Browns Uncensored Chat Transcript

Who does one of our Insiders think it going to be a (capital letters) BREAKTHROUGH this year? What do the Insiders think of the new linebackers? Whither Ben Gay? David Carducci pinch-hits for John Taylor this week, and joins Lane in our weekly Browns Uncensored chat.

Ramllov Lane, what do you think of the guys they signed (six)
Ramllov It looked like a good DE and Guard
Artbtz The hammer is coming down
Lane Ram, the UDFA's are being held close to the vest by the team. They do not like to supply information, and request that the agents do likewise.
Artbtz The HAMMER is down.
Lane There are a few players that are of great interest, Mitchell being one of them
Lane Great size and a load of ability..........
Lane He is the #1 UDFA that the Browns will sign
MadDawgJimmyMac evening Lane. I ask the obvious. Why was Gay released so early and why didn't they try to trade him for draft picks?
Lane Releasing Gay when they did actually helps Gay. It will give him the opportunity to latch on somewhere..............
MadDawgJimmyMac But why no trade and get some picks? No value?
Lane It had become obvious that Gay didn't have a future with the Browns and the team desired to end the situation there
Lane Lets say that the string had run out on Gay and he didn't have market value.......in Cleveland he may have, but not leagtue wide
MadDawgJimmyMac Oh. Ok. Butch said he was done and no new players coming in after the draft. Now their coming in droves. Should we expect more UDFAs?
MadDawgJimmyMac Beside the 6 signed already.
MadDawgJimmyMac Hey Dave, welcome.
Artbtz David Carducci has joined us as well!
DavidCarducci Hello everyone
Lane Butch actually made reference that a half-dozen players could be brought in and at last count, they are 'rumored' to have six UDFA players signed
MadDawgJimmyMac Whats your opinion of our depth at this point? Playoff caliber yet?
Lane I believe that this team is in that ballpark
Artbtz You're up Edwardson. Piper is next.
Edwardson With the draft picks that were taken to improve special teams, how much of an impact do you really see them making? Specifically Andre.
Lane Injuries will be factor, especially if the young depth can come through
DavidCarducci My personal take on the depth is that it's improving, most notably in team speed with players like Bentley etc. The speed on special teams will be much improved
Edwardson How will they do two jerseys with A. Davis??? Will they use their entire names?
DavidCarducci Also at wide receiver. I like the fact that we are both bigger and faster with Davis taking over the role that Northcutt had
Lane Agreed......ST was an obvious weakness that basically embarrassed Davis in 2001
DavidCarducci I think they will have to do the full names.
Edwardson Do you think there is any trade value for Dennis Northcutt?
Lane Slim and none
Edwardson Last, do you see Green having an impact? Even with this OL?
DavidCarducci I think the special teams will be greatly improved. Davis seems to have a good feel for the game and very good vision for a guy who has really only played WR for a short time. I like his intelligence. I've talked with him twice now and he is clearly very bright. He picks up on things very quickly, and I think that will help him make a big impact right away
Edwardson Wasn't Davis a soccer player in HS? Those quick feet will help on punt returns
DavidCarducci Right now I don't see any trade value for Northcutt. I know I wouldn't trade for him. I think teams are worried that he plays scared, and also that he just can't get off the line in the NFL. Davis, however, will be able to get off the line. In Morgan and Davis you'll have two very strong wide receivers
Lane If the projected OL stays in tact and Green is healthy, I am of the belief that Green will be an effective RB as a rookie and should relieve some pressure off the shoulders of Couch. Adding speed at the WR spot was a target and the team has done that, they have the ability to stretch the field
Lane Yes, Davis was a soccer player and has extremely quick feet.
Edwardson Nice answer. that calls for a beer
Edwardson I'm done AB
DavidCarducci Take care Edwardson
Lane Later Edwardson
Edwardson thanks guys
Piper How do you see the Wide reciever Position playing out? Any more signings in the future?
Lane There remains some grumblings about McCardell, but I don't see it happening. We are looking at KJ, Morgan, Sanders, Davis, King, and we will some Jamel White on the flank
Piper what about Chris Carter no that the Dolphins told him to take a hike? Or did he burn his bridge for good?
Lane His bridge has been demolished
Piper LOL
Lane I believe that part of it is being utilized as some land fill material in the lake as we speak
DavidCarducci Carter won't be coming here, like Lane said. It's not a good fit. There are too many people coming out lately and talking about how bad he really is in the locker room
Piper Thanks Guys--David--You did a great job during the Draft--
Piper OUT
Lane That could actually be the best move this team did in the off-season........not signing Carter
DavidCarducci Thanks so much Piper. I appreciate it
Lane Dave did do an ass-kick job over the weekend!
DavidCarducci It was a fun draft
Lane Him and that guy named.........AB
ATownDawg First off, thanks to the Insiders for again taking their time to answer our questions. Second, and I mean no disrespect here, but Lane, do I need to get out the dental pliers here in order to get specific reasons (speculative rumor or fact) about why Ben Gay was released? Was he not doing the things he should have, or just maybe he didn't have the wits to do anything about it? What did you mean by 'It had become obvious that [msg continues in 20 secs]
ATownDawg he didn't have a future in Cleveland'? Thanks for your answers, I'll 'Hang up and listen'...out [msg complete]
ATownDawg They sure did Lane
Lane Ben Gay, the fan favorite and noted late arriver to the Berea facility...........
Lumpy Lane's article on Jamir Miller was insightful but also disturbing....any feel for Jamir's reaction yet guys? I thought he was a team leader-that the other players like, right or wrong?
Lane Lets see, Gay was kept here in 2001 as a player that the Browns had hoped that they may have caught lightning in a bottle with........
DavidCarducci Davis wasn't saying anything over the weekend. Clark did say that Gay was still in the picture. Clearly though he did not do enough to show he really wanted to make the most of the chance the Browns gave him. It's a shame because he really does have unbelievable natural ability. Watching him in practice every day, you would see so many flashes
Lane Bottom line, there was no room for Gay on the roster
Lumpy were Jamir and McKenzie tight???
Lane I haven't talked to Jamir or his agent, David Dunn lately :-), so at this time I can't add anything insightful.
DavidCarducci Knowing Jamir, I'm sure he'll do the typical shrug, ""I don't know, it just tells you that it's a business."" Be sure that this will be smoothed over by camp. Jamir and his teammates have a real mutual respect. It's obvious in the locker room. Nothing, including a rumored trade, is going to keep them from coming together. Remember, the Browns smoothed everything over with Corey Fuller, and he really was pissed when the Browns put him on the expansion list
Lane The Browns immediately put the spin control cycle on went the word got out that they were looking to deal him
Lumpy what is the feeling of the staff about Holcombe...if Couch goes down
Lumpy I'm done-thanks again for all the hard work you guys do for us fans
DavidCarducci I know Arians believes in Holcomb. I did a story on Kelly last year and talked to Arians. More importantly, Kelly believes in himself. There is a confidence in ability that I didn't see with Detmer, even though Detmer has had a more successful pro and college career. Kelly really believes that he will get a chance as a starter in the NFL someday. He compares himself to a Gannon, who labored as a backup then made the most of his shot.
Butch2K1 What are the plans for Boyer?
DavidCarducci Butch2K1, I really don't know. I have to believe they'll keep him around in pretty much the same roll. Holmes is still a bit of a question mark, and to dump Boyer and put your faith in any of the young linebackers is a big leap of faith. Holmes has not shown he can be a 4-3 MLB yet, and he's had injury problems in the past.
Butch2K1 Of all of the O-Lineman on the roster, how many do you think that the Browns will keep, and who do you think will be cut?
DavidCarducci Boyer is a nice insurance policy in that he is a smart player, kind of a throwback, and he has experience. He's been through the wars
Lane The latest that I have heard is that the Browns intend on keeping Boyer here for the 2002 season, in the same role that he was brought here for as a third down linebacker and a depth player
Lane Tough call, so early on the OL and roster
Butch2K1 Does Fowler have a legit shot of unseating Wolly, or is he going to compete for guard?
Lane Fowler will be given the opportunity to compete for a position on the OL
Butch2K1 Also, word on Roye and Wolly restructure?
DavidCarducci Right, it's too early to say. They still have to figure out who's playing where. Does O'Hara fit in as a possible starter at guard or is he the backup (OR STARTING) center. Is Tre at RG or LG? How far has Zukauskus come along? I know the Browns are very high on Zukauskus and O'Hara
Lane I don't know if Fowler can immediately unseat Wohlabaugh, but he is a talented center
DavidCarducci I still think Fowler was the best pickup in the draft. While Fowler isn't likely to unseat Wohlabaugh, though, O'Hara might be ready
Butch2K1 Are there any tackles in the Browns future via free agency or June 1st cuts
DavidCarducci Butch said on Sunday that he doesn't foresee any. Clark said that if someone comes available on June 1, maybe
Lane Depends on who is there........
Lane Looking at the guys on the market at this time, no
Artbtz That it Butch?
Butch2K1 Any fullback leads out there?
Butch2K1 Or is this team serious about no full back and the H-Back thing again?
Artbtz (Get ready Seibu)
Lane The Browns and the agent for Roye were scheduled to talk at some point either this week or early next week
DavidCarducci Not at the moment, that I know of.... I think the Browns are serious about using more single back, though
DavidCarducci with multiple TE
Lane Nothing new on the FB front that I have heard
Butch2K1 Thanks. I am out. War JJ Johnson.
Lane Dave, that is exactly what I have been hearing as well
seibu1 Is Dawson (WR) gone? Also, will the insiders have any info on minicamp this weekend or are you guys as shut out as we are? Thanks for being here guys.
DavidCarducci Take care Butch2K1
Lane I believe that Dawson will have a difficult time making this team and yes we will have a presence at mini-camp
Lane have a good one, Butch2K1
seibu1 What are the odds of Joaquin starting either this year or next?
DavidCarducci Highly unlikely that he'll start this year. It's such a big adjustment from college to the pros for an offensive lineman
Lane I don't see Joaquin starting in 2002, but he has an advantage knowing the line play, he is a fighter and a guy that gives it his all. Actually, I believe that he just may end up at LT in the future
Lane But as far as 2002 is concerned, longshot at best
DavidCarducci Right Lane. He's a hard guy not to root for considering how hard a worker he is and his desire to succeed. I love those types
DavidCarducci He's Rudy only thankfully, he's not a Golden domer
seibu1 LOL
seibu1 Any real workout warrior stories so far in conditioning?
DavidCarducci Sorry, hard to keep journalistic integrity when the Notre Dame subject comes up
DavidCarducci Hurts even more that I brought it up
DavidCarducci Yeah... Quincy Morgan has been a BIG-TIME STUD.... He's bigger, much bigger and faster. Sometimes bigger is a worry for a WR, but not in this case. I think this could be a breakthrough year for him. REMEMBER I SAID THAT.... BIG TIME BREAKTHROUGH... I know how hard he wants it. He's a dedicated kid
seibu1 man, that's great to hear
Artbtz (raised eyebrows)
seibu1 !!
seibu1 thanks guys, i'm done
kj Do you guys see Green getting upwards of 30 touches a game being the 3 down proto-type back that he is? That's it and thx for the good work over the weekend. Enjoyed it.
Artbtz You're up KJ
Lane I can add on Morgan that he has worked at an extensive length on his hand strength. He was told to improve that.
DavidCarducci I'm really high on him for this year. Yeah Quincy might not have had the greatest confidence and he's not going to break any records on any pre-draft test, but he really wants to succeed
Artbtz (DPG next, followed by Man)
Lane I think 30 touches may be a stretch, but Green if healthy will be the cargo carrier.
Lane He can be a 3 down back, down and distance will dictate that though, White will get opportunities on third down in some capacity
DavidCarducci Hi KJ, I see him in the long term as a 30-carry guy. I think the Browns will do everything they can to keep Jackson involved, in part because they want to see if he can stay on the field and also to see if he can be a breakaway threat. Davis has been successful with 1-2 puches in Miami, see James-Jackson and Jackson-Portis. I think he'd love to do that to some extent here with Green getting two series, then Jackson getting one as a changeup (not really a Maddux changeup, but a changeup none the less)
DavidCarducci Davis tried to do that last year to some extent with White-Gay, White-Jackson and Jackson-Gay in various games
Lane Green is not short of confidence, desire, and tremendous physical tools
DPG Hey Dawgs! This is like chatting with the DREAM TEAM :-) Couldn't Gay have been a sp teamer? BD said their were spots on the roster for such players. Loved his intensity and athleticism. He had to be better than Fair. FA JJ, and BD pet 3rd rounder JJ, youre thoughts. How Fast is the UDFA Dimirti?
DavidCarducci nice spelling again David. May, I need to hand back in that college diploma
Lane Gay's spot on the roster went beyond ability
DavidCarducci Sure Gay could have been a very good special teamer with his size and speed, and the fact that he's a gamer. But gamers aren't exactly what Davis wants. If Gay wasn't pulling his weight in the off-season program, then he wasn't following through on the chance he was given. It's a statement by Butch, and even with Gay's talent, the fact that Green is on board made it a statement Butch can afford to make
Lane As much talent that Gay may have, his other issues far outweigh that potential
DavidCarducci Butch made a statement by giving him a chance in that the Browns would leave no stone un-turned to find talent. He then made a statement that if you want to be a Brown, you have to be willing to work and compete, and that means all year. You could see that in his face when he talked about this weekend being ""a voluntary"" camp. Yeah, it's voluntary, but everyone WILL be there.
DPG I'm not AT ALL impressed with Ariens offense didn't look like Indys - was it the talent. I'm very high on Tims new weapons Green and Davis do you see O Rookie of the yr or will we get ""jobbed"" like Anthony Henry? thats all. Thank you
Lane The Browns do not have the weapons to even slightly resemble the Indy offense. The WR's, RB, TE, OL.........there is simply no comparison
Lane When the talent is assembled, we will see a similar look
DavidCarducci I don't think Davis will be a rookie of the year candidate. I think he'll be a nice addition this year, but I see him contributing mostly on special teams. Sure he'll get a lot of chances in the offense, but it'll take some time for him. He's never been a real threat yet. He didn't have the opportunity at Va. Tech over the last two years.
Lane The Browns are getting closer on the talent scale, they have seriously improved their offensive team speed and talent.
DavidCarducci Right, plus it's a work in progress. It's really not the Indy offense, but an off-shoot of that offense. Indy is the base, now the Browns are seeing how they can work off of that base, fitting in the players they have and doing what they can to make the most of the talent available.
Lane Agreed.....Davis' main contribution in 2002 figures to be in the return game, I believe that Morgan will have a fantastic season
DavidCarducci There are parts of lots of other offenses as well as Indy
DavidCarducci It's really a hybrid
Man In general - this appears to be an intelligent, hard working, overachieving, group of leaders that the Browns drafted. Looks like Butch is really putting his imprint on the team with these players. Any thoughts?
Lane I agree. The linebackers drafted are all players that play through the play, never giving up. The talent acquired at the LB position is going to surprise many, maybe not in the 2002 season, but we should see them more in 2003. Taylor and Bentley especially, Davis is a fireplug and will learn from a similiar type player in Earl Holmes...........
Lane Davis is a WR that really should have gone in the late first round and the Browns were fortunate to land him, he has great speed that Davis was looking for
DavidCarducci I think any coach builds a team in his image. Butch is a hard-working guy who respects hard-working players. That's why he saw something in Gonzalez as a walk-on freshman and had the forsight to say ""maybe you'll get to put that education to work when you finish your 10-to-15 year pro career."" Butch understands that talent alone is not enough to succeed. If you can find talent and desire, that's what wins championships.
Lane Davis and Pete Garcia know talent
Man Has Al Lerner ever discussed what happens after he's gone? Hopefully it won't be for many years. What can you tell us about his son?
DavidCarducci Originally, I had heard that his son was not interested in taking over the team. I've since heard that has changed. Really, I don't know much about him. I've seen him a few times, but I've never spoken with him
Lane I have met Randy Lerner once, he appears to be a bright and extremely intelligent man, god willing, Al Lerner will be with us for years to come
Man Last question - will Orpheus Roye be with the Browns in 2002? Thanks for your great work.
Lane If he doesn't restructure, I don't think so, but at this time he is still listed as a starting DT on the depth chart
DavidCarducci I think if he's willing to restructure, he'll be here. Orpheus has talent. He has speed. He has versatility. And he'd have a spot on most teams. He just hasn't had a chance to really get comfortable in one position. Last year he was pressured into playing end because of Courtney's injury. That didn't help his season.
Lane Much will depend on where the Browns are salary cap wise and depth wise......
DavidCarducci I agree with Lane
DavidCarducci As usual
newdawg after last season, Quincy Morgan said he was going to train with Cris Carter. Has he kept his promise?
Lane LOL, thanks bud.......
DavidCarducci Actually, Quincy has been doing a lot of work in Berea. I don't know if his training has included work with Carter. All I can tell you is he has worked hard to make himself a faster, bigger and stronger WR
DavidCarducci I should have thought to ask Q, but I didn't
newdawg the olinemen we added in FA are all good drive blockers. Fowler is a good pass block but not drive blocker. he also likened his game to wholie. What's up with this?
Lane Dave, while we are talking about Q, what noticable differences have you noticed in him
DavidCarducci With Q, size, chizzled, looks like a whole different person. I haven't seen him run or catch, but I've heard he's faster to go along with his size. Like I said, with WR's there's good bulk and bad bulk. What I hear is that this is really good bulk, and I like the dedication he's shown to change his body and his running style
DavidCarducci I shouldn't say running style, actually. THe willingness to do what it takes to keep or improve speed while adding size. That's not easy from what I've heard. I've added size, myself, but not speed (that's a joke son, laugh)
Lane Having the opportunity to talk with Fowler's position coach, he believes that Fowler is a very solid technician that plays much more physical than Fowler gives himself credit for.
Lane LOL.....no Dave, I have added size :-)
newdawg it has always been my impression that the defense has been based on quickness and speed. of the 3 lb's we drafted bentley has good speed (4.62). taylor has average speed (4.86). davis is dog slow (5.0). why the contradiction.
DavidCarducci As for the question about the Olinemen, it's interesting. The Browns tried to change the way Oben blocked. I guess the idea is that Fowler ahs the potential to change his style. If he's seen as a G in this offense, he'd have to do that. But at the same time, like Lane said, he is a technician. Either way, that's going to help. You can afford, I think, to be more of a technician than a powerful, blow-your-man off the ball blocker. If he's at guard, with what the Browns want him to do, he needs to be physical. From what I've seen he has that in his game
newdawg it has always been my impression that the defense has been based on quickness and speed. of the 3 lb's we drafted bentley has good speed (4.62). taylor has average speed (4.86). davis is dog slow (5.0). why the contradiction.
Lane I don't necessarily agree with the time you have on Taylor. The Browns had him closer to 4.7 in their workout from what we were told here. Davis wants the quickness element defensively, Bentley and Taylor have displayed quickness and awareness on the field that the Browns really liked, especially Bentley at the Senior Bowl against very good competition.
DavidCarducci Good question. The Browns have never had speed at inside linebacker, which I don't understand and might be a reason for the trade rumors with Miller. The Browns currently have two LB's with below average speed in Holmes and Miller. Davis continues that trend. His speed might be better than those times, though. I've also seen 4.8.
Lane All three linebackers are high motor guys
BUCKEYE Do you guys have any insight on what the coaching staff thinks of young guard from BC, Zukauskas..listed at 6'6"" 315, heard he has a nasty streak..I've always held hope he could be a solid big nasty inside olineman for us...you mentioned they are high on him, does he have potential to start season after next with another year of reps behind him?
DavidCarducci Yeah. THey love Zukauskas. They really love him. I think I wrote something about that earlier and on Sunday. They are hoping he'll compete for a job. THey liked Zukauskus last year, too. In fact, Davis said before the 7th round pick this year that they'd like to get another Zukauskus type with that pick. Really, they did that with Gonzalez, in that they are better than 7th round talent with great desire and work ethic
DavidCarducci Zukauskus is one of those guys who just needs a year or two of grooming before he's ready to be a factor as an NFL player. He's got some real potential
Lane When he came to the Browns he was a stiff player, he lumbered, they have worked with him and he is becoming physically stronger and much better on his feet.
BUCKEYE So Dawson is gone? I always thought he had potential too, good hands, found creases in the D. Can we at least get something for him? 2000 Draft Round 2 Northcutt, 3a Prentice, 3b Dawson...not the greatest picks looking back (hindsight 20/20). I remember reading Manning in Indy wanted Dawson, perhaps trade him there?
BUCKEYE Thanks a lot fellas, appreciate it.. I'm done.
Lane That is always a possibility, Andre King really proved to Butch what he knew all along that given the opportunity, he could be productive. In King you have Dawson basically. If you has to choose between the two for a roster spot, the selection would be King based on his play and the Dawson injury factor.
DavidCarducci I don't know that he's gone. Remember, Butch thought Northcutt was the best WR on the roster after QB school and minicamp last year. He was a bit off there. No matter how hard they try to hold Dawson down, all he does is make plays when given the chance (save one game this year where he dropped two consecutive balls, but I'm of the opinion that the sun was in his eyes ... again bad joke). Seriously, if he is given a chance to compete, I think he'll make the most of it, and despite the below-average speed, he could find a spot.
hammb Hi guys. Maybe I'm wierd, but I LOVE LBs, I don't think you can ever have too many. Anyways, the most exciting pick of the draft for me was Andra Davis. This kid can be a stud. I honestly believe, from what I saw of him, that if not for the injuries he would've been the best LB in the draft. Any ideas as to how healthy he is? Are we going to see a pre-injury Andra Davis, or will he never regain that level of performance? [msg continues in 20 secs]
hammb On his speed, I think he makes his speed by reading the plays quicker than most. He will flat out murder people, I LOVE that. [msg complete]
DavidCarducci I agree with Lane, but at the same time you can bring in the age factor, and if King and Dawson are the same player, maybe Davis goes with Dawson considering the fact that he'll be around longer. Of course, King has more potential to impact the special teams. He's a bit more intense, and, well, he can do more things. SO, i just contradicted myself. Stick around. I'll do it again in a few minutes I'm sure
Lane Many scouts that we talked to prior to the draft felt that Davis was a few months away from being really healthy and could be a solid player at the NFL level
Lane Others on the other hand believe that he is a step slow
Lane Nobody compared him to Wali......whether that is good or bad will be seen
DavidCarducci It's hard to say with Andra. He says he's healthy, and for now we have to take him at his word, I guess. None of us have seen him play in person or in a while, so we'll have to wait until minicamp, qb school and training camp to get a real feel
hammb On Quincy Morgan, its sounding like he's really dedicated himself this season. If he's bulked up & gotten faster as you say, could we be seeing a guy with D.Boston type measurables? I realize a breakout year like he had may be a bit much to ask from Q, but are we looking at a guy who's gotten that much better physically?
Lane Q took the 2001 season hard, he was disappointed that he didn't play better and took to heart what the coaching staff wanted out of him. Terry Robiskie has worked wonders with Q from what I have been told
DavidCarducci Sure, in fact I would have classified him as an early-Boston type. Boston has become bigger and bigger as well. I won't say he's the next Boston because he still has to prove that he can keep his concentration going for 60 minutes, or for that matter for one full practice. If he can do that, he has everything you need to be a true No. 1
Lane Physically, lets see where he is at mentally
DavidCarducci Thanks hammb
Artbtz Alright, thanks guys... and thanks for the questions. We'll do this again next Wednesday night, and we'll be introducing a new feature as part of Browns Uncensored. (heh heh)
Lane Thanks hammb and everybody else that joined us tonight.........
Lane Also, thanks to our special guest, Dave Carducci
Piper Thanks guys
DavidCarducci Thanks for everything again guys. It was fun, and you all have really great insight and questions

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