What We've Been Told

Lane Adkins is at it again! Here's what to believe (and not) from what you've been reading in the press lately about the Browns. Now it's more important than ever to separate reality from perception...

- Speculation regarding the status of the Cleveland Browns' scouts been seeping through the league. With the new top men in place, the Browns are in the process of evaluating all aspects of the organization. TheOBR noted early on to expect scouting changes, which is not uncommon when the top of the org chart is revamped as drastically as Cleveland's has been this season. The development should not be considered a surprise. 

- While many are quick to assume that new general manager George Kokinis is simply a "'yes man" hire for head coach Eric Mangini, I wouldn't be so quick to jump to that conclusion. Yes, Mangini did talk of Kokinis during the interview process with team owner Randy Lerner and was happy to see his ex-mate from days in Cleveland and Baltimore hired to head-up personnel issues. Still, Mangini does not and will not have final authority over Kokinis. If anything - and I'll use this term strongly - teamwork between the two men is expected at all times. This is a much different approach compared to the supposed tandem of Phil Savage and Romeo Crennel, where Savage excelled in displaying his authority.

- As reports surface pointing to the Browns as becoming something close to a dictatorship under the direction of Mangini and Kokinis, fans need to maintain a grip on what is really happening in Berea. Mangini and Kokinis may not always be the most pleasant personalities to deal with, but there is not likely to be a tandem that will outwork the two new Browns leaders. As many rush to print anything negative about the new head coach, numerous players around the league (and specifically in New York) note that Mangini is not nearly as deaf to players and coaches as many would like the public to believe. While Mangini can be abrasive and does not say much, many he has dealt with are quick to note he did become increasingly receptive during his tenure in New York.

- Not everything regarding Mangini is rosy. He will not be given a free pass. The new head coach was not well-received by some assistant coaching candidates he spoke to. His reputation from his days in New York still looms large, and a couple potential coaches ultimately did not interview with Mangini due to that reputation.

- Many leaks have been passed in the Browns information ship, so you haven't read about it much, but theOBR has learned the new regime in Cleveland does not see this team roster being void of legitimate talent at many positions. A change of scheme, a new coaching approach, and further developing talent are looked on as a means to turn around the 4-12 record from 2008, quickly.

- As the off-season begins to heat up, the Browns are digesting everything from the 2008 season and trying to determine which players can be "playmakers" and at which position. What is transpiring in Cleveland is that a new set of eyes has an appreciation for what some players can provide, but without the baggage which appeared to be an ongoing issue within the prior regime.

- Some have speculated the Browns were going to become develop a West Coast offensive scheme team. In truth, the talent in place and background of the head coach, offensive coordinator and QB's coach dictates something different. The New England offensive scheme (Weis offense) appears to be the favorite base offense - with a WCO flair due to Brian Daboll's experience with this scheme in New York as the QB's coach.

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