Adkins: Quick Hits from the In-Box

Questions. We have questions. And Lane Adkins has the no-nonsense answers. Here are Lane's latest thoughts on the direction of the team and roster battles heading into tonight's game.

From the forums of The Orange and Brown Report, my PM (private message inbox) has been filling up with questions regarding the team, specific players, and what is transpiring with the team. With the regular season right around the corner, here are Quick Hits from those the PM messages:

Q: How does the team not start Quinn, much less give him significant time to play, to show he is the best of the quarterbacks on the roster?

LA: The organization does not want to hurry Quinn into action for a couple different reasons. One, he still has more to digest in regards to the playbook and terminology. There is no reason to throw him out there against the Steelers, as this offensive unit still is working to grasp the complete offensive scheme. Also, this team could struggle out of the gate and there is no reason to put the rookie in that position, not when he has hopefully a long and very productive career ahead of him.


Q: If you had to select a player to keep on the roster between Harrison and Barclay, who would you select?

LA: At this time I would be inclined to keep Harrison. He has shown some ability to run the ball between the tackles, he has the quickness to bounce it to the outside, and he can play a role coming out of the backfield. What solidified my belief were his contributions on special teams. That being said, I like what Chris Barclay has to offer, and if this team did not have a kick-return type player such as Josh Cribbs, my thoughts would be slightly different. If Cribbs would grasp the third receiver role, the door may have/be open for Barclay due to his ability in the return game.


Q: Every year the fans get all excited and buy into the preseason hype, because the Browns win a game or two. But come the regular season, the story remains the same, the team is usually horrible and not bearable to watch. What is different this year?

LA: Being a fan can be a difficult thing at times, but it is about supporting your team. This Browns team in 2007 should be a better team, not just in the win column, but a much more competitive team that will hopefully put some points on the scoreboard. Conversely, the team has had some struggles grasping the new offensive scheme of coordinator Rob Chudzinski and they could struggle at the start of the season, as they play division rivals in the first four weeks.


Q: Do you think there is any chance the team keeps four quarterbacks on the roster, until they figure out who the best fit is and which gives them the best chance of winning?

LA: I do not see this team keeping four quarterbacks. It should be a telling sign when a team is ‘hoping' for a player to emerge and they still have yet to decide on the starter. I know Charlie Frye has all but been named the starter, but you never know what can happen between now and September 9th against the Steelers.


Q: I have read where you believe Charlie Frye, Brady Quinn, and Ken Dorsey will be the quarterbacks on the roster, come the regular season. Do you still feel this way and is there anything which could change the scenario?

LA: I see the three you noted as the QB's on the roster come opening day. Now, if a team makes an offer for Frye which is enticing for this organization, I could see them moving Frye and giving Anderson the job, in the short term.


Q: Does Jamal Lewis look that good in camp, as has been reported, or is he just that much better of a player than we are accustomed to seeing in a Browns uniform at running back?

LA: Good question and I do believe it is some of both. Lewis has looked good in camp, and he has displayed much better quickness and recognition when compared to others who have passed through Cleveland in recent memory. Still, he does not look like the Lewis of a few seasons ago. I am concerned somewhat about a hesitancy I see at times when he gets the handoff. This limits his explosiveness, though he does look very good coming out of the backfield. Regardless, with the improved offensive line, a healthy Lewis will be a factor.


Q: Just how bad is the defensive line and particularly the nose tackles, I have never seen a team so poor against the run, and it is like they are not trying?

LA: I'd agree with you on this aspect the defensive line of this team has shown very little in training camp and the preseason games and has played poorly. I am concerned that Ted Washington will continue to be pushed around and remain slow off the ball, while his primary running mate, Shaun Smith plays at defensive end in the absence of Orpheus Roye. Thus far, the signings of the Smith's during the off-season has not proven to be a wise investment, though this could change once the season begins. Depth along the entire defensive line is a concern and this team must stop the run if they are going to be competitive.


Q: We heard nothing but great things about rookie cornerback Eric Wright heading into training camp and during the practice sessions. Over the past couple weeks and in the preseason games, we have heard very little and seen very little of him, what gives?

LA: If you're a cornerback in the NFL, being invisible can be a good thing. Eric Wright has had a solid training camp, as good a camp as any rookie with the team. Actually, we could say his camp has been better than many, many veterans and he is just a rookie. Wright has done well staying with Edwards and Jurevicius in camp, as well as matching up against what the Chiefs, Lions, and Broncos had to offer.


Q: I know you have to be tired of talking about Brady Quinn. With all the negative press about his ability prior to the draft, you were one which believed he was going to be a very successful player at the professional level. Do you still feel that way today, of has your thoughts changes on Quinn?

LA: Glad you noticed my thoughts on Quinn prior to the draft and following the draft. Many of the people talking or evaluating these players rarely see them play, or they do so on a television set. There is a difference watching these young men play in person or viewing a coach's tape... these are much more telling than what you see on a television feed. I had the opportunity to see every snap Quinn had taken at Notre Dame and also spoke with his head coach Charlie Weis. When Weis and Quinn noted how prepared he was, they were not kidding. I see Quinn as being a much better than average player in this league, a potential star if the talent can be put together around him. This is why I don't want to see the young man thrust into the starting role, unless he is 100% the best candidate and most prepared, which he is not at this time.


Q: I was wondering if you could tell me how you got into sports writing and why you chose this profession. The sports journalism field is one that I have great interest in and I like to read what guys like you, Pat McManamon, and Steve Doerschuk have to say about the team.

LA: Pat and Steve are good guys and I read them as well. I got into this because of my love for sports, I enjoyed playing, talking, and breaking down the game. Way back when Ernie Accorsi was the GM of the Browns, he turned me onto some ideas, as well as the late, great Nev Chandler, for whom I had a great friendship. If not for the words of wisdom from Accorsi, the direction from Nev, and the inspiration of my late father, I would not have followed through with what is a dream profession, for me.

LA

 


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