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  • Browns rebuild hits the high gear
    Browns rebuild hits the high gear
    Dave Algase
    Count me solidly among the growing number of Browns fans and NFL observers who really like what we've seen from new GM John Dorsey and crew this off-season. It's been an aggressive, multi-front effort to improve the roster top to bottom. But it's not all Dorsey's doing. Clearly the Haslams have unshackled their purse strings and personnel pickers. Following up a 1-15 season with an even worse one ought to do that to an owner. Gone now -- and I hope for forever -- are the days when talented contributors entering their professional prime with the team that drafted and developed them would leave as unrestricted free agents. That multiyear failing left gaping holes across the roster and robbed the Browns of continuity, veteran leadership, and depth. Combine that with the tactics of deferring draft capital and of cutting starters to avoid paying veteran salaries, and it was clear that the severe suckage was…
  • 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…
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