The Turk needs a raise.
With the NFL expanding offseason and training-camp rosters to 90 for the first time in league history, there will be even more fat to trim when the time comes to turn in playbooks.
Within the next nine days, teams will move to 75 and then to 53 players. The first deadline comes Monday at 4:00 p.m. ET. By Friday, August 31 at 9:00 p.m. ET, all teams must be at 53 players.
This means that 1,184 players who currently are practicing and playing will soon be not practicing or playing.
Well, not all of them. As an unprecedented throng floods the market, other teams will do the trash-treasure thing, looking for players who can help them out. The Cowboys will look for wideouts, the Packers will look for quarterbacks, the Raiders will look for running backs, the Giants will look for defensive tackles, the Bears will look for offensive linemen, and the Colts will look for defensive backs.
And that will trigger a second wave of roster cuts, with new arrivals bouncing players who thought they had made it onto the 53-man roster.
The sheer number of players who will be ready to play underscores the need for a real NFL minor league, which would be wholly owned and operated by the league — and which would give players a framework to stay in shape and get live reps via games played on Tuesday and Wednesday nights in cities that don’t have an NFL franchise.
That makes way too much sense to ever get any traction.
I think the move to expand the rosters to 90 players is a premeditated one that means the NFL is looking into the viability of a minor league system. I think they will wait and see how the new USFL does vs the UFL and buy them out to take that fanbase and bring it into the NFL.
In the past there were "competing" leagues like the USFL and World League Football. The World League eventually became NFL Europe which became NFL Europa before ceasing operations. NFL Europa failed because it was less of a minor league and more of a PR move. With bright colored uniforms and teams half full of international players that were 5'8'' 170lbs, it was a move to expand the game globally. This worked. With talks of expanding the league into Toronto and London in the future, the NFL does need to establish a minor league system of sorts so the talent pool is not watered down.
We have yet to see about the Vikings or jags moving to LA or Buffalo making the move to Toronto, but we do know the leage has long term plans to have a team or teams in Europe, and a minor league system would definitely supports that.
Rosters will go from 90 to 60 (counting practice squads). That means that 32 teams are cutting over 900 players that are atleast worthy of a look in an NFL minicamp.
I say we do the dirty work on here and set up the guide lines and franchises for a the new minor league system. Here are my recomendations.
The new league(s?) will be comprised of 4 - 3 team conferences. 1 play off game, 1 championship game. Rosters will be set at 60 players with no practice squad. This will account for 3/4 of those possible players. It will also help keep fringe NFL players going to the CFL and keeping their NFL dream alive with proper afiliation. I say there is an 8 game schedule. One international division. Here is my divisional layout
International - London, Frankfurt, Barcelona (I know all NFLE teams, but they are big cities already with facilities)
Northeastern Division - Toronto (if the Bills arent there), Rochester, Montreal
Southwestern Division - Albequerque, San Antonio, LA
Midwestern Division - Colombus, Lincoln, Kansas City Kansas
Did I say KC? I meant Des Moines!
As if this preseason can’t get any stranger.
On Friday, the [Cleveland Browns] play host to the [Philadelphia Eagles] in the first home preseason game. Typically, the third preseason game means the starters will play into the third quarter. In other words, it is known as “the dress rehearsal.”
Only there is one problem this year, the Browns open the season at home with the Eagles on Sept. 9.
Honestly, this has been one bizarre preseason.
It’s not that plenty of Browns fans haven’t already seen this team practice amid the news of the team selling, injuries to key players like [Trent Richardson] and a looming suspension to [Joe Haden]. This week, the team announced more than 37,000 fans attended the 14 training camp sessions in Berea. This is a team coming off a 4-12 record. You gotta love Brownstown.
Officially, training camp is closed, but the Browns still have camp-like work to do, according to Browns coach Pat Shurmur.
“I still like to think we’re in training camp mode even though they’re moving out of the hotel, but we’re progressing in a way that I visualized,” he said. “I think what’s important now is we play these preseason games with great energy, great passion and try to put a bunch of good plays together. I think the guys in the game are charged with winning the game and if we put enough good plays together that will happen. If we play sloppy or we don’t do the things we need to do as players and coaches then you lose a game. So that’s part of the message as we go forward as well.”
As far as Friday’s game, Eagles starting quarterback [Michael Vick] will be sidelined with an injury. Does it really matter what type of injury? The guy is always dinged up. Unfortunately for the Browns, the Eagles expect Vick to start the regular season opener.
Vanilla will be the flavor of the night as Browns fans will get an up-close look at quarterback [Brandon Weeden] in game action and the rest of the large contingent of rookies, sans Richardson.
Weeden showed that progression Shurmur talked about from preseason game one to two. His numbers improved and so, too, did the Browns offensive output.
“I’m not where I need to be but I’m still making steps in the right direction,” he said. “There’s just a comfort level. There’s a confidence level/comfort level playing quarterback especially in this system, in this league. I think it takes some time. I wasn’t stressing out over what was going to happen. I was going to continue to learn. I think, moving forward in the right direction, I feel pretty good with where I’m at.”
Four days after the Browns’ third preseason game, NFL teams must cut its roster to 80 players. A a day after the Browns wrap up the preseason at home against the [Chicago Bears] on Aug. 30, teams cut down to the mandatory 53.
While you want to see progression from the projected starters, it is the guys playing in the second half Friday and most of the game next week that will need to continue to perform.
Who should you keep an eye on Friday night? Sure, Weeden, Gordon and the first-teamers are important, but so is depth.
Here are some names to look for come the second half on Friday: [Josh Cooper] (WR), [Oniel Cousins] (OL), [L.J. Fort] (LB), Dan Gronkowski (TE), [Brandon Jackson] (RB), [Carlton Mitchell] (WR), [Chris Ogbonnaya] (RB), [Craig Robertson] (RB), [David Sims] (DB), Thomas Adonis (RB), [Owen Marecic] (FB).
And as always, hope and pray for no catastrophic injuries during meaningless practice football.
Heard another 1-15 prediction on Sirius NFL yesterday.... ughh...I love Sirius NFL...but after questions started coming in February about the draft and on more than one occasion I heard multiple Sirius NFL on air personalities(I won't call them prognosticators) tell listeners to not even start talking about the draft until after the Super bowl, because they don't even know where players are ranked nationally....Really? They wait for the rankings to come out before even learning who the better players are?
Shurmur seems to be a changed man this summer . he is showing some fire . some emotion out there . i like that . they say a team takes on a coaches personalty . keep the fire up Shurmur . last year the Browns had no pulse ..NONE .
I will be looking at the discipline tonight . i am hoping for fewer penaltys . if this team doesent shoot itself in the foot like it did last year it has a chance to upset a few teams .
they will be better the second half of the season IMHO after the kids get there NFL Legs under them .
i still have 6- 8 wins in pencil
stay healthy tonight and next week ..its key as we still dont have that much depth
Open bar till after the Browns game tonight . then everything is double after that
Two more Fri nights of racing left ..then Limaland closes ..way to early
we still have Eldora & Waynesfield on the schedule up through Rocktober
fans are likely getting their last look at a number of players who may never again put on a Browns uniform.
Most of the players currently on the roster bubble include undrafted free agents, injury fill-ins and other virtual unknowns, who may or may not one day emerge elsewhere in the NFL.
The Morning Kickoff …
TV: WKYC-TV 3 with Jim Donovan, Bernie Kosar and Dave Chudowsky.
The set-up: The Eagles have become the Browns’ farm team. In the past three years, the following former Eagles have matriculated to Cleveland: GM Tom Heckert; director of player personnel Jon Sandusky; director of college scouting John Spytek; coach Pat Shurmur; coordinators Brad Childress and Dick Jauron; assistant coaches Tim Hauck, Mark Whipple and Ray Rhodes; and players Sheldon Brown, Chris Gocong, Reggie Hodges, Jordan Norwood, Juqua Parker, Dimitri Patterson and Alex Smith. Now, they may send the Browns another key executive – Joe Banner, who is strongly rumored to be new owner Jimmy Haslam’s choice as club president. The teams play each other for real 15 days from now in the regular-season opener. For the first time in 365 days, the Browns will wear their brown jerseys.
Series history: The Eagles have won three of four in preseason meetings since 1999 and three of three in regular season in that time. Prior to expansion, the Browns dominated the Eagles and lead in overall regular-season games, 31-15-1. The Eagles lead in preseason, 6-4.
Eagles update: Having played the Patriots on Monday night, the Eagles are using this game as a primer on how to prepare in a short week. They have a short turnaround in Weeks 14 and 15. Coach Andy Reid will not play quarterback Michael Vick, who suffered bruised ribs on a hit on Monday night. Rookie training camp phenom Nick Foles (118.4 passer rating), a third-round pick from Arizona, will start at quarterback. Reid intends to lift his starters on offense and defense after the first quarter. That means playmakers LeSean McCoy, DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin will give way early to the likes of Bryce Brown, Riley Cooper and Marvin McNutt. Defensively, the Eagles’ “wide nine” defensive front will tax Mitchell Schwartz and measure how much the rookie right tackle has improved from Game 1 against Detroit, which posed a similar challenge.
Browns update: Shurmur intends to play his regulars a full half, but he said he will call the game conservatively and conceal his true intentions for the season opener. Shurmur wants to exercise quarterback Brandon Weeden’s arm to hone timing and familiarity with receivers, particularly Mohamed Massaquoi, Travis Benjamin and Jordan Cameron, who did not play last week in Green Bay, and Josh Gordon, who may have turned the corner in his fast-track development this week in practice. Players making their first preseason game appearances on defense include tackle Ahtyba Rubin and end Frostee Rucker. The Browns also want to continue to fine-tune tackles John Hughes, Billy Winn and Ronnie Cameron; linebacker James-Michael Johnson; cornerbacks Trevin Wade and Buster Skrine; and safeties Eric Hagg and David Sims.
Our take: Shurmur was an offensive assistant under Reid for 10 years in Philadelphia, and Childress for seven. They know how Reid approaches preseason games. You get the feeling these coaches will be playing a version of keep away, with neither showing anything other than basic plays each team has in its offense. Shurmur sees some value in exposing his team to the Eagles’ speed on offense and defense in preparation of the season opener. The game is an important opportunity for the following players on the roster bubble: tight end Evan Moore, wide receivers Carlton Mitchell and Josh Cooper, fullback Brad Smelley, defensive end Marcus Benard, and safety Sims.
Nobody in their right mind would have ever thought about a player being cut bu the Browns, ending-up elsewhere in the NFL. Just think . . . we are beginning to emerge as a team having "excess". WOW, I haven't thought about that since 1985..!!
I like that thought.
Can't wait till tonight. . . . . . . .. WOOF - WOOF !!
Gotta love it DG, sure signs that good things are coming the Browns way.
Keeper Floored TD so far so good.
Pass the Kool aid
Sure thing Jake
Heck, why not, It's game day. ONE for everyone
This round is on me.
Make Irish’s a tall double