Taylor's Tales From a Notebook

There's a light at the end of this tunnel. But if what JT is hearing is true, we may get a face full of train with it. Running us over. Again. Plus, more on Brodney Pool. (WARNING: Adult Language)

-- Brady, I've got a feeling we're not in Detroit anymore.

-- And then Shaun Rogers goes down with what looks to be a season-ending injury?  Somewhere over the rainbow there's a pot, but it's filled with nothing more than the remnants of a game-day Muni Lot Port-O-Let.

-- Honestly, what else can you say?  1-10, very few bright spots, even less hope.  Obviously, last season's end-of-the-year enema didn't take.  Is it time for another one?  Should it be time for another one?

-- After 12 weeks, 11 games and 10 losses, I'm at an utter and complete loss for words.  Almost.

-- The Detroit offensive explosion wasn't nearly enough to whitewash the utterly abysmal, embarrassing, dysfunctional, what-the-fuck-is-going-on season that is the 2009 Cleveland Browns.  Even in the first year of a one-man regime, this is simply not acceptable.  At least, it shouldn't be acceptable.  There is no excuse for what's become of the 2009 Cleveland Browns.  None.  Calling it "part of the process" is not acceptable.  It's not acceptable.  This one-man organization has taken any shred of dignity this club may have had and stripped it bare.  This organization's ass is showing, and the one-man wrecking crew has pantsed it.

-- Now, pardon me for a minute while I get something off my chest directed at the Puritans in the reading audience…

-- To those put off by my use of the word "fuck" in the previous note, save your keyboard and don't even write the email.  Sometimes, the word "fuck" is appropriate.  Sometimes, the word "fuck" is far from appropriate.  In this case, after this display added to the other abominations put on an NFL field by the Browns this season, I believe the word "fuck" is beyond appropriate.  Your mileage may vary on the appropriateness of the word "fuck", though.  I'll fucking grant you that.

-- I will say, though, that I did misspeak just a little bit earlier.  There is a little bit more than "less hope".  That hope, that sliver of something to hang on to in this abortion of a season, though, is predicated on the unknown – a new football executive.

-- Based on what I've been hearing of late, there's something that needs to be reiterated to owner Randy Lerner as he goes about his methodical search for a new football voice.  You need to allow whomever you hire to have the authority to evaluate the entire organization, up to and including the head coach.  If you don't, you will absolutely kill this organization.  You will kill it and run it further into the ground than your previous hires already have.  I know you read this stuff, Randy, and I'd strongly urge you to heed those words.  Allow whomever to make the call on Eric Mangini's fate.  You've been warned, and by people a helluva lot more powerful and knowledgeable than myself.

-- You're on a slippery slope, Randy, and seem hell-bent on doing things that have you and your organization falling straight into an abyss that would take years – if not decades -- from which to recover.  You love the Browns, live and die with this team, and have the chance to get things headed in the right direction.  Don't compound a mistake you made ten months ago by limiting the scope of what you've needed to do for your entire tenure as owner.

-- There's just no "fun" in this team anymore.  They're not fun to watch, not fun to talk about, not fun to write about.  Hell, they're not even much fun to bitch about anymore.  It's the same thing, game after game, year after year.  It's just getting old knowing that the only light at the end of the tunnel is Chris Palmer's runaway train making its annual whistle-stop tour through the city of Cleveland.  It's depressing, it's discouraging, and it's gotta stop at some point, right?  Right?  Right???

-- On the plus side, I believe I just set an OBR record for most times using the word "it's" in one paragraph.  So we have that going for us, which is good.

-- You can't run the football on any type of consistent basis, but you buttress that with the utter inability to stop the run with any consistency.  I'm not exactly the football equivalent of Norman Einstein, but that combination has seemed to absolutely, utterly destroy this organization from 1999 jump street.

-- I've said it before and I'll say it again: this team is in more dire need of a running back bell cow than any white man in history.  Any quarterback you put under center will fail and fail miserably when they are consistently and constantly put into third and sevens, third and eights.  Especially when the opposing defense knows that there is absolutely no one at the wide receiver position that can hurt them and they can pin their ears back and tee off on the QB.

-- The Browns don't scare anyone in the running game.  They don't scare anyone in the passing game.  The only thing they do on the offensive side of the ball is nauseate a dwindling and dying fan base.  Unless they face Detroit, of course.

-- For as much "progress" as Brady Quinn made last week against the Lions, he was equally craptastic against a better defense.  He wasn't helped by his "receivers' on a couple of occasions, but he was just off throughout most of the game.  Does that go back to having absolutely no one at the wide receiver position that can hurt a team other than the Browns?  Partly.  But it mostly goes back to, at least on this day, Quinn misfiring to open receivers on many an occasion.  Your job, Brady, is to put the ball into a position where the intended target can catch and make a play.  Stop worrying about whether or not they're gonna catch it, and start putting the ball where they can catch it.  You do that, it's out of your hands.  Literally.

-- That being said, there was some serious miscommunication going on in this game.  Not only weren't Quinn and Mohamed Massaquoi on the same page at all today, they were in different libraries in different countries.  A product of the quarterback competition, and the failure of Mangini to live up to his stated desire to pick a quarterback and stick with him?  Absolutely.  That's yet another strike against the current head coach, his handling (botching?) of the QB position this season.

-- And, for those of you looking for Charlie Weis to ride in on his white horse (God the help the equine tasked with that job) and save this offense?  Spygate was the reason that Lerner couldn't get his dream team of Scott Pioli and Mangini in place earlier this offseason.  It's very safe to say that Weis is in the very same neighborhood – if not the same house with the same coaching tree in the front yard -- as Pioli when it comes to his feelings toward the current Browns head coach.

-- If Brodney Pool did indeed suffer a concussion during the loss, it would be the fifth – not the fourth as is being reported elsewhere – of his four-plus seasons in the NFL, and it could very well be the end of his career.  Those close to Pool told me tonight that they "are very, very concerned" about his health right now.  "Six concussions?" one of the sources asked rhetorically.  "This is something [if it turns out to be another concussion] that we're going to have to sit down and really pray about."

-- It is time for Jamal Lewis to be put out to pasture.  He's had a great career, possibly a Hall of Fame one, but he is doing nothing but making an impotent offense even more limp.  Throw all the running game eggs into the Chris Jennings/Jerome Harrison basket.  Could it get any freaking worse?

-- Jason Trusnik is a keeper at linebacker.  Matt Roth, at first blush, looks like a football player.  That's pretty much all I have right now.

-- Ladies and gentlemen, your 2009 Cleveland Browns!

-- What in God's name is this run defense going to look like without Rogers in the middle?  For some reason, I'm thinking of the French Army in World War II at this moment.

-- But hey, on the bright side, the Browns are currently one of three one-win teams – with just one two-win team possibly mucking up the works – who are in the running to give an unproven collegiate player more guaranteed money than the GNP of some third-world countries.  So they have that going for them, which is good.

-- Oh, wait, another bright side: four of the five remaining games are at home.  Party favors, anyone?

-- I was willing to give Mangini the benefit of the doubt.  That benefit has expired in my eyes.  He's taken a four-win team less than two years removed from a 10-win season and turned it into an utter disgrace.  While he may indeed have "a plan", there's no excuse for how the early portion of the plan has been executed.  None.  You can rebuild and be competitive.  This team is showing no signs of being either.

-- It's beyond time to get a football executive in here to start the evaluation of this organization, an evaluation that should begin and end with whether or not Mangini is the right man to be in charge of 53 players on Sundays.


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