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Post-Expansion Browns 'All Star' Line-Up


I have been thinking a lot recently about the history of the expansion Browns and the players we have seen come and go in that period of time. I thought it would be fun (or masochistic) to put together rosters of the best players we've had and see how our line ups match up. (Sorry if this drags out bad memories, but that's what being a Browns fan is all about.)

The idea is to put the best team on the field drawing from the players that have donned a Browns uniform since 1999. You can put the team together through any criteria you want, ie. best single seasons, most consistent, etc. I just thought it would be fun to see how people build their teams. If you need to jog your memory, here are the starting line-ups of previous seasons.

Here is who I would put out on the field:

Offense:

QB - Tim Couch

RB -Trent Richardson (Projecting that he will be the best RB we've had)

WR1 - Braylon Edwards

WR2 - Kevin Johnson

WR3 - Antonio Bryant

TE - Kellen Winslow

LT - Joe Thomas

LG - Eric Steinbach

C - Alex Mack

RG - Ross Verba/Shaun O'Hara

RT - Ryan Tucker

On offense, I went with Couch as the QB. I think he's been the most complete QB we have had since coming back. Luckily for him, he gets to play behind a stellar line with stud Joe Thomas on the left and very much missed Ryan Tucker on the right. I couldn't decide on a right guard and decided that it should be one of O'Hara or Verba, I just can't remember how they looked with us all those years ago. Maybe Orlando Brown would be the RT with Tucker sliding inside to RG.

For RB, I chose Richardson as he projects to be the most complete back we've had since expansion. If you wanted a guy who has played for us before, I'd toss it up between Jamal Lewis and Peyton Hillis (or flash in the pans Jerome Harrison and Lee Suggs :D ). For the WRs, I chose 3 guys who I think can get open and make plays. These 3 receivers also happen to be the only WRs since 1999 to have 1000 yard receiving seasons with the Browns. Winslow wins as the most dynamic TE we have had, and who I think was going to be the most talented Browns player we have had since coming back.

Defense:

DE - Kenard Lang

DT - Shaun Rogers

DT - Ahtyba Rubin

DE - Jabaal Sheard

OLB -D'Qwell Jackson

ILB - Earl Holmes

OLB - Jamir Miller

CB - Joe Haden

FS - Earl Little

SS - Robert Griffith

CB - Leigh Bodden

For the defense, I decided to go with a 4-3 because I don't have any good memories from the 3-4. Even though Kamerion Wimbley's 26.5 total sacks are the most we have had from a single player since 1999, I decided to leave him off the team in favor of Kenard Lang and Jabaal Sheard, who I think fit better in a 4-3 and seem to be more savvy in finding ways to get to the QB. It was interesting to see the Browns pass rusher history. We've been pretty bad in that regard, check it out.

Inside, I've got Shaun Rogers, who has been the most dynamic defensive lineman we have had since the return. Across from Rogers I have Ahtyba Rubin, a home grown player who is improving year in and year out, a rarity for us. Honorable mention to Orpheus Roye for his solid play for a number of seasons. For the linebackers, I put the solid D'Qwell Jackson outside opposite Jamir Miller, another guy who can rush the passer, with thumper Earl Holmes in the middle. Apologies to Andra Davis, Browns 5th all time in tackles. Dishonorable mention to Chaun Thompson.

The secondary was pretty tricky. At CB, I felt Joe Haden is a lock for his superb play so far in his young career. Opposite him, I landed on Leigh Bodden, edging out Daylon McCutcheon and Anthony Henry. Griffith is my SS, probably one of my favorite Browns since the expansion. He was a great tackler and leader for the defense, and during his days with us he also had Earl Little start opposite him at FS. I chose Little for having the most INTs for the Browns since 1999 with 18. (Also considered: Sean Jones, TJ Ward, Bryan Russel).

Special teams:

K - Phil Dawson

P - Dave Zastudil

KR - Josh Cribbs

PR - Dennis Northcutt

Obviously Phil Dawson is the choice at kicker, unless anyone became seriously infatuated with Billy Cundiff. Punter is pretty much a toss up. I didn't really like Gardocki, so Hodges wins by virtue of the most memorable play from a Browns punter with his fake punt dash against the Saints. One of my favorite plays in recent memory. At kick returner, you gotta go with Josh Cribbs, but I chose Northcutt as a punt returner.

What do you guys think? What does your team look like?

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