Why the Cleveland Browns Should Cut Hank Poteat

Richard BairdContributor IINovember 23, 2009

DENVER - SEPTEMBER 20:  Wide reciever Brandon Stokley #14 of the Denver Broncos makes a 47 yard reception and is tackled by Hank Poteat #23 of the Cleveland Browns during NFL action at Invesco Field at Mile High on September 20, 2009 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Imagine this scenario...

It's third and six and you are playing the Cleveland Browns.  You look at the wide receiver matchups to get an early read on who might be open.  You see your slot/possession receiver lined up against the Browns nickel cornerback.  That cornerback in Hank Poteat.  Bingo!  Found your mismatch!

All season long, Hank Poteat has been the target of choice on important plays.  Sunday's pass interference against the Lions to cost us the game was just the latest and most egregious in a whole series of bad plays by the veteran.  Of all the players that Mangini brought from the Jets, none has been as worthless as Hank Poteat.  Even Brett Ratliff, who hasn't played, has made a bigger contribution by not being on the field.

It's time to cut ties with Poteat.  There is a reason he's been on several different teams.  He has been released by Pittsburgh, Carolina, Tampa Bay, New England, and the Jets.  With the dearth of cornerback talent in the league, teams don't let players that are worth anything go that many times.  I would rather see Coye Francies play and get experience than watch Hank Poteat get overmatched again and again.

Please, whoever the new GM will be, do the Browns a favor and go get a cornerback!  Draft a cornerback, sign a cornerback, get a cornerback out of the UFL, do something, because this defense isn't going to stop anybody until there is a credible cornerback who can cover and tackle across from Eric Wright.