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I'm glad you are staying in the Cleveland community, I hope they are paying you enough to stay for more then one year!
I was hoping you can shed some of your thought process in making a choice to not pursue another newspaper gig? As I realize that you are suppose to be unbiased while covering the Browns, is it difficult for you not to root for them as you have been covering them for a while now? And if you are a fan did that play a part in your decision to work for the OBR?
Good luck with your new position and I look forward to reading your "stuff" as I am a premium subscriber to the OBR.
Folks at the OBR have been good to me – you included. The support and kind words offered are something I'll never forget.
Perhaps I should explain one thing, though, and that is I really can't leave the Cleveland area because of a personal family situation. That really cuts back on my employment opportunities. If things really do fall apart at the Beacon Journal (It does not look good, but as Yogi said, it ain't over ‘til it's over), I am limited to looking for work either on national internet sites or with something associated with the Browns.
I am continuing with the Beacon Journal as long as they will have me – and there is a small chance for a recall. But I've got a couple other freelance gigs going, one looking at the league after all the Sunday games for NBCsports.com. Barry kindly offered me a spot this season, but it's not a full-time gig. It's part-time – until I figure out what the heck to do with my life, which is a large chore because on top of everything else the bedroom needs to be painted. That being said, doing this now makes a lot of sense because it keeps me in touch with a passionate group of fans, and may allow me to repay the kindness extended my way.
As for writing and being a fan … I have to admit it's not tough at all. This may surprise you, but even though I care about the Browns I really find it easy not to let it affect my writing. If I did not have objectivity, there would be no credibility. And if I had no credibility, something crazy would happen and I'd get laid off.
I have enjoyed your work for years and wish you the best of luck going forward. I am confident that your talents will make this transition an easy one and you will land on your feet – my only hope is that it continues to be with my beloved Browns.
I wrote and called the Beacon Journal upon learning of the terrible decision being considered, but apparently big business simply doesn't care about the opinions of their customers. The entire thing stinks and having a local "fish wrap" with writers we get to know and look forward to on a regular basis is exactly the type of thing that makes America great.
My fear is that big business is getting in the way of many things and tearing the fabric of our society away. But I digress.
I don't know how long we will get to have you with us at the OBR – but safe to say – that this is exactly the type of website that makes being a fan of a local team great. As you know the OBR has built itself to where it is today by hard work, long hours and dedication to its subscribers, and has provided the type of service that loyal fans have grown to expect. You coming aboard on a regular basis is further proof that good people find each other and is why the OBR is the first place I come for my Browns news (even before the Beacon Journal did what they did). So – a hearty thank you to you and a hearty thank you to the OBR.
Here are my First and Tens for the week:
Do you think that big conglomerate can swoop in and buy WKNR? I wonder if they can make up another "seniority clause" for Mr. Roda. Steelers fan running the radio in Browns Town – blasphemy!
How is LeCharles Bentley doing in his rehab? Exactly how bad was the injury on a scale from 1 to 10? Will he be on the sidelines during home games? I think he can be a leader in gym shorts and crutches.
What do you think about the guards? Andruzzi looked pretty rough in the pre-season.
What can we do about CB depth? It seems harder to come by than I thought at the start of training camp.
Jason Wright? Really?
By my count… 14 Butch/Clark picks/FA Acquisitions are still on the team. It could be as low as 10 realistically. Was it that bad? Or are Phil and Crennel making a real effort to put their own stamp on things – rationale be damned?
If we lose Big Ted or a real starting CB – how many loses will it equate to? I don't even want to imagine.
Why is it that big money players that have rarely or never been hurt in their young careers prior to coming to Cleveland can't stay on the field once here? Is there a jinx?
How can everyone dislike Carthon, have him disrespect everyone on the sidelines all day (you can see it on TV – with his smirks and head shakes) and still be the OC?
How is it possible that Phil and company didn't know about Ephraim's four-game suspension? That plus this January's fiasco make me wonder what exactly is going on sometimes in the front office … and that is with my orange and brown glasses firmly in place.
Answer one – answer all. I am glad to have you around still – looking forward to your insight and knowledge at the OBR… Best of luck – Go Browns!
You cheated. Asking 10 questions in one is really violating the spirit of the Geneva Convention. I shall give answers to all this one time, but they will be brief.
- I like Roda. A lot. He states his opinion, which is what he is paid to
do. As for his growing up in Pittsburgh: So what. To hint that he can't be
objective about the Browns and Steelers because he grew up in Pittsburgh is the
same as saying I can't be objective about the Browns because I grew up in
Cleveland. Reporting demands professionalism, and professionalism demands
objectivity. Besides, all these complaints ring similar to folks complaining
about what they are watching on TV – all they have to do is turn it off. If you
don't like what I write you won't read. If you don't like Roda, listen to
country music. The Kenny Chesney concert was fabulous until Uncle Cracker (or
however he spells it) came out. Why does Kenny Chesney think we paid money to
hear someone else sing?
- Don't know. Haven't seen him. Injured guys tend to disappear. And we
reporters are really not allowed to be there when they wake up so we can make
them fluffy pancakes and a fruit rollup for breakfast. On a 1-10 (is this the
modified Saffer-Simpson?) it was a nine. Bad injury. As for being on the
sidelines, he may when he is mobile enough to avoid being hit. As for being a
leader, this is another baffling one. If a team loses and a guy is on the
sideline, he's just there. If they win, he leads. Winning breeds leading. Just
go win the game.
- Will be worth watching. New England thought Andruzzi was old for his age
(does that make sense?); Crennel wanted him.
- Not much now. Mike Haynes isn't on the waiver wire.
- Combination. Every coach and GM thinks higher of the guys they drafted
than the ones drafted previously. Davis did the same thing – and in fact blew up
a playoff team in part because of it (I believe). That being said, all anyone
can ask is the moves make sense, and so far it's hard to argue the logic of
Savage's moves. Time will tell if they work.
- Losing Washington is two losses. Losing a corner is harder to tell
because when Daylon McCutcheon comes back the Browns will have three starting
- I'm more concerned why people who wait in line at Caribou for five
minutes have to study the menu once they're first in line.
- Romeo Crennel likes Carthon. Terrelle Smith likes Carthon. I'm sure his
family does as well. So to say everyone dislikes him is probably inaccurate.
That being said, I think Carthon is under a lot of pressure this year.
- As I understand, they had a sniff of a problem and called the league and the drug guy at the league did not return the call until after Ephraim had been signed. I think the key point is this: Ephraim was never signed to be a starter, but to practice and try to work his way up the roster. With that in mind, the idea of signing him did not seem like a huge risk. Whether it was or not is up to the individual judging. As for January's fiasco, it was just that – a fiasco.
Barry McBride (no relation to Mickey, he claims) is a great guy. A few years ago we struck up a nice friendship. the business I was running back then was one of his first advertisers. The OBR should be a nice way for you to stay connected to the Browns ... and I KNOW something good is around the corner for you.
A good guy just cannot be without a good (paying) job for long.
This letter is from one of the long-time buddies I've met through covering the Browns. He keeps asking me to move to Charlottesville, and there's a lot to be said for doing that. But I can't move, so maybe Bob, you could move the mountains and Monticello and the wineries and the University of Virginia and all that is fantastically wonderful about Charlottesville to Cleveland in your Toby Keith-sponsored Ford F-150?
I am a long-time fan of your writing. I was chagrined at your circumstances with the paper, but knew you would land on your feet. The well qualified and productive always do.
Now to my question. Why do you think the Browns are standing pat with Dorsey? He had a miserable camp and preseason. There has to be someone better available.
The question may be moot if the Browns sign a QB before you get a chance to answer.
a.k.a. Professor Dawg
Amazing coincidence – I was chagrined as well.
Savage explained himself the other day, and I'd sum it up this way: Finding a quality backup is not as easy as we all think. He said there is some "atrocious" quarterback play in the league, so maybe the guys available weren't worth the price.
It's a gamble. No getting around that.
When you were with the site before, I was a bit of a vocal critic, asking you to be more Browns-oriented and less Pat oriented, not have your picture on the column headings, blah, blah, blah.
All that still stands, BUT, I wanted to let you know I am glad you are back with OBR. You have been a big supporter of Cleveland and of the Browns, and you got a raw deal at the Beacon. I look forward to your columns.
Thanks. You know … the idea to put my picture on those stories was not mine. I mean, have you looked at my picture? In truth, the reason I would not want that is that I have never felt I'm the news. What I cover is the news. So even though we can have fun with it – it is football – the bottom line is that I'm not important. What happens on the field is.
That being said, I do like the idea of feeding my daughters, so I appreciate the kind words.