Grantham, RAC: A Rift?

Underneath the happy exterior, are there problems inside the Berea complex? The OBR's John Taylor has the scoop, exclusively for Orange and Brown Report subscribers...

We've been wrestling with this for the past week, trying to figure out a way to write up a story on a potentially explosive issue brewing in Berea.

Well, after much thought, numerous confirmation phone calls and many writes and re-writes, we're just going to put it out there in all of its black and white glory.

According to multiple sources, including players and persons employed by the Cleveland Browns, there is—and has been—a seismic rift between head coach Romeo Crennel and defensive coordinator Todd Grantham. And the once rock-solid relationship between the twosome has spiraled downhill so far and so precipitously that it may have reached the point of no return.

It has been intimated by some involved in the situation that the rift is so large, in fact, that unless the coaching duo can mend their fences, it will become an either/or situation.  Either Crennel goes, or Grantham goes.

As general manager Phil Savage talked of an upcoming contract extension/raise for Crennel in yesterday's press conference, that can mean one of only two things, sources said.

One, the two sides have worked out their differences and will now walk arm-in-arm into the 2008 season.

Or, two, Grantham will soon walk arm-around-moving box through the front doors of Berea.

And just what was the genesis of the problems between Crennel and Grantham? According to several players, none of whom would speak on the record, Grantham "schemed behind RAC's back" in an effort to get him fired before the bye so that he could take over as the interim head coach and, possibly, secure the position for years to come.

Additionally, there were "scheme and personnel issues" between not only Grantham and Crennel, but between Grantham and players on the defensive side of the ball. In particular, veterans have been exasperated over Grantham's unwillingness to even listen to input on various defensive issues.

While no one we've spoken with has said with any degree of certainty that Grantham is on his way out, one thing is certain.

It will come as no surprise, and with a great sense of relief, to many involved if the defensive coordinator soon adds "ex-" to his title.

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