It's that time of year when we all sit down, gather up the papers and the internets, and start prognosticating. Think this is the year? Think we may never win again? Think we'd be better off with a roster comprised entirely of fullbacks? Here's your chance to get that down in ink. Just as a template, I'll be picking final record, pleasant surprise and crushing disappointment.
Final Record: 6-10.
Right after I fearlessly predicted (last night) that we would suck, I decided to actually look at the schedule. The schedule, it just so happens, is really soft. I think Pittsburgh beats us twice, we split with Baltimore, and we sweep the Bengals. That leaves us 3-3 in division, which isn't awful. I think we can beat Buffalo, Detroit, and Kansas City on the road. Oakland is absolutely awful and should be a win in Cleveland. If you are paying very close attention, you'll notice that is seven wins, where I previously stated six. I'm assuming that, somewhere along the line, we'll lose a game we should, or could, win. I fear Kansas City and would be disgusted were it Cincinnati.
Pleasant Surprise: Mike Furrey.
I'll confess, I really expected nothing out of Furrey coming into training camp. For starters, he is associated with Detroit, not a lovely place anyway and certainly not if you played for the worst team in football history. Secondly, he was hurt and missed a significant amount of time last year. Now, after the preseason, Marla Ridenour has christened him "First Down" Furrey. While I hate contrived and prosaic nicknames, I think Furrey has a chance to play something of a Brian Brennan role in this offense.
Crushing Disappointment: Losing to Denver, again.
I hate Denver. I don't that can be said enough. I loathe Denver. My first memories of Browns football are being surrounded by Broncos fans for The Drive and The Fumble. Denver has become a symbol of everything that is wrong in this world to me. Sadly, I just don't see us going there and beating them. And that makes me feel like crying, again.
I think this Browns team is better than most of the mainstream media thinks it is. That said, I don't think it is good. There are too many questions at too many important positions for this team to actually make a push for anything.
I'm on record (lots of records, really) as saying I prefer Derek Anderson to Brady Quinn. With that out there, allow me to posit that I think Quinn can be a very good quarterback in this system. It seems like our offensive schemes are more geared to Quinn's skill set (accuracy, good reads) than Anderson's (throwing the ball very hard, regardless of circumstance) anyway.
Jamal Lewis may want all of us to think he's saving something for the regular season, but I'm not buying. He looks slow in preseason games, people who know say he looks slow in camp. That's not the sign of a back that is going to do anything this year. 1,100 yards at 3.2 YPC isn't going to do it for us. I think RB is a position of weakness on this team and it's going to take more than James Davis to fix that. Jerome Harrison is a rooster illusion at this point.
I'm excited with the things being done here. I wasn't a big Romeo fan near the end (who was?) and I think Mangini is taking the the right. I don't love the completely pointless secrecy around the starting QB, but it's his team, not mine.
What do you think the Browns record will be?
10-6 or better (21 votes)
9-7 (21 votes)
8-8 (37 votes)
7-9 (55 votes)
6-10 (33 votes)
5-11 (25 votes)
4-12 or worse (32 votes)
224 total votes