Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Gary Baxter

Gary Baxter has been getting accustomed to his new team, new uniform, and new contract. After playing with the Baltimore Ravens for some years, coach Romeo Crennel altered Baxter’s views of the next coming years.

Baxter has spent his first four years of his NFL career with the Ravens. He was planning to stay with the Ravens after becoming a free agent, but with the loss of cornerback Anthony Henry, the Browns made him an offer he couldn’t refuse.

Now Baxter has signed a six-year contract with the Browns. It’s time for him to get used to wearing orange.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Team Report:

- from FOXSports.com

The braintrust has taken pains to bring alive Cleveland as a place with tradition rather than just a place to work, hoping to bridge the disconnection between players and fans. Icon Jim Brown, who played on the city's last major pro sports league title team in 1964, now has an office in the team complex. One of his jobs will be to shape player attitudes. Paul Warfield, another Hall of Famer from the Browns' 1964 title team, is helping with scouting. The former wideout played a role in endorsing WR Braylon Edwards as the No. 3 overall draft pick. Bob Golic, a colorful nose tackle on two AFC finalist teams in the 1980s, has been hired to juice up some of the club's TV productions, including preseason games. Brown in particular commands a lot of locker room respect. . . .

QB Trent Dilfer set a mature tone of leadership as the team headed for spring practice. Dilfer was prepared to mentor a quarterback drafted in the first round, even if that QB would have been a threat to his starting job. Likewise, he has taken third-round pick Charlie Frye under his wing. In some situations, Frye wouldn't have a shot at a starting job until his third pro season. Ironically, Dilfer's willingness to show the ropes could hasten Frye's growth and make him a candidate to start in 2006. Dilfer's most important job, though, isn't baby-sitting Frye. It's bonding with Edwards, and helping to reveal who the other starting wideout should be.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Peter Boulware

Linebacker Peter Boulware, who is currently on free agent status, has been showing interest in starting with the Browns franchise. Just entering free agent status two weeks ago, Boulware has been playing the last four years with the Baltimore Ravens. Ex-Raven cornerback Gary Baxter joined the Browns at the end of March and is hoping his former teammate will join on as well.

“I think he’s looking for a place where can have an impact on the team, number one, and number two, a place that he sees a tangible role. I think he saw that his role was going to change in Baltimore.”
- Browns General Manager Phil Savage

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Matt Stewart

Matt Stewart, formerly a linebacker for the Atlanta Falcons, has joined the Cleveland Browns. With the current plans of Romeo Crennel to change the defensive scheme from a 4-3 to a 3-4, Stewart comes prepared. He has the versatility to go to any of the four defensive positions. This is also a return home for Stewart, who originates from Cleveland.

“Matt was somebody that we identified early on in the free agent process as someone we would like to have. He can play either the outside or the inside linebacker position, which will provide us with some versatility as we transition into the 3-4.”
- Browns Senior Vice President and General Manager Phil Savage

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

HONING THEIR GAMES:

- from FOXSports.com

It's not clear whether the Browns were merely trying to light a fire when they announced 2002 first-round pick William Green could be had in a trade. It's clear a fire was lit. Rather than moping about a plight born of his own missteps, Green has responded with a determined, upbeat attitude. Advised to take film-watching more seriously, he has spent more hours in front of a screen than in his first three Cleveland springs combined. In the past, Green gave lip service to studying defenses, but he seems to understand now that he did far too little in this area. Having seen poor results from relying on instinct, Green is taking a new look at how to use blockers scientifically, in addition to by feel. Green's confidence is bolstered by having a veteran right guard, Cosey Coleman, in front of him. Green needs to hit the hole with more authority than he has, and his new attention to detail should help. Beyond that, Green seems to have his off-field issues in order.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Ben Miller

After a season-ending ankle injury, Ben Miller is returning to his Browns. Not only has Miller been out last year, he has been out since 2002. Miller has military service through 2 years between 2002 and 2004. After returning, Miller followed suit with his injury.

Miller has currently been participating as a tight end for the Hamburg Sea Devils in NFL Europe. This gives him a good chance to reinstate his previously untapped skills for the last three years.

“That’s what great about football, is competing against someone else. This is giving me the opportunity to experience that again before coming back this fall (in Browns training camp). There was quite a bit of rust. I hadn’t played in three years. But I’ve knocked that off by now and I’ll be able to finish the season strong.”
- Ben Miller

Friday, May 06, 2005

2nd Pick

- from ESPN.com

Pool played in 12 games (mostly on special teams) as a true freshman in 2002. He started 12-of-14 games in 2003 at FS and finished with 68 total tackles, seven interceptions, six pass breakups and nine tackles for loss. As a junior in 2004, Pool led the Sooners with 92 tackles and finished with two interceptions, nine passes broken up and five tackles for loss. Pool lacks elite man-to-man coverage skills and he isn't a huge hitter versus the run. He will need time to develop his technique and he also needs to take fewer chances as a last line of defense. However, he has good speed and athletic ability, as well as natural football instincts instincts. He's a playmaker that is always around the ball  versus the run and the pass. He isn't afraid to fill hard versus the run and he has developed into a ballhawk ...

Monday, May 02, 2005

Crennel and Minicamp

The Cleveland Browns have commenced their first rookie minicamp. This not only is getting all of the new players associated with the team, but also getting Crennel on terms with being head coach.

Romeo Crennel is starting his head coach gig with the Browns. Even though he has about 35 years of football experience, this is the first time he has been placed as head coach.

All in all, this is a very exciting thing for the Browns. With a new coach always come new strategy and the possibility of improvement. Crennel has an impressive resume of football experience and should be a helpful asset.