5 Biggest Stories/questions going into Browns training camp.

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NOTE: Today on NNR Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I discussed the news of the day and projected what the 2015 NFL season could be if the Browns had drafted Teddy Bridgewater rather than Johnny Manziel.

5 QB turned WR Terrell Pryor

Without question Pryor is best served by changing positions. He can become an outstanding WR/RB due to his quickness and overall speed. The only question is does he have good enough hands to catch the ball and can he hold onto it after a big hit. I have questions about that but it will be something to watch.

4 Will CB Justin Gilbert ever be an effective starter?

I doubt Gilbert will ever justify his top 10 1st round selection. If a CB can’t tackle in college, he will never be able to do that in the NFL. If both Gilbert and JFB end up busts, it should cost GM Ray Farmer his job.

3 Will QB Johnny Manziel ever develop into a decent backup?

I said in my 2014 pre-draft QB analysis that I wouldn’t touch Manziel with a 40 foot poll with a 10 foot extension. I had Teddy Bridgewater as my top QB. But as usual the Browns didn’t listen to NNR and took Manziel anyway. That alone should cost Farmer his job. Even if the owner tried to force me to take a guy I knew would never make it, I would quit rather than destroy my reputation as a talent evaluator.

2 Can the WR corps become decent?

The combination of Farmer’s refusal to draft a WR and the team’s inability to get a UFA WR to sign (except one that had as many TDs last year as I did) has left the team with a very questionable WR corps. He finally took one late in the draft this year. The lack of a starting quality QB has made recruiting WRs harder.

1 Can QB Josh McCown lead the team to 7 or 8 wins?

The answer to this question is NO WAY. McCown was handed the starting job by Lovie Smith and showed his appreciation by leading the Bucs to the 1st pick in the draft. Maybe Farmer is hoping that McCown can do that again. Even if McCown leads the Browns to the 1st pick overall, I have little confidence that Farmer can find a quality QB.

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on http://www.eBooks-Library.com/Contemporary/ and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

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What I look for in a college QB.

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What I look for in a college QB.

NOTE: Monday on NNR Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I looked at the teams that did not make the playoffs last year and what 5 things they had to do to get in this season.

1. Work ethic – It doesn’t matter how physically gifted a college QB might be. The NFL game for a QB is 70% mental and 30% athletic. There is no college QB that is mentally ready to play in the NFL. As good as Andrew Luck was at Stanford, he was not ready to read NFL defenses. It took a lot of film study to get him ready. When a QB has a reputation of being a party guy it is an indication that he does not take his game seriously enough.

2. Ability to convert film & playbook learning to the field – One of the reasons I was so high on Russell Wilson was his ability to step into Wisconsin and lead the team on the field. A QB has to totally internalize the playbook. He not only has to know what he is doing but what every other player on the field needs to do as well. Any NFL player can tell in the huddle if a QB knows the playbook or not. If not the team will loose respect for him and let down.

3. Arm Talent – This is not only arm strength but also accuracy and throwing motion. If I have to choose between accuracy and arm strength I select the former. The faster and smoother the throwing motion the better the chances of a QB succeeding at the NFL level.

4. Ability to stay healthy – This is much more than the ability to avoid the rush. It includes being smart about getting down or out of bounds to avoid a big hit. Wilson knows how to avoid the rush and can run but takes care of his body by running smart. Robert Griffin III has no feel for the rush and puts his body at risk every time he runs.

5. Leadership – While some downplay the leadership issue, it is critical for success at the NFL level. The QB must be the leader of the team.

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on http://www.eBooks-Library.com/Contemporary/ and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

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What happened to the NFL ready rookie QB?

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NOTE: Yesterday on NNR Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I looked at the teams that did not make the playoffs last year and what 5 things they had to do to get in this season.

There are a lot of teams looking for a franchise ready quarterback in the draft. But the league is not doing what they need to do to transform the college spread QB to an NFL drop back pocket guy.

Let me make 1 thing very clear. It is not the job of college coaches to get a QB ready to play at the next level. College coaches need to win games to stay employed. They have no incentive to get a QB ready for the NFL.

The spread offense defines the throw for most QB reads. Most college offenses use an either/or read on one defender. If the corner comes up to cover the short pattern, the throw goes to the long route. If he covers the deep route, the throw is to the short guy. If both are covered, most college QBs run.

In addition most pre-snap reads are done by the coaches then signaled in on picture boards. College QB prospects are also not expected to adjust protections. Those adjustments are made by the center or the signal from the coaches.

In the NFL, a QB must not only read the defense before the snap, but adjust to post snap defensive changes into things like combination man/zone coverages not seen in college ball. While defenses in college have not figured out the spread, NFL defenses have progressed well beyond the spread into the the most complex defenses in the history of the game.

The only way to transform a college spread QB into an NFL pocket passer is to give him a QB guru beside the QB coach. But in the NFL, the QB coach is not a destination but a stepping stone to Offensive Coordinator. As a result most QB coaches fail to recognize issues with mechanics, footwork and throwing motion. Those issues compound the problem and reduce the number of qualified potential QBs that could develop into starting quality guys.

There are issues as well teaching a college QB to read coverages. While tape work is required, a college QB has to be taught how to watch film. The QB also has to have a work ethic like that of Russell Wilson.

So the most important position in the NFL goes unfilled for many NFL teams. While there are potential candidates, they fail because they do not get the kind of coaching that it takes to develop them.

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on http://www.eBooks-Library.com/Contemporary/ and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

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Can the Browns win 6 or more games in 2015?

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NOTE: Today on NNR Tony Williams beat writer for Metro New York for both the Giants and Knicks joined me to review the Pro Football Talk totals for wins of each team.

For the Browns to go over 6 wins as predicted by PFT, several things are going to have to go their way.

5. The team can not have any injuries to the starters. This team has more depth than in past years but still is not deep enough to survive multiple injuries at any position.

4. The WR corps has to produce TD catches not just yards. I had as many TD receptions last season as Browns #1 WR Dwayne Bowe had. That is not a good thing.

3. The Browns running game has to take pressure off the QB and they have to hold onto the ball. I have a lot of hope for the running backs. But they have to produce 1st downs and not fumble.

2. The D has to stop the run. Last year the pass D was top 6. That was misleading because the Browns were among the worst against the run. They need to stop the run to allow the pass D to cause the picks that will turn a game around.

1. Josh McCown must have a very good year. Last year Tampa named McCown the starting QB early in training camp. He rewarded HC Lovie Smith by leading the team to the 1st pick overall in the 2015 draft. The QB play has been a disaster ever since the Browns came back in 1999. McCown has to produce points to give the Browns any chance to win 6+ games this year.

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on http://www.eBooks-Library.com/Contemporary/ and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

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  • Author:
  • Published: Jun 27th, 2015
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on It is time for Larry Dolan to open his pocketbook.

It is time for Larry Dolan to open his pocketbook.

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Tribe

NOTE: On NNR Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I discussed the Cavs draft, the recent news in the NBA & NFL, and the biggest questions facing the teams in the AFC South & West.

The Indians are struggling as usual. Those of you that listen to NNR know all I expect from the Tribe is that they stay interesting until the Browns opens training camp. Unfortunately that seldom happens.

The problem is that while his nephew James L. Dolan is willing to spend big bucks on the New York Knicks, Larry Dolan is a tightwad in owning the Indians. Evidently Larry has never heard the adage “it takes money to make money.”

The Knicks are the 5th highest payroll in the NBA. In 2014-15 they spent 80.1 million. The Tribe is the 26th highest spending team spending 63.8 million.

The Tribe is offensively and defensively challenged. If the good pitching gives up 2 runs, the team has little chance of winning. If the questionable defense adds an unearned run, the team has no chance of coming back.

Early this year several “experts” were expecting the Tribe to get into the playoffs. That prediction was in the dumpster after the first month of the season.

I know Larry is old but either sell the team or let a few moths fly out of your purse and spend some money on the team to bring in a couple of solid offensive players. Otherwise the Tribe will have more relief pitchers in the bullpen than fans in the seats.

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on http://www.eBooks-Library.com/Contemporary/ and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

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  • Published: Jun 21st, 2015
  • Category: NFL Football
  • Comments: Comments Off on Happy Fathers Day to All

Happy Fathers Day to All

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NOTE: Thursday on NNR Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports and I reviewed the Browns news, game 6 of the finals and the future of the Cavs.

On Friday I buried my mother. She passed in December but the family was unable to get together until now. That got me remembering my childhood. When your biggest disappointment is not getting to ride down Lombard Street in San Francisco, you had as nice a childhood as anyone could have wished for.

My Dad was a WWII hero, business owner, and my baseball coach. When our catcher broke a finger on his throwing hand, Dad called me in from 3rd base to catch. I had never played catcher but did my best. It was also the LAST PLACE I ever wanted to be.

I did my best to pass the love of sports on to my children. As a Browns fan, I must admit that I also made them aware of some pretty “colorful” language as well.

I am proud to say I have 3 wonderful young adults although my youngest daughter turned out to be a Cowboy fan. Nobody is perfect.

To all of you that take the time to listen to Samantha and me on NNR and read the postings here on FPS, I say thank you. And to all of those that are fathers, the best Fathers Day ever.

That is what I think. Tell us what you think by commenting here or tweeting me @NNRonDSN.

NOTE: News, Notes and Rumors podcast are BACK. Check out our thoughts on Fridays about the games coming up and Monday on the results of the weekend. My co-host is Samantha Bunten of NBC Sports. Podcasts can be heard on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/. Thanks for your support.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He edits http://fryingpansports.com. He has also published several novels on http://www.eBooks-Library.com/Contemporary/ and a non-fiction work at http://www.merriam-press.com/. Follow him on twitter @NNRonDSN to get the schedule of Special News, Notes and Rumors broadcasts. You can hear the previous shows on http://fryingpansports.com/radio-show/.

He also edits http://fryingpanpolitics.org/.

To keep up with the News, Notes & Rumors podcasts, follow me on twitter @NNRonDSN.

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