Browns tickets, Brock Osweiler, and dated podcasts: While We’re Waiting

Paul DePodesta and Sashi Brown
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Happy Friday everyone! It’s a great day in Cleveland and I don’t even know what all happened just yet. It’s just after 9:00 p.m. on Thursday night and I had to get rolling writing this here WWW for you all. I generally write them sometime between four and five on Thursday afternoon depending on what the end of my workday will allow. As it turned out, I spent that time yesterday writing about the Brock Osweiler trade. Speaking of which, we’re going to talk about the Browns today, but before we get there Patreon. That’s it. That’s all I’m saying. Patreon. Thanks!

The Browns have a great day, but not at the box office, at least anecdotally…

So, how about them Brownies? Yesterday afternoon as the dust was settling on the Brock Osweiler trade, and as the Browns were rumored to be hot after Jimmy Garoppolo, and after the team had bolstered their offensive line like no time since the days of Eric Steinbach, I asked my brother one question. “If the Browns trade for Jimmy G, are we going back on our decision to not renew our Browns tickets?” Simply stated, and without hesitation, my brother laughed and said, “No.”

That’s how bad the value proposition has become and how badly the 1-15 season stung our family’s connection to our pricey, four-seat, ten game season ticket package. Even after adding a professional football player at basically every position on the offensive line and with the thought of adding the best quarterback prospect potentially available who has also suited up in an NFL jersey before, my brother wasn’t budging. No conclusion. Just stating the facts. We might go to some games, but we’ll see if we can’t buy them for pennies on the dollar like it’s been on the secondary market for the majority of games since 1999. Even if tickets don’t bottom out like they have in the past, there’s no way we can possibly blow as much money as we did in a dreadful 2016 campaign.

So while yesterday was a good day, there’s a whole lot more to prove.

Podcasting too early can leave your podcasts dated…

I did a podcast about the Browns after the Bitonio news. Surely that would be the only thing the Browns do all day, right? Wrong. Anyway, please check out the episode.

Download the MP3

About all these contracts…

We’ll obviously have all the real numbers soon, but in the meantime…

Tretter got 3 years and $10 million guaranteed.

Kenny Britt got 4 years and $32.5 million with $17 million guaranteed.

The Zeitler contract though, sounds like the bidness. Five years, $60 mil and $31.5 mil guaranteed? Whoooo boy!

Joel Bitonio also got paid, even if not quite as drastically as Kevin Zeitler.

And it’s not over yet. The Browns are sure to make some more moves. Other than the Britt contract which seems like one that could be *ahem* inefficient, the rest of these are nice bets if you’re going to pony up ridiculous cash. Paying money to linemen always feels like less of a risk. As Mike Lombardi said on The Ringer, these guys aren’t generally impacted and continue to tote their “lunch pails” to work. I mean, yuck, but I agree.

Last but not least, the lost millions…

I was thinking about a lot of Browns things and I stumbled upon this old Crain’s Cleveland post by Kevin Kleps talking about all the buyout money the Browns have paid out over the years. With the Osweiler contract purchase, I thought it was an interesting read.

The seven coaches were fired with a combined 18 years remaining on their contracts, which brings us to what might be the most amazing number of all. The Browns’ head coaches, prior to Hue Jackson, had one more year left on their contracts when they were fired (18) than the number of seasons they spent coaching the team (16 years and 11 games).

If you count Crennel’s remaining salary at $10 million, the seven fired coaches were owed about $55.9 million when they were told their services were no longer needed.

And meanwhile all any of us ever wanted from the Browns was a win and here they are handing out millions for people not to work. We really are dumb. 🙂


Have a great weekend.

  • nj0
  • RGB

    Bill Polian discussing the Brock trade last night…


  • tigersbrowns2

    Herm Edwards too … they were sitting next to each other during this discussion.

  • nj0

    I’m convinced the Patriots, like the Russians, have a strong contingent of shills in the media waiting to do the bidding of Vladimir Belichick. I noticed, for example, that Mike Lombardi tweeted something about how the NFL might veto the Osweiler trade because trading cash for picks is against the rules. As with all things Lombardi, he was quickly shown to be wrong as the NFL okayed the trade with no hesitation.

  • RGB

    Ok, let’s add some fun to today’s mix.
    I’m flying out to New Orleans tomorrow.
    Any suggestions? (Other than drink lot’s of Hurricanes…)

  • nj0

    I’m a purveyor of dive bars and, when in New Orleans, always make a trip to Ms. Mae’s. Personally, I don’t view it as a dive, more of a locals bar, but many described it as such. Also, Snake and Jakes Christmas Lounge which is in a neighborhood by Tulane. While the Quarter is great, it can get to be a little too touristy.

    I haven’t done a lot of non-drinking activities in NO though. City Park, which is on the north side of town, is really big and seemed like a nice place to spend some time.

  • Steve

    While that certainly doesn’t help, everyone has lost subscribers by the bunches in this era. It’s more of a function of the big picture than anything ESPN is doing specifically. It’s not like their live sports mid-day are drawing any better ratings.

  • RGB

    We’re staying in the Quarter, with no car soooo…

  • Steve

    Absolutely, but I’m not sure if we’ll be able to time it perfectly. In the present, teams are probably looking to pass on Osweiler with other options available, and we’ve got to do the whole restructuring thing first anyway. Wait too long, and salary cap/backup QB spots will be filled up. Not wishing injury upon anyone, but if the Jets want to use six on Watson, and he decides to go on a year long mission trip, that would work out well for us.

  • Steve

    I’m not sure I’d call spending as much as everyone else “going the other way” in a town that will throw money hand over fist at a one win team every time they slightly change the shade of orange, but sure, not being the cheapest organization in the richest sport will probably help at least a little.

  • Steve

    We’re already there. It’s just that no one else in the country cares.

  • Pat Leonard

    Definitely! I mean, we’re talking about much better pass protection with the signings of Zeitler and Tretter, and another offseason for Kessler to study and grow in the offense. We saw the accuracy and (mostly) good decision-making last year, but he was struggling with the speed of the game as most rookies do. I really want to see how this plays out.

  • nj0

    Ah, understood. Then yeah, you’re best staying there. In the Quarter, I go to the Abbey and the Dragon’s Den. In general, I like the bars down Frenchman (East side of the Quarter).

  • Philip Cordes

    Just came across my phone RG3 gone…..and they are shopping Ostwaller (sp?) Either they have a deal with New England or its the draft.

  • Harv

    Jim can only Jim.

  • Harv


  • Pat Leonard

    That was the most sour grapes comment from Lombardi. It was glorious.

  • Pat Leonard

    It’s fascinating to think about him behind this revamped offensive line. Would he ever become Drew Brees? Maybe. Most likely not. But I don’t think Chad Pennington is too crazy.

  • Natedawg86

    Lot of balls to be thrown this offseason/preseason

  • Pat Leonard

    Interestingly enough, it looks like he dropped that line of reasoning in his Ringer article today. Nothing but praise now and recognizes the NBA equivalency. https://theringer.com/why-nfl-teams-shelled-out-millions-for-the-biggest-free-agents-fae60519216b#.pljke5qun

  • My “Jim” was a Chris.

  • nj0

    The immediate responses to this deal showed why we should be hesitant to trust some of these supposed experts. Even after the details emerged, some still didn’t seem to understand what was really going on. Not saying I’m a genius, but it seemed pretty obvious right away that this was buying a pick by taking on a bad contract. Critics also don’t understand that Osweiler has some value. He’s not worth $16M, but in a world where Brian Hoyer is worth $5M/yr guaranteed he has a decent amount of value.

  • Pat Leonard

    What’s kind of funny is that it seemed to be the people in my life who follow the NFL almost exclusively who didn’t immediately understand the trade. I have a friend who is a smart guy in spite of rooting for the Steelers, and when I explained what was happening he dropped his jaw and his eyes got wide. He had no precedent to understand this move because he doesn’t follow the NBA, NHL, or MLB.

  • nj0

    Good call. I noticed that too.

  • formerbrownsfan

    So this is how NFLing is done. Interesting.

  • Harv

    Same. A smart friend, born here but living in Chicago for years, texted me that eating this contract and playing Osweiler was stupider than the Jets signing Cutler – and all of Chicago HATES Cutler. Tried to tell him what’s up, but that made him go off on Browns supposedly about to trade their 2 first rounders for Pats backup QB. The Browns rep is now so bad that it’s hard for anyone from a distance not to go with the default incompetence explanation. The misbegotten Johnny Experiment was the last straw for most, and the org’s rep will now be harder to rehabilitate than getting outsiders to stop saying “Mistake on the Lake.”

  • Pat Leonard

    It’s definitely going to take years to change public perception of this organization. Anything other than “The Browns are the worst, dumbest, most embarrassing team in the league” does not compute for almost every NFL fan.

  • nj0

    Yup. Had the same thing with a Chicago colleague. I had to play the Mike Glennon card to shut him up.

  • Harv

    and the sneery attitude is legit. Forget the bad coaching hires, the throwing of total control from one unqualified person to the next, the almost annual philosophy changes. Just the draft history alone boggles the mind.

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