Thursday Cleveland Browns Scuttlebutt

Confirmed tidbits and rumors that you haven't heard anywhere else, including some notes on trades, an unofficial position for an old friend, and what AFC North scouts are saying about big ol' Ted Washington (pictured). More good stuff you won't find anywhere else but the OBR...

Even though he has no official role with the Browns—and hasn't since their return in 1999—Bernie Kosar does have an open invitation for an unofficial "job" with the club.

Two league sources tell The OBR that both owner Randy Lerner and general manager Phil Savage have requested that Kosar be in attendance for the whole of the 2006 schedule in order to assess the progress of quarterback Charlie Frye.

Lerner, in particular, is concerned over the fact that there is no ex-NFL QB currently on head coach Romeo Crennel's staff.  Additionally, and as it stands now, there is no veteran QB of note on the roster.

(No offense, Mr. Dorsey.)

With the Browns' wagon firmly hitched to Frye for the foreseeable future, both Lerner and Savage feel it prudent to add an extra set of eyes to the ongoing process of evaluating Frye.

On Kosar's part, he has tentatively accepted the offer, although personal issues may prevent the ex-Browns QB from attending every game.

There is speculation floating around league circles that Kosar could be in line for an official position with the Browns, but The OBR has not yet been able to nail down anything concrete on that front.


The aroma (stench?) of trade rumors have been wafting around Berea for the better part of two months, and The OBR, with its ever-vigilant nose on high alert, has caught wind of yet another trade nugget.

While rumors of a potential trade for a center have gained steamed since the unexpected departure Bob Hallen earlier this week, it seems as though the Browns have been investigating potential deals since the day LeCharles Bentley went down with a season-ending knee injury on the first day of camp.

Rumor has it that teams may be asking for running back William Green AND a draft pick in exchange for a center of starting caliber.  The OBR has yet to ascertain which teams have been contacted and what players have been targeted, but it is believed that at least one of those teams is the Philadelphia Eagles, with the specific player being veteran Hank Fraley.

The play of Alonzo Ephraim and Sweaty Rob Smith in tonight's game will go a long way in determining whether or not these rumors continue to gain steam.


With all of the negative news emanating from Berea over the last two weeks, it sure would be nice to hear something other than "(fill in the blank) will be out indefinitely with a (pick random injury) to his (pick random body part)".

Have no fear, though.  A ray of light is here.

In an e-mail exchange with a scout from an AFC North rival, The OBR has gleaned at least an idea of how one particular unit is being viewed around the North.

During the offseason, Crennel and Savage seemed to make a concerted effort to improve the linebacking corps.  From the addition of Willie McGinest via free agency and Kamerion Wimbley, D'Qwell Jackson and Leon Williams in the draft, to allowing Ben Taylor and Kenard Lang to leave—which is the very definition of addition by subtraction—the Browns made every effort to strengthen that substandard unit.

And those additions have not gone unnoticed.

"One thing about this division, every club has a talented group (of linebackers) and that's a big area where the Browns have been lacking, to say the least," the scout said.

"Now, with the personnel they've added, they have the potential to be not only one of the better groups in the division, but in all of football as well.  They'll need another outside ‘backer (to replace McGinest) eventually, but for the next coupla years they're gonna be a force that needs to be dealt with."


The scout also sang the praises of nose tackle Ted Washington, saying "I don't care if he's 38 or 48 or 58, he's gonna draw a double team on every single snap he takes.  You don't think that's gonna make (Andra) Davis and whoever else starts inside better?"

"They (the inside LBs) should offer to help pay part of whatever signing bonus Washington got for what he can do for their careers."

In the opinion of the scout, the addition of Washington was a close second to signing LeCharles Bentley as far as Browns offseason moves go.

"Nothing against (last year's starter Jason) Fisk, but going from him to Washington is like, have you ever seen the old Charlie Atlas ads with the 98-pound weakling who gets sand kicked in his face until he bulks up?  That's the upgrade the Browns have made.  (Fisk) got tossed around play after play.  That won't happen this year."


One more thought from the AFC North scout, regarding the Browns rumored interest in Vinny Testaverde as an option should current backup quarterback Ken Dorsey continue to falter.

"With the shape the OL is in right now, would you want a 42-year-old QB with little or no mobility standing back there?"

Just some food for thought.

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