Taylor's Tales From A Notebook

Can you guess the curse words this game inspired John Taylor to utter somewhere during the first half? Can you guess what's going to happen on September 7th if this team's play does not improve? In either case, it ain't pretty, but JT is here to put it all in calm, rational, not-safe-for-the-kids-to-read perspective.

-- In the hours leading up to the 4:00 EST kick-off, this day had all the makings of a "Greatest Day Ever" VH-1 episode in the Taylor household. The fridge was full of beer. The oldest daughter was spending the night at a friend's house, the youngest at grandma's. The fridge was full of beer. The crock pot was filled with a chili cheese salsa dip that just oozed testosterone and flatulence. The fridge was full of beer. The Browns were on first, then the Bristol night race at 8:00 EST. The fridge was full of beer. Then…

-- The game actually started. We actually waited for this? Again? But the fridge was still full of beer, so I had that going for me. Which is nice.

-- You would think that, seeing as how this is a pay-per-view site, that you could drop f-bombs and other select expletives at your own discretion after two games in the span of five days that we all just witnessed. But you would be wrong. Deep breath, and…

-- **** this mother ******* ****. **** me. ****. ******* ***********.

-- There. That's better.

-- And if anyone can guess exactly what's behind those asterisks, there's a twelve-pack of Cleveland's finest in it for you. Just e-mail me at johntaylor at theobr.com with your answers. I'll reveal the winner, the correct answer and the best/most creative guesses in this space when hell freezes over. Or McBride reboots for an extended period of time. Whichever comes first.

-- This has been such a disjointed training camp and pre-season thus far. It's like a new pair of underwear. They look good in the package but, when you put them on, they just don't feel comfortable. You stretch and lunge... stretch and lunge... trying to get that just-right fit, but nothing works. Yeah, they are somewhat of an off-brand, and the price looked very appealing, but still. They keep riding up and binding – splitting Siskel and Ebert at times – even as you remember how they looked in the checkout line as you try to justify the purchase. You just know they should fit – know it deep in your loins – but something isn't right.

-- That's been the last five weeks or so. No flow whatsoever. Getting into a groove is a far-flung dream. This player's hurt, that player's dinged, and another is banged up. Add it all up, x3, and it equals a 0-3 start and the fire extinguishers being put to the sky-high hopes that raged like a wild fire throughout the off-season. Reality – and injuries – do indeed bite.

-- And as for Brady Quinn? Ummm, not so good. Sure, he showed flashes here and there but, overall, it was not a very good curtain-opening for his starting debut. Sure, you could lob the injury excuse into the mix, but excuses are like rectums: everybody's got one. Oh, wait, that's opinions, isn't it? Well, either way, Quinn played like Wynn for the most part.

-- I'd be lying if I said that the play of the first-team offensive line over the last two games is not mildly disconcerting. Their play against the Giants? Understandable; their play against the Lions' abysmal front four? Unacceptable. If that unit is not in 2007 form, this is going to be a looong season. Regardless of who lines up behind center.

-- Be still my beating heart, but what was that I saw? Pressure on the QB? Speaking of which, if I were Kamerion Wimbley, I'd demand that Jeff Backus buy me dinner first next time if he's going to grope and grab like that in pass protection.

-- If Shaun Rogers can stay healthy and motivated, holy sweet baby Jesus. He's a load, and an immensely talented one at that. Rogers, not The Lord. Although I'm certain He could hold His own at the nose if the need arose. Although I see Him as more of a Moss-type deep threat at wide receiver, personally. His frame screams "deep post".

-- Travis Wilson, help your quarterback out, please. Please? Given my level of frustration with you, I can only imagine where your position coach's is at. All those off-season and early training camp gains? Poof. Gone. As well as, maybe, a roster spot.

-- And was that a Donte' Stallworth sighting? I swear, somehow those Bigfoot guys were involved with the reappearance. No wonder they couldn't produce the hairy half-man, half-whatever; they were too busy searching for a multi-million dollar free-agent football player.

-- Alex Hall, you can be on my team and develop on my roster any day of the week, but especially on Sunday's. And Monday night's. And the assorted Thursday's when the schedule calls for it, which won't be next year if this pre-season leaks into the regular season. There is just something about that kid that screams "playmaker".

-- Mike Adams and Nick Sorensen as the starting safeties? What's next, Boyce Green and Cleo Miller lining up in a split-back formation? Steve Holden in the slot, with Ricky Feacher split wide left? I know it's pre-season, and there are injuries, but for the love of Clinton Burrell

-- Speaking of the starting safeties, not much was gained in judging the relative merits of the corners with that kind of "help" behind them. If the corners played back any further, they would've had to pay for a seat and get gouged on beer purchases.

-- Can we stop with this charade that Jerome Harrison is nothing but a third-down, scat-type running back? And that Jason Wright could actually carry the load should Jamal Lewis go down with a season-ending injury? I would love nothing more than to find out exactly what Harrison did to this coaching staff. It might surpass my solving "The Strange Case of Louis Leonard" (available on DVD and Blu-Ray Sept. 23 at participating Walgreens).

-- I think my opinion of dreadlocked players is directly proportional to the skill level of the player involved. Josh Cribbs'? Don't even notice ‘em. Terry Cousin's? Annoys the living shit out of me.

-- All I know is, I wanna hear Bernie Kosar say "Braylon Edwards" really fast three straight times. In the fourth quarter. Every single week.

-- For anyone interested, and in the interest of full disclosure, I haven't the slightest idea how the Browns fared in the fourth quarter, let alone if said quarter was actually played. Have I told you lately that I truly despise the NFL's exhibition schedule?

-- Well, that's all for tonight. I need to rush off and find out exactly what happened in the rhythmic gymnastics competition NBC cut away from to get to the "game", then get ready for Bristol. And Woody, yes, when you read this, I am indeed jealous and anxiously awaiting your call so I can hear that roar. #88 and ABK. Hoo-Rah!

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