We six-legged critters are festive this time of year, just like you two-legged folks. Especially when dinner gets served. Hope you stuffed yourself like I did this weekend... the coaching staff didn't finish off the doughnut holes in the film room, which is pretty rare, so it's already been a great Holiday Season for this guy.
There hasn't been much to munch on in the local news of late, though. Cleveland doesn't have a shortage of turkeys to go around, though, at least based on my overhearing what passes for Browns buzz on the local cranberry kool-aid talk shows. And, ugh, those stale dishes in the local fish-wrap... it's abundantly clear to me that there are a lot of leftovers being slopped around.
Great. Now I'm getting hungry again. Here's the latest I've heard with some off-the-wall comments interjected:
- No, the Cleveland Browns are not going to give quarterback Derek Anderson sixty-million dollars because the offense can score against the best defenses in the National Football League. The Browns front office is going to let the season play out, tender him at the highest rate and then field calls. The NFL is a league of owners and GM's that just love to spend money, and, in this case, give up draft selections. The Browns do not want to deal away Anderson, but he is not receiving the mad man-love from the team he is getting from the press. There is plenty of work to do and Anderson must continue to progress, for his sake and the offense he presently runs. Anderson stays in Cleveland until the organization can see Brady Quinn in action, which has been put off due to the team actually being in a playoff race and with Anderson playing well.
- Did anyone happen to notice Minnesota Vikings running back Chester Taylor last Sunday? Just remember, if he comes available, the Browns are going to be an interested party.
- Word coming out of Chef Crennel's kitchen is he is serving up some additional smack to his defensive unit. The normally reserved Chef has been offering words of encouragement, such as "pull your heads out of you're a*@es and stay in position". Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham can be heard in the background putting together the menu, with Chef making changes when it matters most - that being game-time.
- Starting defensive end Shaun Smith is listed as questionable, but I've heard he won't play against the Houston Texans this upcoming Sunday unless the team physican can find a way to install a bionic knee replacement. Smith is expected to be ready to play in a couple weeks, but with a knee and a player of his size and stature, you really never know.
- Superman Cribbs is gaining the reputation around the league as being as good of a return specialist as Devin Hester in Chicago. Due to Cribbs' tremendous ability in the return game, we have been told the Cleveland defense doesn't mind giving up points as much because they know he will provide the offense great field-position to score.
- Despite the offense looking in a funk at times the past two weeks, something good is coming from the experience. Anderson is not throwing the ball up for grabs and the offense must learn to excel when the deep-ball is taken away. With the weather changing in Cleveland, the team needs to learn to move the ball on the ground and improve its short passing game.
- There is a rumor going around that the Browns need some help at the linebacker positions. Only athletes with size and quickness may apply. Actually, the linebackers in the 3-4 defense are extremely critical - their lack of quickness is killing this team, but the overall play has improved over the past couple weeks. We are hearing the organization intends on addressing this area in the off-season.