Will Marcus Mariota be the next Andrew Luck or Matt Barkley? Will he move up the ranks of his peers or will any potential warts shine brighter? While this is all filed under To Be Determined, we can say with the utmost certainty that the 6-foot-4-inch former Heisman hopeful who blends size with quickness and the panache needed to be on the cover of national magazines will not be a member of the Cleveland Browns. At least when it comes to 2014, anyway.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are facing fines and could lose a draft pick after coach Mike Tomlin’s balancing act on the sidelines on Thursday, reports CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora.
According to a league source, there likely will be stiff financial penalties, regardless of the coach’s intent, based on past disciplines for similar incidents. The team also is worried, per sources, that they might lose a late-round draft pick as well.
Pittsburgh lost to Baltimore on Thursday to fall to 5-7 on the season. They beat Cleveland last Sunday in decisive fashion, but then the Tomlin incident of watching a kick return on the scoreboard and nearly interfering with Ravens’ Jacoby Jones marred a tough loss in the spotlight.
In 2009, Jets assistant Sal Alosi was part of the team’s tripping crew for returns and the team was fined $100,000. Alosi was suspended for the rest of the year and later fired. More serious punishments did not occur since Alosi was a low-level assistant. Alosi is now the strength coach for UCLA.
The Browns own the 2014 third-round and fourth-round picks of the Steelers after draft day trades back in April. Pittsburgh received fourth- and fifth-rounders in the separate deals to make selections in the 2013 draft. They also traded a conditional draft pick for left tackle Levi Brown earlier in the season.
Certainly, losing another draft pick, even if in the sixth or seventh round, would again hurt the Steelers going into the 2014 season. They’re heating up after a slow start to the season.
While We’re Waiting is a space on the WaitingForNextYear website where we share links every day. We’ve been doing it for about four years or so. Denny Mayo used to be much more amusing with his intros, if you recall. You know the drill: Email us with suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sad state of affairs currently for the Cavs: “The Cavaliers have had more than three years to renovate their house since to make it habitable for a ‘King’ to again occupy. And it still won’t pass any self-respecting appraiser’s inspection. Not after six first-round selections during that span, four in the top-four overall. Not after a coaching change, back to Mike Brown. Not after all the most recent preseason’s hype and hope. Since James left, the Cavaliers are 68-177, including 4-11 this season. This Cavaliers edition doesn’t look any better than the one that went 24-58 last season, or 21-45 the season prior. Worse, their young cornerstones, supposed to rising to the surface by now, are sinking like rocks.” [Ethan Scolnick/Bleacher Report] [Read more...]
Ohio State junior cornerback Bradley Roby will declare for the 2014 NFL Draft following the end of the Buckeyes’ season. This relatively unsurprising news was declared by Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer on Wednesday.
Scout.com ranks Roby as the No. 2 cornerback eligible for the 2014 Draft, 15th overall, coming in behind only Oregon’s Ifo Ekpre-Olomu.
Roby, 5-feet-11 and 192 pounds, has eight interceptions and 32 pass breakups in his career at Ohio State. He considered entering the 2013 NFL Draft a year ago as a redshirt sophomore, but decided to return to Ohio State for “one more year.” Roby entered the season as a potential top-10 pick, but his rocky junior campaign—marred with mental mistakes, a suspension, missed tackles and an ejection due to “targeting”—has raised some red flags about his potential at the NFL level.
Meyer said Roby, who is techincally a junior, will be honored on “Senior Day” when Ohio State plays host to Indiana on Saturday.
[Related: Bradley Roby and Picking Nits]
The Browns let the media know today that Brian Hoyer’s ACL surgery went well and as expected today. The quarterback that momentarily electrified the Cleveland Browns fan base is expected to make a full recovery.
#Browns QB Brian Hoyer underwent successful ACL surgery today at the Cleveland Clinic. Expected to make full recovery.
— Tom Reed (@treed1919) October 18, 2013
The Browns, of course, will be happy to have Hoyer back in the second year of the two-year deal that he signed with the Browns this off-season. Exactly who else will join him on the Browns’ QB depth chart by the time Hoyer is ready to play football again is anybody’s guess.
Brandon Weeden will continue to start for the Browns for the foreseeable future. There’s also little doubt that Browns fans will be peppered with the rising and falling stocks of every college quarterback that projects to go anywhere near the first round of the upcoming NFL Draft.
Cleveland Browns assistant general manager Ray Farmer was in College Station on Saturday afternoon, reportedly to scout much-discussed Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel. While it was mentioned in passing on NBC’s Sunday Night Football, Sports Illustrated’s Peter King reports in his most recent “Monday Morning Quarterback” column, that Farmer was in attendance for the college season’s most anticipated game in order to watch the nation’s most talked about player.
While the Heisman Trophy winner’s team fell short, he did not disappoint by putting up 562 yards of total offense against one of the nation’s best defenses. Manziel, in his third year of eligibility at Texas A&M, could declare for the 2014 draft but continues to be one of the more polarizing players in the game due to immense talent married with a bevy of off-field issues. Most recently, Manziel was the subject on an NCAA investigation wherein the player allegedly benefitted from multiple autograph brokers. He was deemed not guilty, but was suspended for a half of the team’s Opening Day contest against Rice due to the the violation of NCAA bylaw 220.127.116.11 which states that student-athletes cannot permit their names or likenesses to be used for commercial purposes, including to advertise, recommend or promote sales of commercial products, or accept payment for the use of their names or likenesses.
The Browns, now 0-2 on the 2013 season, have once again fell victim to poor play from second-year quarterback Brandon Weeden. Weeden was the second-first round draft selection of the Browns just one season ago. Unfortunately, his team has scored just one touchdown on the year and has converted on just five of 29 third-down plays. Manziel, just 6-foot-1 and playing largely in a spread offense, isn’t considered to be a prototypical quarterback prospect, but continues to draw some comparison’s to Seattle’s Russell Wilson.
The team has yet to confirm, but Ian Rapoport is reporting that the Browns have let go of their 6th round draft choice from this year, Jamoris Slaughter.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) August 31, 2013
While it looks like a failure of the draft room, it might be wise to withhold judgement for a minute. Slaughter was recovering from an injury to his achilles and the Browns might feel that that combined with him being a 6th round pick will allow them to get him to their practice squad.
[Related: NFL Rumors: Browns to cut WR David Nelson]
While We’re Waiting is the daily morning link roundup that WFNY has been serving up for breakfast for the last several years. We hope you enjoy the following recent collection of yummy and nutritious Cleveland sports-related articles. Anything else to add? Email us at email@example.com.
Is another change of scenery enough for the All-Star center to turn his career around? “Andrew Bynum smiled and spoke confidently. That’s probably more than Bynum did last season with the Philadelphia 76ers, and for the Cleveland Cavaliers, it’s a pretty good start.” [Sam Amico/FOX Sports Ohio] [Read more...]
Cornerback Leon McFadden, a third-round selection in the 2013 NFL Draft, has reached a four-year contract agreement with the Cleveland Browns, the team announced Friday evening.
The Browns reached a deal with their seventh-round draft pick, defensive end Armonty Bryant, earlier in the day on Friday. Neither player, nor still-unsigned No. 6 overall selection DE/OLB Barkevious Mingo, had reached deals with the Browns as of yesterday with rookies scheduled to report to training camp today.
McFadden, 22, was highly regarded out of San Diego State despite being an undersized cornerback at only 5-foot-10. He was a three-year starter for the Aztecs after being initially recruited as a wide receiver. He had 61 total tackles and three interceptions (two returned for touchdowns) in the 2012 season.
Famously, McFadden said in his draft day press phone call that: “I didn’t really speak to the Cleveland Browns. This was a big surprise to me. I didn’t talk to them much, other than basic questionnaires. But other than that, I didn’t know of their interest in me at all.”
On the opposite side of All-Pro Joe Haden, the Browns currently have a cornerback competition between McFadden, 2011 fifth-rounder Buster Skrine, 2012 seventh-rounder Trevin Wade, last year’s undrafted free agent Jonathan Bademosi, and free agent signings Chris Owens and Kevin Barnes. McFadden was expected to immediately compete for the starting position, as he comes with the highest pedigree background of all the options currently on roster.
With Cleveland Browns rookies scheduled to report to training camp Friday in Berea, three draft picks remain unsigned over constant deliberations.
The main sticking point between the team and No. 6 overall selection DE/OLB Barkevious Mingo appears to be over offset language in his rookie contract. Here’s what The Plain Dealer’s Mary Kay Cabot explained:
Specifically, the Browns want offset language in the deal, and Mingo’s side does not. Offset language addresses a player who is released before his fully-guaranteed four-year contract has expired. With such language, the original team only has to pay the difference between what it owed the player and what he’ll make from a new team.
Mingo has looked to receive a similar deal as former teammate LSU defensive back Morris Claiborne, who was the No. 6 pick in last year’s draft by the Dallas Cowboys. On par with the rookie wage scale instituted in 2011, Claiborne signed for four years and $16.26 million with a fifth-year option.
Why exactly a team and its high-profile rookie are sparring over minute details related to release information appears to be quite peculiar. The Browns also have yet to reach deals with their second-round cornerback Leon McFadden and troubled seventh-round defensive end Armonty Bryant.
The Akron Beacon Journal’s Nate Ulrich wrote that it shouldn’t be a problem for the team to reach a deal with the latter two players, but it will continue to be more complicated with Mingo. Both sides have continued to indicate that Mingo should be signed by the start of official training camp in one week, on July 25.
Only three of the top 10 picks from this past April’s draft have signed with their teams, with none of those signed players owning offset language in their respective contracts. Only one of the top nine players last season had such language as well.
We don’t know if it is anything more than a cameo, but Bernie Kosar tweeted that he’s at FirstEnergy Stadium with Kevin Costner.
At Browns Stadium! Trying to pretend to be an actor with Kevin C! Of course I am in over my head
— Bernie Kosar (@BernieKosarQB) May 28, 2013
I know many fans are sitting on pins and needles hoping that the movie is a respectable sports movie at minimum so that it can do the city and team proud. Getting the essence of the Browns is a very big part of that, so it is at least encouraging that they’d somehow include one of the quintessential Cleveland Browns of the last 30 years.
The movie starring Kevin Costner, Jennifer Garner and featuring Houston Texans running back Arian Foster as a member of the Browns continues to film in and around Cleveland. It has a release date for sometime in 2014 and involves the quest for the number one draft pick.
Rick is running a contest for a free WFNY t-shirt. He will be posting a link of the show on his twitter page @RickWFNY and you need to RT it for a chance to win. We will pick a winner at random. (There is no purchase necessary. There are no guarantees of winning, but we guarantee we will make an attempt to give someone a free t-shirt. Please don’t sue us for trying to do something nice.)
Just how open are the Browns right now in terms of their public face
The Chuck Klosterman article on Grantland
What was the lead time of the trip to Cleveland?
Where is the split in the Browns home building?
Is there a split in the Browns building?
Jimmy Haslam’s trucking company troubles and how it changed Klosterman’s access
Missing the opportunity of having Chuck Klosterman in the room
Grading the front office on the pass rush should be easy
The Browns front office casts a vote against Pat Shurmur by bringing them all back
Brandon Weeden and his ability to get incrementally better
The possibility that Chud and Norv Turner will try to put guys in abilities to achieve
Finding the next Darren Sproles or finding a true change of pace back
Are the Browns going to have a third down back, or a second featured back?
What are Montario Hardesty’s chances of making the Browns?
The Lake Erie Crushers in the independent league
The Frontier League and their 14 team league
- CONTEST WIN T-SHIRT PRIZES PRIZES PRIZES
“My feeling is that we need to present a different picture of this organization. It’s been stale. It has not done well. I don’t think people view the Browns in a positive light. My perception from the outside was that the Browns just weren’t successful. They weren’t energetic or forward-thinking. I’m not afraid of transparency. Most of what we do here — there’s no secret to it.”
On Monday, there was much consternation to be had. Not only had Terry Pluto been the subject of a complete hack job, it was reported that the Cleveland Browns listed their draft sheet not by position or grade, but alphabetically. Debate ranged from incompetence and baseless speculation to blind benefit of the doubt—maybe the Browns had multiple draft boards; the report, however, stated nothing of the sort. The end result was a discussion surrounding how the debates surrounding the unknown could be silenced if the Browns had taken our pro bono advice, an output typically reserved for overpaid consultants and advisory firms.
Cleveland Browns seventh-round draft pick Armonty Bryant was arrested Friday morning in Ada, Oklahoma, and charged with driving under the influence, according to a police report.
The Ada News reports that Bryant was pulled over late Friday night and refused a breathalyzer. The arresting officer reported smelling alcohol on Bryant’s breath and asked him to step out of the vehicle. When asked if he’d had anything to drink, the report said Bryant initially denied it. The officer administered sobriety tests at the scene and said Bryant reportedly had difficulty with several of the steps. Bryant then admitted to having “a few drinks earlier in the evening.”
The officer claimed that, after 10 attempts at administering a breathalyzer, Bryant just “puffed his cheeks and acted like he was blowing into the Intoxilyzer.”
Jail records show Bryant had posted his $500 bail and was checked out of the Justice Center at 10:30 a.m. Friday.
On the third day of the 2013 draft, the Browns drafted Bryant in the seventh round (No. 217 overall) despite his off-field baggage. Bryant was suspended for three games in 2012 after being arrested on the practice field in October due to charges of selling $20 of marijuana twice to an undercover officer. Following his selection, Bryant said he was grateful for the Browns taking a chance on him and vowed to stay out of trouble.
“Now that I’ve gotten that second chance, I feel like I won’t let anyone down,” said Bryant. ”I won’t let myself, the people around me or the Cleveland Browns down. I appreciate them for taking this chance on me.”
An athletic defensive end, Bryant was largely considered a low-risk selection with a high potential reward if he were to stay focused.
“We are aware of the incident and are now in the process of collecting more information,” Browns vice president of media relations Neal Gulkis said in a statement. “We will not have any further comment.”
The draft board used by the Cleveland Browns last weekend was arranged alphabetically, writes Dan Pompei of the National Football post.
Pompei adds that this sort of organization is very unorthodox and can make it difficult to make decisions on the fly. “Front office men around the league were buzzing about the unusual board last week,” writes Pompei.
Also noteworthy is that the Browns did not allow the majority of their scouts in the draft room. While they are not the only team that locks scouts out of the process, this becomes timely given that the team recently decided to revamp it’s entire scouting department following the draft. Director of College Scouting John Spytek was fired last Wednesday, along with two pro scouts, following his unwillingness to take a reduced role with the team. He had two years remaining on his contract. Earlier in the week, Senior National Scout Pat Roberts, hired by former general manager Phil Savage, left after the Browns did not renew his contract.
This past weekend, it was reported that the Browns considered Barkevious Mingo, their selection with the sixth-overall pick, one of the four “blue chip” prospects in the draft. The organization of the team’s draft board is in contrast to the majority of the league which uses a horizontal board by position and a vertical board by grade.
[Related: One Week Removed, More Browns Draft Thoughts]
In his Sunday notes, The Plain Dealer’s Terry Pluto talks about the some of the draft strategy for the Browns that unfolded in the first round. This includes the selection of LSU defensive lineman/linebacker prospect Barkevious Mingo instead of a potential trade down.
“The Browns had four players ranked as “blue-chippers.” I could only come up with three names — Barkevious Mingo and offensive tackles Luke Joeckel and Eric Fisher. It’s possible the fourth was guard Chance Warmack, although I’m sure they were not going to take a guard at No. 6. The main point was Mingo was on the list.
That’s why they rejected an offer from St. Louis to trade down to No. 16 and add a second-round pick. If a blue-chipper remained available, they were not about to make a trade unless it was clearly lopsided in their favor. They didn’t think the offer for the Rams’ 16th, 46th and 222nd picks were enough to pass on Mingo.”
In his junior season at LSU, Mingo amassed 4.5 sacks, 8.5 tackles for loss, and 38 tackles, earning second team All-SEC honors. The Rams, you will recall, made a trade last season prior to the draft with the Washington Redskins that allowed them to select Robert Griffin III at number two overall, moving up from six, in exchange for two future additional first round picks and a second round pick. The Browns were said to be in on that trade action as well.
One week removed from the fun and buildup of the NFL Draft, and what do we know? Well, not much. We know the Browns are bringing Barkevious Mingo, Leon McFadden, Jamoris Slaughter, Garrett Gilkey, and Armonty Bryant, along with a bunch of undrafted free agents into the fold with a shot at making the team. We know the team has 9 picks next year, including 6 in the first four rounds. We know there are still holes on this team. Other than that, it’s a lot of guesswork, and listed below, is some of mine. [Read more...]
The Cleveland Browns will once again just miss out on a quarterback and select a skill player in the 2014 NFL Draft, says Sports Illustrated’s Chris Burke.
In an entirely-too-early mock draft posted at SI.com, Burke has the Browns selecting fourth, representing a finish of roughly three or four wins in 2013. This said, the Orange and Brown are presently forecasted to miss out on the two quarterbacks slated to lead the pack at this time next year, Louisville’s Teddy Bridgewater and Clemson’s Taj Boyd. Instead, they address the wide receiver position with USC’s Marqise Lee.
“Lee is just 6-feet tall, so we’re not talking about a Calvin Johnson-type that’s going to win jump balls consistently,” writes Burke. “What Lee will do, though, is get open and make plays. He caught a whopping 118 passes last season for 1,721 yards and 14 touchdowns. You’re looking at a Heisman frontrunner for 2013 and a player that could dramatically improve an NFL offense.”
If the Browns do finish among the five worst teams in the NFL, it will undoubtedly be due to poor play or a disastrous injury suffered by quarterback Brandon Weeden. Accumulating a slew of picks in 2013, it is widely expected that the Browns will attempt to trade up in the instance they are in need of a passer come next spring. If Boyd’s name rings a bell, it is because the Clemson star was slated to attend Ohio State but opted to go south once it appeared he would have to wait for Terrelle Pryor to finish his tenure with the team.
In 2012, with sure-fire quarterbacks Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III going first and second, respectively, the Browns picked third and selected running back Trent Richardson. Acquiring a third- and fourth-round selection this past weekend, the Browns will head into the 2014 NFL Draft with nine selections at their disposal.
Another NFL Draft in the books. With our aversion to “grades” well documented, we will address 10 key points with regard to the 2013 edition, specific to the Cleveland Browns. Our individual takes can be found after the jump. We invite you to participate, just as many of you did one year ago. Let’s get into it…
1. Just like last year, we’ll start it off here: On a scale of 1-to-10, what is your perception of the Browns’ 2013 draft?