Lane's 'Believe It Or Not...'

Ripping a page straight from Ripley's, Lane Adkins takes a look at what was true and what wasn't rumor-wise as the Browns chugged their way through the offseason.

Believe it or not...

...the Cleveland Browns did not attempt to trade QB Brady Quinn this off-season. Talks with the Denver Broncos did note Quinn, but the QB was never part of any actual trade discussion/negotiation.

...the Browns were reluctant to deal WR Braylon Edwards to the New York Giants. This reluctance and the Giants unwillingness to surrender a first-round draft selection quashed any hopes of a deal.

...during the trade flurry on draft day, the Browns remained interested in WR's Jeremy Maclin and Hakeem Nicks.

...the Browns had decided in the hours prior to the draft that they would not have selected QB Mark Sanchez with the fifth pick in the draft.

...there was some debate whether the team could pass on LB Aaron Curry, if he were on the board at number-five. The belief is the Browns were going to play the trade card and determine what move provided greater value to the team.

...the Browns offered WR Joe Jurevicius, a local favorite and player who was under contract, the opportunity to remain with the team if he would accept a pay cut. The cut was offered to the tune of 10% above the veteran minimum according to those close to the issue. Rather than show any respect for the player coming off multiple surgical procedures to remove a staph infection that's career-threatening, the team gave Jurevicius a "take it or leave it" offer.

...starting right tackle Kevin Shaffer was provided with basically a "take it or leave it" offer as well. Shaffer, signed by the Browns to be the starting left tackle, was moved to right tackle after an uneventful 2006 season and replaced by then-rookie Joe Thomas in 2007. The Browns did eventfully offer Shaffer a deal with incentives and non-guaranteed dollars; he declined and the team signed veteran John St. Clair to an identical contract.

...offensive lineman Ryan Tucker, a starting-quality player coming off a fractured hip and knee woes was targeted by the organization for a pay cut or release. Unlike Jurevicius, Tucker accepted the barely-above-veteran-minimum salary to remain with the team, as well as not having to uproot his family as his playing career enters its final stages. speaking with 6 members of the player roster in recent weeks, there is a clear consensus that changes within the Browns organization should prove beneficial. While the players really liked former head coach Romeo Crennel as a man, there was too many issues between players and the coaching staff. Eric Mangini has come in, and he and his staff have instilled accountability to those in the locker room. That move is appreciated by the players on the roster, although many would like to see Mangini be more personable. But, at the least, the players believe they have an idea of what they have to deal with.

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