Tougher, And He Loves It" by Frank Derry

For the first time, Clark won't be drafting one of the top three players available.  Instead, the Browns will be right smack in the middle - No. 16 - of the first round.

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Now, Clark and his scouts know exactly the type of player Davis wants at each position.

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The Browns beleive they have significantly improved themselves on the offensiveline through free agency, although exactly where all the parts will fit is not known.

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Of significance to the Browns is the fact that, because they are not drafting in the top five, they will not have to pay their draft picks nearly as much as last year.  In fact, the combined money paid all nine (the total number of Browns draft picks this year) will be less than what Gerard Warren got last year.

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Although many are speculating the Browns will lean toward a running back in the first round, my guess would be offensive guard Toniu Fonoti from Nebraska if indeed he is available.



"No Complaints - He Didn't Live Up To The Hype, But Phipps Not Disappointed" by Chuck Muir

"In no way am I disappointed with my time in Cleveland," Phipps said.

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For the past ten years, Phipps has been with Northwestern Mutual Life in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. 

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"I don't miss playing, but I absolutely follow the game all the time." - Mike Phipps

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Phipps never experienced much joy in a Browns uniform, however.

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Phipps essentially said there are no "what ifs" in life, just what is.

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"From watching what Butch Davis did here at Miami, he is the perfect coach for a team that wants to build." - Mike Phipps



"Draftees Must Take Advatage Of Situation" by Eddie Johnson

The message I'd send to each and every one of these players, be it a first rounder or free agent, is that you must give everything you have in order to receive anything.

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It was nothing for Dan Marino to walk up under center and say, 'Hey, Eddie, do me a favor.  Don't call out the play this time.  Let's just see if you guys can stop us without you yelling it out.'

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I remember being disappointed when I wasn't taken on the first day of the draft.

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When I got to training camp, I had one goal in mind.  I wanted to be so impressive that they had to notice me.

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I seized the moment.  I took advantage of every chance I got to play and, for the most part, I played well.


Bernie's Insiders, The Magazine is printed 24 times a year, including weekly during the regular season.

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