Monday, September 22, 2008

Stick a fork in 'em

Done. Over. Finished. After their awful 28-10 loss in Baltimore, the Browns' 2008 season of hope is already at an end. At 0-3 they are done and you can write it down now. And really, if this is how they are going to play this season I'm glad it's already over. I've laughed in years past in conversations with friends, all of us agreeing that we should never get our hopes up for the Browns. We made that mistake after somehow making the playoffs in 2002, with a very lucky 9-7 Browns squad. We pinned our hopes on Kelly Holcomb's arm and were bitterly disappointed. Then last year, the Browns came out of nowhere again, led by another no-name quarterback that made us forget Detmer/Couch/Holcomb/Wynn/Garcia/Dilfer/Frye. The 10-6 Browns of 2007 gave us reason to hope again and saw 6 different players sent to the Pro Bowl. Their high-powered offense re-wrote the franchise's record books. So it was safe to have high hopes for 2008, right? Wrong.

Ray Lewis delivers the blow that ended the 2008 Browns season

Derek Anderson is starting to look a lot like Kelly Holcomb of 2003. Forcing balls into coverage, overthrowing open receivers, taking sacks, and serving up those killer turnovers. Yesterday he was 14-for-37 for 125 yards, 1 touchdown, and 3 interceptions. Just think about those numbers for a second. There's a reason why he has a league-worst 43.5 passer rating. Yikes. And those interceptions directly led to 14 points for the Ravens. The Chiefs can forget about their idiotic fantasy of getting Brady Quinn. I have a feeling he's gonna be needed here in a Browns uniform in the not-too-distant future. When the Browns inevitably go into Cincy and lose this weekend and enter the bye week 0-4, I fully expect us to have a new head coach and new starting QB going into the Monday nighter against the Giants. And I don't think that is a knee-jerk pissed-off fan reaction. Those are necessary moves to save a team that just flat out quit yesterday in Baltimore.

And one final side note on yesterday's debacle - is there anything worse than watching Ray Lewis dance around like a lunatic? Or seeing Ed Reed gobble up another interception against the Browns and take it into the end zone untouched? I know the Ravens defense is good, but we made them look like it was 2000 all over again. Just utterly embarrassing on so many levels, I feel like my head is going to explode. And what does RAC have to say about it?

"Right now, we're not a very good football team. We're going to have to do a lot better or this thing's really going to get away from us." - Romeo Crennel
Even he sounds worried at this point, and he should be. He has maybe 7-10 days left as head coach of this football team...

Other Browns Notes: Terry Pluto gives his post-game scribbles... And he talks about another QB controversy in Cleveland (here we go again)... Don't miss Tony Grossi's noon podcast - always entertaining after a beatdown like yesterday... Pat McManamon also weighs in on a season that is slipping away.

Tribe Update: As embarrassed as I am with the Browns now, I'm equally proud of the way the Indians are finishing their season. And sad for the fact that their run is almost over. It's been a strange year to say the least for the Tribe. But there's no questioning this team's grit and determination in their quest to end the season with a winning record. Yesterday's 10-5 shellacking of the Tigers at the Prog (how bad is Dontrelle Willis now???) finally put them back over .500 for the first time since May 17th. It was the Tribe's sixth consecutive win and gave youngster Scott Lewis his third straight victory to start his major league career.

You get the feeling that if the season were somehow stretched for another month that the Indians would catch the White Sox and Twins. Amazingly, they are now only 5-1/2 behind Minnesota and just 8 behind Chicago. I know the Wedge-haters out there don't want to hear this, but the guy has done a great job juggling this line-up all year and keeping the team focused and playing hard. I for one am looking forward to next season. And I know that this Cleveland team won't quit like the Browns did yesterday.

Fausto provided a satisfying and lasting memory Friday night

And on a personal note, I was so glad to be in attendance at Friday night's game at the Prog. Seeing Shin-Soo Choo rise to cult-level status among the fans was one thing (this guy's swing is something to behold). But watching Fausto Carmona pound on Gary Sheffield's head was even more gratifying on so many levels. My hatred for all things Detroit has grown over the last couple years with the Pistons and their tired act, and now the Tigers and their bloated payroll and underachieving roster. Thank you Fausto for giving us that memory and a big f*ck you to you Gary Sheffield. You're a class act with your .223 average and $14M salary. I'm gonna enjoy having you around for one more year in the division, and watching your team fall flat on its face yet again.

The Indians will begin their final road trip of the year tonight in Boston with Zach Jackson going for the good guys against Josh Beckett. Not exactly the pitching match-up I'm most looking forward to, but Cliff Lee will get the start tomorrow night.