Hope Springs Eternal
Once again the Cleveland Browns are starting a new era. New President, New GM and a coach with a new lease on life that is a hold over from the previous regime.
We have heard this all before.
False promises of how we will do it right this time.
Some members of the media dubbing a season with a nickname, that at the time seemed to fit. 2007 was aptly named the “Season of Dreams”. Only to be let down, the following year.
Our Generation grew up with tales of Jim Brown, Leroy Kelly and the great players of our father’s era.
We saw glimpses of greatness with Bernie Kosar, Ernest Byner, Ozzie Newsome and even Eric Metcalf.
I do not want my child growing up with tales of Brady Quinn and Tim Couch to tell my future Grandchildren.
So what do we do as Browns fans moving forward?
We must trust in Mike Holmgen.
He is the first real “Football” guy in charge of the Browns in decades. We were fooled three times before with organizational changes. Insert Carmen Policy, Butch Davis and Phil Savage. Let us hope that we are not tricked a 4th time….
Holmgren has a resume that leads us toward thoughts of greatness.
It reads like this:
Quarterbacks Coach for Joe Montana and Steve Young with the San Francisco 49ers.
Quarterbacks Coach and Offensive Coordinator for Steve Young at BYU.
Head Coach of Brett Farve in Green Bay.
Head Coach of Matt Hasselback in Seattle.
NFL Coaches who have been developed under the Holmgren Coaching Tree:
17 years as head NFL Coach: 8 times he won his division
5 times he finished 2nd in his division
13 Career playoff wins
2 Super Bowl appearances as Head Coach (GB and Sea)
2 Super Bowl appearances as Asst. Coach (SF)
1 National Championship as Asst Coach in College (BYU)
Mike Holmgren and John Madden are the only Coaches who have coached teams to at least one playoff win for five consecutive seasons.
Holmgren is also apart of another exclusive club: The Requirements are simple…. Take two different franchises to a Super Bowl.
So what does all of this mean? Absolutely Nothing.
Except for hope of a new season.
Hope that this season Sundays are not as dreary as the weather.
So why do we have hope that this team will be any different from previous disappointments?
Reasons for hope in 2010:
- The best offensive line that the Browns have had in 11 years, continues growing. Insert the road grading mauler that is strongman Shawn Lauvao
- Joshua Cribbs -The best player in the league that does not have a position staying healthy.
- A front office that for once identified the problem spots on the roster during the time leading up to free agency and the draft. (Secondary and Linebackers)
- A front office that actually capitalized in free agency, trades and the draft on the identified deficiencies. (Sheldon Brown, Joe Haden, Larry Asante, TJ Ward, Chris Gocong and Scot Fujita to name a few)
- A running game that behind our good offensive line, should be able to make strides in controlling the clock and tempo of the game. (Jerome Harrison and Co.)
- A running game that should be good enough to help keep our defense off the field. (Jerome Harrison and Co. again)
- Athyba Rubin, a late round draft Gem. (Thank You Phil Savage)
- Joe Thomas and Alex Mack
- Our Special Teams Unit
- Mike Holmgren / Tom Heckert
Reasons I am concerned for 2010:
- Pittsburgh, Baltimore, Cincinnati, New Orleans, New England and the New York Jets combining for 9 games this year in a season when we are playing a last place schedule.
- Possibility / Probability of 3 Rookies seeing significant time in the secondary.
- Joshua Cribbs can only play one position at a time
- Mohammed Massaquoi and Brian Robiskie
- Jake Delhomme
So as we creep towards the 2010 season let me say that I HOPE we show growth and development at all of the key spots in our organization.
Let me just say that I have a Butch Davis style “Gut Feeling” that we might, possibly just maybe have the ship pointed in the direction.
Prediction for 2010 record: To early to tell….
My Star Wars themed title for the 2010 Cleveland Browns Season:
Cleveland Browns IV: A New Hope