Well, it's safe to assume that Cleveland Browns' head coach Romeo Crennel won't be in Cleveland. After a 10-6 record in 2007, his current 4-11 record, combined with 6-10 and 4-12 records in his first two seasons, have put his job in jeopardy. This is a team that was favored to make the playoffs; now, it's in a rebuilding phase. What can be done?
Step 1: Revisit the Past
Marty Schottenheimer coached the Browns from 1984 to 1988, amassing a 44-27 record. A young linebacker named Bill Cowher played for the Browns two years before the Schottenheimer era. Both are familiar with the Browns and the division, especially Cowher, who coached AFC North rival Pittsburgh Steelers to a world championship in 2005. Cowher would have an advantage over Crennel, who has never defeated the Steelers in his four seasons as head coach.
Both Cowher and Schottenheimer should be considered front runners to replace Romeo Crennel. Crennel is a very passive coach that does not take risks. With very little time left on the clock and down by a touchdown to the Pittsburgh Steelers, he opted for a field goal
Step 2: Draft from Home
Three Ohio State players, the halfback Chris "Beanie" Wells, outside linebacker Marcus Freeman, and cornerback Malcolm Jenkins, are eligible for the draft. All would fill holes the Browns needed. The Browns are a guaranteed top 10 draft pick, meaning that both Wells and Jenkins should be available wherever they pick, which is somewhere from six to 10.
Malcolm Jenkins could help fix their faulty pass defense, but Jamal Lewis is a shell of his former self and Wells is a well-rounded runner, who has speed and the strength to be the featured back. Freeman is projected somewhere around the second to third round, and is a well-rounded linebacker who can both get to the quarterback, something the Browns have had trouble doing this season, and can stop the run.
Step 3: Don't Hold Grudges
Alright, that subheading was kind of reaching for something clever, but it's mainly referring to Terrell Suggs, the free agent defensive end from divisional rival Baltimore. He is a free agent I believe they should sign. But, there are plenty of other free agents who could fix the issues.
Both Derrick Ward and Brandon Jacobs, two New York Giants running backs, are free agents and could come in and make a difference. San Diego speedster Darren Sproles could come in and compliment any rookie they might draft. Julius Peppers and Terrell Suggs are two elite pass-rushing prospects.
Albert Haynesworth is also a free agent, but the Browns have already found their powerful, 3-4 nose tackle in Shaun Rogers. If a new coach wants to implement a 4-3, however, Haynesworth and Rogers would be a fantastic duo up the middle and would, without a doubt, top the Williams Wall in Minnesota.
Step 4: Change Your Health Care
Countless Browns have been contracted with a staph infection over the past few years. Brady Quinn, Derek Anderson, Ken Dorsey, and Bruce Gradkowski will all have started at least one game for Cleveland at season's end. 13 Browns are currently on Injured Reserve. See a trend?
This is a franchise in disarray, but we said the same things about the Dolphins, who fell from 6-10 to 1-15, but have risen up to 10-5. Remember the 7-9 Falcons that fell to 4-12? Yeah, they're 10-5 right now also. Who knows? Maybe next year, we'll be talking about the Browns just the same way.