As many of you know already, Pro Football Talk released their preseason power rankings the other day, and the Cleveland Browns were ranked as lucky No. 32. Tony Grossi was interviewed by Mike Florio Tuesday on PFT Live, and Grossi had the opportunity to defend the Browns. Is that what he ended up doing? Check out the 16 minute interview below, or the cliff notes version after the jump.
Florio told Grossi that there was a panel of five people, including himself, who voted on the rankings. However, he was unable to disclose where he ranked the Browns. Did the guy sign a non-disclosure act or something? I guess the goal is to maintain that the site votes in unity rather than saying certain writers play favorites, but it really does not seem like a big deal.
Grossi understood why the Browns would be in the discussion, and that being ranked something like 28th isn't exactly a consolation prize. At the very least, he thinks teams like Jacksonville and Indianapolis should be ranked lower than Cleveland. When asked about a win total, Grossi thought the Browns could win seven games, but that the key game is the opener against the Philadelphia Eagles.
For the quarterback situation, Weeden's age came into question as Florio wondered if Cleveland made a mistake. Grossi shot down concerns over Weeden's age, saying that he has looked fine in camp and is actually underated in terms of talent thanks to the bias against his age. Grossi agreed with Florio's take from a few weeks ago that the Browns should try to move Colt McCoy. His reasons were that Seneca Wallace is already the established backup and that it'll just be plain awkward to have McCoy around in the locker room.
I thought Florio brought up an unusual concern, and that was, "what if Trent Richardson gets injured, doesn't everything go to hell?" I don't understand why that would be a specific concern for the Browns. Are they going up and down every other team in the league and wondering what they will do if their starting running back goes down, or if their top draft pick goes down? Things happen, but it's not like the Browns took an injury-riddled Montario Hardesty in that spot. Grossi acknowledged that if the backups stay healthy, he thinks Cleveland's depth at the position is better than it has been.
Lastly, Florio seemed to underestimate the strength of the Browns' offensive line. He pointed out the success of Joe Thomas and Alex Mack, but wondered if the other three positions on the line were a concern. Grossi felt the team was in pretty good shape all-around on the line and had a great foundation for the future. Florio closed the interview by suggesting that maybe the Browns aren't the worst-ranked team in the league after all.