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Sunday, September 25, 2016

Foreboding Joy - Browns v. Dolphins

He looks like a really nice guy. Good luck today, Cody! Seriously. 

Today is one of those games that I am already regretting spending the time to watch. I just don't see much of a way for the Browns to win this one. With such a young team and so little depth, the Browns simply can't weather an injury storm like the one that has befallen them over the past two weeks.
Starting QB, Back-up QB, Starting DE, Starting DB (questionable), Starting K, Starting WR, Starting C, Starting S. I'm not even sure I've mentioned everyone...

So the logical question is: if a young healthy Browns team can't beat Philly, and a young sort of healthy Browns team can't beat Baltimore, how on earth is a young injury riddled Browns team supposed to beat Miami? Don't sell Miami short here. They are also 0-2, but they have played two of the top teams in the NFL (I'm disregarding your "the Seahawks suck this year; they can't score." comments right now, as you're thinking them. Isn't that amazing, you didn't even know I was thinking about you. Wait. Forget that. Keep reading.) in the Seattle Seahawks and the New England Patriots.

But this is where the being a Browns fan thing rears its ugly head. I still have this glimmer of hope. Everything presented to us, all the facts, all the pundits, all logical thinking would tell you that there is no way the Browns can win this game. But, I still can't wait for kick-off. I'm secretly hoping that Cody Kessler is as good a quarterback as he seems to be a teammate and hard worker.

Hopefully, John Greco will be an upgrade over Cam Erving as he goes against Ndamukong Suh at center... I can't even continue down this line of reasoning; it's making me sad. But, I'm still excited! What is that? Why have we been chosen for this?

My misplaced excitement and hope aside, something interesting to watch today will be how Joe Thomas handles Mario Williams. There have been many in the past few years that have given Thomas a hard time, citing declining skills, and riding out his all-pro rep while not playing at an all-pro level. To be fair, there are as many, maybe more, who feel he deserves every bit of praise he gets. So today will be a great test for the "future Hall of Famer" against a possible future HOFer.

Another interesting aspect of this game will be how Hugh Jackson fashions the offense for Cody Kessler. By all accounts we might see some interesting formations and play calls today.

So, in the end, I will gather the family into the car and drive down to our local sports bar and eat lunch as we watch the Browns game unfold in real-time. While I'm afraid that I've become one of Pavlov's dogs as I dutifully sit myself in front of the TV for four hours each Sunday, I'm also just hungry. So in this case, I salivate for a win, or for another quarter like the first quarter against the Raven's last week. Man, that was fun! And then it wasn't. But here I am, hearing the bell and returning to the dog bowl. (Wow, that metaphor ended nicely.)

Go Browns.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Browns place Robert Griffin III on injured reserve

We're Back!

And so it begins again. Our last post was seven years ago, almost to the day. After the first game of the Hue Jackson Era, we've decided to get the band back together and vent, scheme, seek redemption, and have some fun. In the meantime, we've all started families and gotten old, so this blog will feature a variety of stories, mostly Browns related, but also political, etc. The idea is to use MUTM as a mostly Browns, but a general posting board for stuff we like and think is interesting. That's it. No pretence.

Below is the email I sent this past Sunday that got this ball rolling...


I'm sitting in a bar on Grand Cayman watching this debacle. While I never expected dominance, let alone a win, this has been tough. Usually it's week six or seven when I begin the question the prudence of dedicating four hours a week to this team, but after this, on week It's going to be a long season. (How many times have we heard that?)

I'm not even sure why I'm writing all of you, other than it's (especially) lonely being a Browns fan in a foreign country.

The crazy part is that I like what they're doing. Go young. Let people play. Draft well. Suck for a bit. But man, sucking blows!

Part of me wants to start Metcalf up the Middle again as a live blog during games. We could all contribute. It'd be hilarious. 

Anyway, off to do some home improvements followed by dinner on the beach. 

Peace out, dudes, and I hope you all had a good weekend. Hug your children, and tell them it will get better. 

In Hugh/Sashi we trust?


Ps - I just saw an old fat dude roll by wearing a Charlie Frye Jersey. Going to talk to him now...

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

In Defense (Sort of) of Eric Mangini

So everybody is jumping up and down on Eric Mangini this week. Certainly, that is to be expected given last week's non-performance in Baltimore. The team was not adequately prepared and did not execute in any phase of the game...ultimately that responsibility falls upon the head coach. However, the (utterly predictable) calls for his job by the unwashed masses and Joe Posnanski's inflammatory for the sake of being inflammatory article are utterly ridiculous.

Don't buy into the hyperbole of what the no-talent hacks like Posnanski, Tony Grossi and other members of the media (who admittedly dislike Mangini because he makes their job harder) have to say.

As an example, let's examine Posnanski's claims about why Eric Mangini was a bad hire:

1. Mangini had just been fired in New York, where he had done a terrible job. He had a losing record. His team had collapsed down the stretch, he had alienated his players, he was a pain in the neck to deal with. Point is: He'd already PROVEN how much damage he could do as a coach.

Did Manging do a terrible job in New York? Taking over a 4-12 team, he was 10-6 in his first season, and brought the Jets to the playoffs. After an admittedly bad season in 2007, he had the Jets off to an 8-3 start last year before Favre's injury and ineffectiveness resulted in a 9-7 finish. That is 23-25 in three seasons. I'm not arguing that he did a fantastic job, but a nearly .500 record over three seasons should hardly be called terrible. (also notice how one of Posnaski points is that "he was a pain in the neck to deal with"...again, Mangini does make media members jobs more difficult and they hate him for it...I, for one, couldn't care less).

2. He came right out of the school of Bill Belichick ... and that didn't work THE FIRST TIME in Cleveland. It seems to me that Cleveland is a working-class town and Browns fans want a working-class coach -- not some pompous know-it-all who doesn't feel like he should have to explain to the commoners what he's doing.

The reason Bill Belichick didn't work in Cleveland is because he didn't win enough. Knowing everything you know about Bill Belichick, would you have taken him as the Browns coach in 1999 or even now? I sure would. It is about winning. Belichick, in his second incarnation, became one of the best coaches of all time, in part certainly due to learning from mistakes he made in his first go around as head coach. Could something similar happen with Mangini? Maybe. I can only speak for myself, and I don't know what "working-class" means, but I don't care how much of a prick the Browns coach is as long as they win!

3. What had he ever done to convince anyone he could be a head coach in the first place? Why, because he was a defensive coordinator for the Patriots under Belichick for one season? The Browns had JUST HIRED Romeo Crennel, who was ALSO defensive coordinator under Belichick. Attention Cleveland Browns owners, here's a good hint: BILL BELICHICK IS HIS OWN DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR.

Despite Mangini's expanding girth, comparing he and Romeo is comparing apples and oranges....ok, milky way and cake. Romeo was lauded as a great hire because he had "paid his dues" as an assistant and he had convinced people that he was qualified to be a head coach. And he was a bust! So there is no tried and true way to convince someone that you are qualified to be a head coach. Good head coaches and bad head coaches come from all organizations and all experience levels. And you have no idea what was said in Mangini's interview to convince Woody Johnson and then Randy Lerner that he was qualified to be a head coach, but the bottom line is that the interview likely had much more to do with his hire than his resume.

4. Basically the first thing Mangini did -- first thing -- was have them tear down a mural of great Cleveland Browns players on the wall in the Browns offices. Now, there are differing opinions about what really happened, whose fault it really was, does it all matter, etc. You know what? The Cleveland Browns have never been to a Super Bowl. Never. Not one. But Browns fans still have a whole lot of pride. Browns fans grow up on a glorious history. If you allow something stupid like that to happen on your watch ... just a horrendous hire.

This is laughable and totally irresponsible reporting. Mangini, like almost any new coach, did some rearranging of the locker room and the facility. The mural that Posnanski refers to was actually moved to a much more prominent place in the facility (why the failure to mention that one, Joe?). The Browns organization has reached out to its alumni. Do you see Paul Warfield and Jim Brown on the bench every game? This is a totally salacious and false argument and is only used to drum up a dramatic conclusion.

So there you have it my friends. I'm not saying that Eric Mangini will end up being a great coach for the Browns. There are clearly a lot of holes in the ship. Some of the early season failings are due truly to a lack of NFL talent, while some absolutely fall on the coaching staff and the head coach in particular. But it is important to note that Posnanski and other members of the media already dislike Mangini and are eager to see him fail. But we Browns fans are smarter than that. Let's see how the season continues to play out and what kind of progress the team makes before rushing to judgment. I know last week was dark, but keep your heads up and keeping cheering on Sundays.

Top Dawg

Thursday, August 27, 2009


You heard it here first: The Vikings won't make the playoffs. I never bought it when Favre signed and all the sudden these guys could win it all. Total BS. Just throwin' it out there...

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Ryan, Kevin, and Mark’s 2009 Draft Report

Welcome, Browns fans, to the 2009 edition of the Draft Report. 2008 was supposed to
be our Christmas morning. Perhaps the most eagerly anticipated Browns season since
the return in 1999, we thought everything was lined up for the Browns to contend for the
division and conference championship. A strong offense would only get stronger with
the addition of Donte Stallworth, and 5 prime time games portended good things for the
orange and brown.

Well, you know how it went. We came downstairs on Christmas morning to find that the
Grinch had taken all of our presents and Romeo ate the Who Roast Beast. Donte’
Stallworth proved to be more fra-geel-lay than an Italian leg lamp and the Browns were
the worst thing on primetime since the first season of “Joey”. Exit Romeo and Phil, enter
the Mangenius.

So here we are again with another new coach telling us that it will take time to build and
that we have to be patient. We’re now working on our fourth “three year plan” in the last
ten years, if anyone was keeping count. I don’t know if it is because it is spring and
anything is possible, or because LeBron has changed us, or just because of all of this
cough syrup(translated Tequila) we’ve been drinking, but we remain optimistic.

Due to high demand fro the publication, high expectations, and more
importantly…laziness, Ryan and Kevin have hired an intern to contribute to this years
draft report. We are happy to welcome a young man out of Pepper Pike, Ohio who is
the long time webmaster and musical director of the Draft Report, former lead singer of
Samson, and the proprietor of (where you can
find this year’s Report online), Mark brings a new voice (and hopefully some new jokes)
to the table. Welcome Mark. The jury is still out on whether his contributions will be up
to the high standards we set for ourselves, so next year we will be accepting resumes
and writing samples for contributing writers. If you are interested please send a cover
letter, resume, writing sample, and results from a urine sample to

This year’s report is dedicated to Eric Turner, Eddie “No Neck” Johnson, Dante Lavelli
and Don Rogers.

Kevin’s Mock Draft:
Team Player POS School
1 Detroit Matthew Stafford QB Georgia
2 St. Louis Jason Smith OT Baylor
3 Kansas City Eugene Monroe OT Virginia
4 Seattle Mark Sanchez QB USC
5 Cleveland Aaron Curry OLB Wake Forest
6 Cincinnati Andre Smith OT Alabama
7 Oakland Michael Crabtree WR Texas Tech
8 Jacksonville Jeremy Maclin WR Missouri
9 Green Bay Brian Orakpo DE Texas
10 San Francisco Malcolm Jenkins CB Ohio State
11 Buffalo Brandon Pettigrew TE Okla St.
12 Denver Aaron Maybin OLB Penn State
13 Washington Tyson Jackson DE LSU
14 New Orleans Brian Cushing OLB USC
15 Houston BJ Raji DT Boston College
16 San Diego Michael Oher OT Ole Miss
17 New York Jets Josh Freeman QB Kansas St.
18 Denver (from Chicago) Knowshon Moreno RB Georgia
19 Tampa Bay Everitte Brown DE FSU
20 Detroit (from Dallas) Rey Maualuga MLB USC
21 Philadelphia Beanie Wells RB OSU
22 Minnesota Hakim Nicks WR UNC
23 New England Clay Matthews OLB USC
24 Atlanta Robert Ayers DE Tennessee
25 Miami Darius Butler CB UCONN
26 Baltimore Darrius Heyward-Bet WR Maryland
27 Indianapolis Ziggy Hood DT/DE Mizzou
28 Philadelphia (from Carolina) Phil Loadholt OT Alabama
29 New York Giants Kenny Britt WR Rutgers
30 Tennessee Percy Harvin WR Florida
31 Arizona Donald Brown RB UCONN
32 Pittsburgh Duke Robinson OG Alabama

Ryan’s Mock Draft
1. Detroit: Matthew Stafford, QB, Georgia.
2. St. Louis: Jason Smith, OT, Baylor
3. Kansas City: Aaron Curry, OLB, Wake Forest.
4. Seattle: Mark Sanchez, QB, USC.
5. Cleveland: Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech.
6. Cincinnati: Beanie Wells, HB, Ohio State.
7. Oakland: Jeremy Maclin, WR, Missouri.
8. Jacksonville: Eugene Monroe, OT, Virginia.
9. Green Bay: Malcolm Jenkins, CB, Ohio State
10. San Francisco: Andre Smith, OT, Alabama.
11. Buffalo: Tyson Jackson, DE, LSU.
12. Denver: B.J. Raji, DT, Boston College.
13. Washington: Aaron Maybin, DE, Penn State.
14. New Orleans: Robert Ayers, DE, Tennessee.
15. Houston: Brian Orakpo, DE, Texas.
16. San Diego: Knowshon Moreno, HB, Georgia.
17. NY Jets: Percy Harvin, WR, Florida.
18. Denver: Josh Freeman, QB, Kansas State
19. Tampa Bay: Brian Cushing, OLB, USC.
20. Detroit: Peria Jerry, DT, Mississippi.
21. Philadelphia: Michael Oher, OT, Mississippi.
22. Minnesota: Darrius Heyward-Bey, WR, Maryland.
23. New England: Rey Maualuga, MLB, USC.
24. Atlanta: Vontae Davis, CB, Illinois.
25. Miami: Clay Matthews, OLB, USC.
26. Baltimore: Brandon Pettigrew, TE, Oklahoma State.
27. Indianapolis: Ziggy Hood, DT, Missouri.
28. Buffalo: Eben Britton, OT, Arizona.
29. NY Giants: Kenny Britt, WR, Rutgers.
30. Tennessee: James Laurinaitis, MLB, Ohio State.
31. Arizona: Donald Brown, RB, Connecticut.
32. Pittsburgh: Eric Wood, C, Louisville.

Simply mash the link to view the Draft Report in its entirety: (if you think it's just some first round mock draft silliness, you're sorely mistaken. Trust me, you don't want to miss this...)

Ryan, Kevin, and Mark's Draft Report 2009