Highlights from Ask the Insiders

Bryant McKinnie never seems to stray too far from the minds of Browns fans. He makes a cameo appearance in this weeks Highlights from Ask the Insiders.

redright: Against KC #24 (Robert Griffith) missed an open tackle on Gonzales. Carolina ....Dee Brown. Indianapolis...Mungro.

Is this the pro-bowler we welcomed with open arms? What is wrong? Why has he missed so many important tackles? He's supposed to be a pro-bowler--right? ... Can we expect better from Griffith next year or is he washed up?

Mike McLain: Butch Davis was asked this week if he got his money's worth in Griffith. Davis pointed to Griffith's shoulder injury, which was severe, and he also noted that Griffith made several impressive plays near the line of scrimmage when he didn't have to take on a runner straight-on.

Davis concluded that Griffith has been better than last year's starter at strong safety. Earl Little, undoubtedly, didn't like to hear those words.

marktroy: Butch likes his boy Lang, and you gotta believe he's pretty frustrated with Courtney. Both make big money and Butch now knows they play the same position.  Give us your best early guess on what gives here next year. I know you all think a McKinnie trade could be a possibility. Who, if either, goes and why?

Lane Adkins: I believe that Butch would like to have both of the defensive ends here in 2003, but if one were to go, it would be Brown. Brown has underachieved if you look at his draft status and expectations, throughout his time here.

Lang is a Davis guy, he brought him into the fold, those players generally stick longer, for obvious reasons. On McKinnie, don't put it past the front office to make a push to obtain him, it isn't a secret that they like him very much and the player also would like to play here for Davis.

Sorry, I can't add the "why's or who said's" to the last paragraph at this time :-)

Lumpy: What is the general feeling from the coaching staff concerning:

Earl Holmes
Kenard Lang
Robert Griffith
Barry Stokes
Ryan Tucker
Darrin Hambrick

Are these guys expected to be back next year? It's early to commit to anything, I understand, but what do ya'll think?

Mike McLain: I have no idea what the coaching staff is thinking, but here are a few educated guesses:

Kenard Lang? Will return. He plays the run well, is a leader in the locker room and is respected by Butch Davis.

Darren Hambrick? Likely gone. Jamir Miller will be back, and Kevin Bentley could be a starter. Hambrick was probably looked at as a stop-gap measure.

Earl Holmes? Probably gone. Butch likes Andra Davis. He thinks Davis will be ready to start in the middle next year, which means there's no reason to keep a high-priced, older player like Holmes.

Robert Griffith? Probably stays. Griffith has missed some key tackles, but he's the best tackler in the deep secondary.

Barry Stokes? Might be gone. He's the type of guy you keep around to fill holes when injuries hit, but he's not considered a long-term starter. There will be new faces on the line next season, and I don't think there will be enough jobs to retain Stokes.

Ryan Tucker? Definitely stays. He's had trouble with procedure penalties, but he's the best of the five starters on the line.

Lane Adkins: Mike is right on the money with his assessment..........from what has come my way!

Woowoo: Even if C. Brown stays off the I.R. this year, what is his future w/ this team? I am VERY disappointed w/ his play thus far in his career. Wasn't he the closest player to a sure thing in the '00 draft... "the perfect footbal player"? What is the status of his current contract? What is his trade value? Would there be any interest? OR are the Browns stuck with him only to hope and pray he'll improve? On a team that needs desperately needs a hero, who are we left to hope for?

Dave Carducci: Courtney is locked up for three more seasons. From what I have found, the contract does not contain an option similar to the one the Browns picked up after three years with Tim Couch.

The Browns can go in any of a number of directions with Brown. They can try to trade him, which I think would be the preferable decision from the Browns perspective. They can hope the light goes on for him and possibly make some changes in the staff, hoping that another coach or coordinator can finally tap into both Brown and Warren's potential.

The Browns could move Brown back to the left defensive end, where several scouts, teammates, former teammates and other experts think he would have his best chance to finally break out.

They could also just release him. According to SportsIllustrated a few weeks back, one of Brown's close friends said that Brown is worried he will be released because of a lack of production. I think that is the least likely option. Brown is still strong against the run. He still makes plays. He just has not been the impact pass rushing end the Browns had hoped he would be. Dumping a No. 1 overall pick is tough to do. To do that would be to admit that they made a huge mistake with that pick, and also for Davis (a former DL coach), it would be to admit that he could not get anything out of a guy with No. 1 overall talent.

thebattleship: Why would they throw the ball (against the Colts) into the endzone on 1st down?? If it was caught, the Colts had about 90 seconds to go kick a field goal??? What the hell were they thinking. Thank god Couch ran on the one down to wind the clock down or if we scored they would have had plenty of time to go score??????

David Carducci: I don't think they handled the last four plays well.

Tony Grossi asked a very good question regarding the Browns not using William Green once they reached the 10 yard line.

Of course, you get the touchdown when you can and worry about the time situation later, but in that situation, with the Colts on their heals and plenty of time remaining, you can afford to use your entire playbook and run William Green on first, probably get inside the 5, then you have the option of play action, which has proven to be very effective in that position.

While you take the touchdown whenever you can get it, you are right that a first down score would have left plenty of time for the Colts, as they showed in Denver a few weeks ago.

I also don't like the decision to use Quincy Morgan as a decoy at the end. This is a big receiver, who can use his athleticism, jumping ability and strength to dominate smaller receivers in that situation. He should be a red-zone threat.

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