Eric Mangini has been getting ripped, and I’m on the fence about him. I am a strong believer in giving a head coach a couple of years to install players and a system that works for them (i.e. scUM’s Rich Rodriguez). I want to look at the offseason through today before I make my decision about Mangini. Then I will state some things I would like to see Mangini do.
Draft- When Mangini took a hold of the team I believe the Browns only had 4 draft picks in the draft. He traded Kellen Winslow to get us a fifth pick in the draft (2nd Round), then he turned our 1st round pick (5th overall) into 4 picks and 3 players. It is too early to determine a grade of the players drafted, but I like the moves overall. I think the only players we may have missed out on were (that we had a chance to get with the picks we had, without over drafting them), Percy Harvin and Michael Oher, who were drafted the 2 picks after we drafted Alex Mack. But Mangini may know what he is doing with Centers, in his first year with the Jets, he drafted Nick Mangold (2008 Pro Bowler) in a similar position.
Season- The first thing I looked at for this season was our opponents. If you take away their results versus the Browns, our opponents are 26-13. I haven’t gone through other schedules but I would be surprised if there was another team out there who have faced a similar schedule. Next I would look at the offense, and what can I say about it besides it is bad. Now the defense is a different story. Even though we are dead last in total defense, I don’t get the same sense of ineptitude as I do with the offense. I think that some of the defensive struggles can be attributed to the offense not staying on the field and turning the ball over. The Browns are tied for the 2nd most turnovers at 18, and 3rd from last in time of possession. Again this can be attributed to the quality of opponents we are playing, but if the offense can give the defense 1 less short field and hold on to the ball for a couple more plays to give the defense more field to work with. Then our defenses true colors might start showing. But all that said about the defense, we still need a better secondary. Ben Roethlisberger and Aaron Rodgers had a field day against us the past two weeks.
Rest of Season- This season was lost a while ago so for the rest of the season, especially in our easier second half, I would like to see 1 major thing and I can’t believe I am about to say this. Even though I have supported starting Derek Anderson over Brady Quinn (I’m not a big fan of Quinn), I would like to see Brady Quinn start for the rest of the season after the bye week. The reasons I would accept Anderson starting after the bye week are ;(1) Anderson lights it up against the Bears this week, (2) Mangini wants to give Quinn a chance to get off on the right foot and have him start against Detroit.
Offseason- First thing first , Mangini should take the money he saved by benching Quinn, and either cut a Derek Anderson or pay a team to take him off our hands. If they can get any kind of pick out of the D.A., that would be a bonus. Then I want Mangini to declare what the identity of the team will be. Are we going to try and be an offense first team like the Cardinals or a defense first team like old Ravens. Then once he declares that, he goes and gets players for the opposite side in free agency, and builds the side he chose out of the draft.