There Is A Gleam in Cleveland

By: Michael Reghi

‘There’s a Gleam, Men’!!!!

I couldn’t help but recall the Marty Schottenheimer ‘mantra’ from a couple of decades ago, while watching Eric Mangini and the Browns go about their purposeful task of thrashing the New England Patriots Sunday! Schottenheimer was superb in attaching messages of importance to his Browns back in the day……even though many around the organization scoffed…could Eric Mangini be the modern-day ‘message man’?!?!

As you bask in the glow of back-to-back wins, yeah, NFL ‘mean everything’ wins…Browns fans, know this, and let this simmer for a while, because you deserve it….

Browns Running Back Peyton Hillis



Use that as your jumping off point, and go forward with the knowledge that this football team uses this approach in their preparation, and certainly the execution of, game planning by a coaching staff that has been superb, at the very top of their profession, the past two games.

This began in earnest, not just two weeks ago, but with all the personnel moves the Mike Holmgren/Tom Heckert duo manufactured beginning in March of this year. I’ve steadfastly maintained you would love the acquisitions of veterans Scott Fujita, Chris Gocong, Benjamin Watson, Sheldon Brown, and yes, the two veteran qb’s…Jake Delhomme and Seneca Wallace as well. Their Super Bowl experience, and winning veteran pedigrees are elements this team couldn’t even sniff in years gone by. Don’t underestimate it’s worth!

Now, throw in the Heckert ‘grand coup’….the fleecing of the Denver Broncos while acquiring Peyton Hillis for Brady Quinn….this is where it all began….add the draft excellence to the mix, Joe Haden, TJ Ward, and Colt McCoy, all RELEVANT starters in year one!! The total very conceivably could be FIVE through the first three rounds of the draft, had Monterio Hardesty and Shawn Lauvao, both ticketed for heavy workloads not been injured. That’s twelve additions of strong RELEVANCE…one fourth of a roster in one offseason.

Mangini, and his top lieutenants have been tremendous in using their resources, and instituting this air of winning expectations. aggressive, proactive in their approach, and instilling the belief this system is solid and secure has gone a helluva long way.

Now, on to the trigger man the past three football games….and doesn’t Colt McCoy have the look of a poised, composed, comfortable quarterback? Damn right he does!!! And how refreshing is that?

That’s why I’ve begged all of you not to get caught up in numbers with this young man, yet look at HOW he goes about handling the most important position in all of professional sports. His presence, and understanding of what the position entails goes well beyond his years. Will their be some difficult days? Of course there will. Know what? Won’t phase him. He doesn’t scare..won’t be imtimidated…nor will the game, nor its’ stage…EVER be too much for him to handle. PRESENCE..POISE…PERFORMANCE. I know this, he already looks more capable to accept this, and handle all the peaks and valleys than any other quarterback I’ve watched wearing the Browns uniform since they’ve been back. Don’t you love how he values the football, doesn’t get reckless, yet maintains an aggressive, attacking nature? I do! And, did you notice the 6 throws that went vertical, and stretched out the offense some! A product of the Brian Daboll trust in his growth.

Add in the ‘swashbuckling’ running game, fueled by a rejuvenated offensive line, and Peyton Hillis’ powerful efforts, a defense that seems to be thriving with Rob Ryan’s unconventional approach, and some special teams ‘gadgetry’…and viola! The results are most gratifying to Browns fans the world over, who have been waiting, and waiting, for something significant to latch onto.

Who knows, if Colt McCoy continues to blaze this Texas sized trail in Cleveland, he might be the one who makes a lackluster wide receiving corp become productive!!!  Yep, expect productive performances, while MAKING EVERYONE YOU PLAY WITH BETTER!!!!

Isn’t that a novel approach??????

The Cleveland Browns now EXPECT TO WIN…They most certainly are NFL RELEVANT once again. Let’s continue to monitor their growth in the eight games that remain this regular season, as the long dormant franchise begins to show signs of awakening from the hibernation!



1 Comment

  1. LOVE IT…. Let’s not give too much credit to Holmgren though….. It’s the coaches who are game planning and winning… Heckart too is great…. If Holmgren wants to coach again as Peter King said “there are jobs in Dallas and San Fran, anywhere” and he should just let Lerner know…

    yes, Holmgren trumped Heckart and Mangini with McCoy but he also saddled us with two jokes in Delhomme and Wallace

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