Mornin’ y’all. The last episode of Rational! Snark! or Conspiracy! had a supposed #TeamApathy forming a fourth coalition in full force, but can the weight of back-to-back No. 1 overall picks, plus finally picking a defender from the Ohio State University in the NFL Draft prove too much inertia for those forces to overcome? Many important happenings have already occurred through the offseason, Training Camp, and through the first two weeks of the NFL season.
There are times the Browns appear to be a dumpster fire, but in the immortal words of TB2 “a dumpster fire can keep a poor man warm & cook his food.” So, may this post find you in the highest of spirits with the wind forever at your back, while you sit back and enjoy the latest episode of Rational! Snark! or Conspiracy!
Here’s how we play
Each scenario is given three answers in three separate categories. The rational category is for any fan actually still able to analytically dissect the latest Browns rebuild despite everything else (Bless ‘Em). The conspiracy category is for anyone thinking of wearing a tin foil hat with all these WiFi signals floating around as the government might be reading our minds. The snark category is for anyone needing a defense mechanism to get through yet another losing season for the Cleveland Browns.
Important to note: All comments in the conspiracy and snark categories are completely unconfirmed and have no specific intimate knowledge other than what is in the public sphere.
Any of the answers might be correct or they might all prove to be completely off-base. It is up to you to decide and post in the comments.
Let’s get started…
John Dorsey replaced Sashi Brown as general manager
#TeamRational: Sashi Brown set the team up with a ton of assets and his deconstruction of the Ray Farmer built roster allowed the Browns to finish with high enough picks to select both Myles Garrett and Baker Mayfield. However, his failures in the 2016 NFL Draft coupled with the quarterback situation he forced the team to run through the 2017 season left the Browns little choice but to hand the accumulated assets over to a more seasoned personnel director.
#TeamConspiracy: The entire A.J. McCarron escapade was a ploy designed as a power play to shove Brown out the door. Mission accomplished.
#TeamSnark: Nerds lost. The end.
Special teams coordinator Chris Tabor shown the door
#TeamRational: Even a special teams coordinator can only struggle at the basics of his job and still be able to retain it for so long. The special team coordinator for most NFL teams needs to be capable of figuring out the constantly shuffling loose ends of the bottom portions of the 53-man roster to cobble together a respectable unit. Such competence was never achieved under the direction of coach Tabor.
#TeamSnark: Only the Cleveland Browns can fire a long-time under-performing coach, yet seek out the only man in the NFL who might be just as bad at that particular job.
Todd Haley is hired to be the offensive coordinator and call plays
#TeamRational: Having a seasoned play-caller take over gameday responsibilities from Hue Jackson can only benefit the offense, which should allow it to be catered to the specific skill sets of the playmakers.
#TeamConspiracy: While most are focused on Drew Stanton and Moose-the-dog, it was really Haley who stole the Cuban sandwich.
#TeamSnark: Week 1 showed how much the offense progressed when the Browns had 40 pass attempts, seven sacks, and eight quarterback scrambles for 55 pass plays in poor conditions compared to 30 run plays called. In what wound up a tie game. Yep, good thing they aren’t forgetting the run game anymore. Yessiree, Bob.
Jarvis Landry, Chris Hubbard & the roster turnover remains tantamount
#TeamRational: Stability is important for a consistent winning franchise. The Browns are not such a franchise (yet), and the vast majority of the players replaced have been done so with better players. Initial pain for long-term stability.
#TeamConspiracy: The turnover chain is actually given to the player with the best probability of lasting until Week 1 2019 on the 53-man roster.
#TeamSnark: Carl Nassib and Mychal Kendricks thought they were smart with their money, but neither had their own, personal McDonalds, so how smart could they have been?
Offensive line post-Joe Thomas
#TeamRational: Starting a UDFA at left tackle in Week 1 who missed half of training camp, was limited in practice until the Friday walk-through before the game, and had never played a snap in the preseason next to Joel Bitonio gave the expected results. However, Desmond Harrison does have skills and it is too early to give up on him especially given the situation he was thrust into.
#TeamConspiracy: Joe Thomas was not only a Hall of Fame left tackle, but he was a Hall of Fame co-conspirator. Let’s just say that he wanted to ensure Browns’ fans appreciated what he had given them for 10,363 consecutive snaps and leave it at that.
#TeamSnark: New model, same result of non-Joe Thomas left tackles for the Browns since 1999.
Myles Garrett and Denzel Ward might have a future at this football thing
#TeamRational: Umm, the season is early and the youngsters have much to prove and… screw it. Drool.
#TeamConspiracy: In periods of offensive upheaval, in periods of offensive crisis, the football is not destroyed, it is merely transferred. These gentlemen aid in such transfers of possession.
#TeamSnark: Well, well, well. Look what happens when the Browns don’t trade out of the Top 5 in the NFL Draft.
Highly drafted rookies struggle for playing time
#TeamRational: The sign of a roster becoming competent is to have highly drafted rookie players not be able to immediately claim a starting position simply due to the fact that there was no talent at the position. The Browns believe they are becoming such a team through drafting a third-string running back and backup offensive lineman remains poor usage of high-level draft assets. Perhaps Baker Mayfield sitting for a year though can set him up to be an actual long-time franchise quarterback.
#TeamConspiracy: Dorsey understands a draft selection cannot prove themselves to be a bust until they actually show their capabilities, or lack thereof, on the football field.
#TeamSnark: Four snaps from four of your five top draft picks– all in the Top 67 selections– on a team that won zero games in 2017. Your No. 33 overall pick being inactive in favor of an undrafted free agent. That’s normal, right?
Josh Gordon’s time with the Browns comes to an end (imminent).
#TeamRational: Gordon’s troubled life during his time with the Browns finally became too much of a hassle for the team to accept him remaining on the roster.
#TeamConspiracy: Gordon has been kicked off two college teams, been suspended multiple times by the NFL, had an extended absence earlier this year due to unpaid child support, but it was an unauthorized photo shoot that did in his career? OK, if that’s what you want to believe.
#TeamSnark: HBO’s Hard Knocks is kicking themselves for not extending the show into the season.
Who Dat? Well, the Browns except…
#TeamRational: The coaching staff put the team in a position to win with a solid gameplan that was executed well; until the late fourth quarter. The two things Tresselball cannot afford are turnovers (especially deep in your own zone) and poor special teams. The Saints needed both the Tyrod Taylor turnover in the Browns red zone and Zane Gonzalez to fall apart to beat the Browns.
#TeamConspiracy: Is it really even a conspiracy to dig into the gambling debt records of a kicker after he misses four kicks in a dome? But, here’s what will really bake your noodle: Gonzalez makes both his extra points and the game is tied 20-20 because the Saints don’t go for that two-point conversion.
#TeamSnark: Who’s got a pair of lock cutters?
2018 WFNY Commentariat Team Formations
Absentee ballot: Tigersbrowns2, Kiddicus, Bryan
Lunch the breakfast sandwich
Absentee ballot: saggy, Hopwin, chrisdottcomm, Chris, maxfnmloans
Absentee ballot: Scripty, Sam Gold, Dave
Absentee ballot (as should be expected): Steve, MartyDaVille, Humboldt, nj0
- You think a coach can survive two owners, four general managers, and four head coaches without leaving behind a mole or two. The rusher got through on the blocked field goal? Haha, everything is going perfectly to plan. [↩]