Wait, Cleveland isn’t Just a Cartoon Character?: Major Off Season Issues for the Browns – Part 1
Sometimes a spin off is awesome. Like Fraser for instance. And sometimes there’s the Cleveland Show.
Yes, not everyone loves the “Family Guy”, but it does have a certain formula that, if nothing else, is consistent. So if you like consistently random jokes concerning a fat man’s family, that include a talking dog and talking baby, interspersed with random cutaways and extensive cartoon violence with a giant chicken, this is the show for you. But when Cleveland was spun off from “Family Guy”, it was pretty much all down hill. Not every episode, mind you, but the good ones were far and few between. You know what that reminds me of? It reminds of another Cleveland show — the Cleveland Browns.
The Browns last year, prior to the draft, looked like they were in good shape. The surprisingly consistent Brian Hoyer was coming off injury, Josh Gordon was going to be a freaky amazing number one receiver leading the NFL with 1,646 yards in only 14 games in 2013 and Jordan Cameron was coming a pro bowl year with almost 1000 yards and 7 touchdowns. Now the Browns are looking like a super market after a freak snowstorm, absolutely bare with nothing left that anyone wants. So let talk about the three issues the Browns have to deal with in three parts (1) Josh Gordon and the WRs, (2) Jordan Cameron and the TEs and (3) the QB Conundrum.
Josh Gordon and the Wide Receivers
Gordon unfortunately, might have an actual problem. Suspended for the first two games of 2014 for failing a drug test, and then going the full monty and getting a full year suspension by being pulled over speeding while “impaired”, we all thought he was done with that. And when the substance abuse policy was changed and Gordon was allowed to play, we thought “let bygones be bygones”. But then the late season game suspension for “violating team rules” in part because of Johnny Football’s bad influence (which, by the way, is crazy that there was an an even worse influence on the Browns than Gordon) came by capped by this latest failure of the NFL’s drug screening process for the presence of alcohol leading to yet another year of suspension. It’s not hard to believe now, because of his history, but to put it in context, just imagine if breakout first year star Odell Beckham Jr. got suspended for two years for the same issues. We’d all be shocked.
Clearly, this is the end of the road for Gordon and the Browns, and perhaps for Gordon and the NFL in its entirety. It’s a shame since it was clear the Brown were willing to wait out the first suspension and continue building around Gordon for the future. But how does the saying go again? Oh yeah, fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me three times and, C’mon man!
For the Browns, this means they have a glaring need at WR, since the pair Miles Austin and Andrew Hawkins wasn’t the answer. Travis Benjamin and Taylor Gabriel look interesting, but they’re not ready for primetime. It’s going to be a barren wasteland out there next year without getting a WR in free agency or particularly high draft pick.
Later in the off season, we’ll look at potential free agent and draft targets at WR. But for now, we’ll turn to Jordon Cameron and the TE position, the next glaring issue…in our next article!
By Ha Kung Wong