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  • Browns sure to improve Hard Knocks effect
    Browns sure to improve Hard Knocks effect
    Dave Algase
    Browns have done plenty of drafting in recent years. Now they've been drafted. The NFL has put Berea in the spotlight for the HBO series Hard Knocks. The reality show focuses on one team's storylines during training camp. Coaches don't generally welcome the potential distraction from preparing for the coming season. So when no franchise volunteers to appear, the league selects a team who hasn't appeared in the past decade, didn't make the playoffs either of the past two years, and doesn't have a new head coach. So the Browns, coming off only the second 0-16 season in league history, and with two of the top four overall draft picks newly in the fold, were the choice over the Bears, Buccaneers, Colts, Eagles, Ravens, Saints, and Titans. Is there a clear effect on wins and losses for teams that appear on Hard Knocks? This chart details the change in record of the featured teams from…
  • A third-round QB three-peat
    A third-round QB three-peat
    Dave Algase
    Last year I noted a strange coincidence with a trio of Browns quarterbacks who all were drafted in the third round had first names beginning with the third letter of the alphabet wore uniform numbers that were factors of three. Charlie Frye, Colt McCoy, and Cody Kessler can now be neatly packaged into a triangular box and stashed deep into a low shelf in Browns history. All three played about half the time as rookies but were eventually traded away for low draft consideration before the end of their first contracts. In Kessler's case, if he's on the Jaguars' game-day roster for at least six games, the Browns will net an extra seventh-rounder next spring. I confess that before the rookie wage scale took effect with the 2011 CBA, I liked the idea of trying to find a diamond in the rough at the game's premier position. Back then, high first-round draftees commanded…
  • 2020 foresight: the Browns' offense under construction
    2020 foresight: the Browns' offense under construction
    Dave Algase
    Let's assume that the Haslams don't fire Hue Jackson, the coaching staff, and the front office during or after the upcoming season. It goes against type, I know, but bear with me here. Let's assume we won't have yet another new crew of decision-makers coming in to clear out the roster to make room for their supposed mold of players. That is, the Danny Shelton trade -- offloading a first-round nose tackle ill-suited to the current defensive scheme for nominal consideration -- is the last of its type for a good long while. Let's take the moves we've seen from John Dorsey as evidence that he intends to set the Browns up to both leap forward drastically in 2018 and prepare a core nucleus for sustained success in the coming years. In light of the latter, the ouster of last year's best cornerback, 30-year-old Jason McCourty, makes somewhat more sense. Note that all…
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