Prep notes for Joe Banner’s next podcast.
Joe Banner has created a twitter account in a transparent bid to be noticed and then hired by some media outlet. No doubt it will work as he brings just the right mix of insider crap and non-information to be as useless as same as 90% of national media types.
1. Obsequious Goodell praise, check.
Give Roger Goodell a lot of credit. If you know him you are not at all surprised by what he did today. More top execs should follow his lead
— Joe Banner (@JoeBanner13) August 28, 2014
2. Captain Obvious statement while at same time ignoring his own more interesting intersection and fail with the tweet’s subject, check.
The real question is if you were picking a coach today, what order would you pick them in. Chip Kelly is in my top 5. — Joe Banner (@JoeBanner13) August 28, 2014
3. More Captain Obvious.
Robert Quinn is the best pass rusher in the league, and his next contract will reset the price for all the pass rushers in the league.
— Joe Banner (@JoeBanner13) August 24, 2014
4. Straw man set up and knocked down, check. (Did anyone anywhere ever ‘rip’ Joe Banner for cutting Patterson? Not that I remember.)
We got ripped in 12 for cutting Dmitri Patterson, had a partially guaranteed contract in 13. The move added $6,000,000 to Browns cap for 14. — Joe Banner (@JoeBanner13) August 26, 2014
5. And of course the
courageous obligatory piling on Richie Incognito.
@JayGlazer If they sign him, they will still be thin at guard.
— Joe Banner (@JoeBanner13) August 25, 2014
This from the guy who traded out of the 4th and 5th round in 2013 and went to war with Sean Lauvao.
Oh yes, he’ll get a gig and he’ll fit right in.
And he’ll do podcasts. But he won’t do my podcast because here’s what I’d be asking about his well-documented punting of the Browns’ 2013 season.
I see you hopped on the Ross Tucker podcast. But there remain still a lot of unanswered questions concerning your time in Cleveland. As it appears you’re on a path toward football redemption and seemingly bidding to become the newest in a long list of unemployed front office types working for media outlets, perhaps you would like to share with your potential audience a fuller understanding of your maneuvers while Browns CEO-GM-lobbyist-faceofthebrowns. We’re looking for clarifications mind you. But it is a useful exercise because the prevailing opinion of your tenure here is … not positive. Here’s your chance to set things straight.
When you were hired you were heralded as a salary cap guy. But you inherited $40M in cap space from Tom Heckert whose plan was obviously to use it to build a deeper roster in 2013. Instead you sat on the cap space and when you were fired, Ray Farmer had approximately the same amount of cap you inherited.
- Why do you claim credit for leaving the team in good cap space when you simply maintained the status quo ante established by Tom Heckert?
- Why did you fire Tom Heckert? Was it a ‘want my own guys’ thing? Why is that sort of hiring practice (cronyism) ok?
- You let Alex Mack play out his contract in spite of having never missed a start and in a year when he was clearly the top UFA FA. I read that you wanted him to prove it. Wasn’t that just dumb? At the end, it appeared that Alex Mack would not have signed with the Browns under any circumstances if you were associated with the team, true or false? What did you make of most Berea hopping on Haslam’s jet within hours of your firing to visit Mack and persuade him to stay… basically cleaning up the mess you made? Did that also position the team for future success?
It was always unclear here whether you were a business guy dabbling in football or a football guy dabbling in both or simply a frustrated interior designer with a curious fondness for lots of orange in your office space.
- How much money did the Berea renovation cost and how many wins did it generate? If zero, why did you think the 95% of your fans who do not work in newly renovated offices would be interested in a tour showing your open office concepts with Successories type wall ornaments?
- Your tinkering with the Browns’ iconic uniforms was repulsive. No, that’s not a question.
Talent eval and acquisition.
We never understood the plan or the timeframe for execution of the plan or even if there really was a plan. From here, the plan seemed to be junk everything that worked from the previous regime and then buy more time. It’s the only explanation for your free agency signings, drafting, and coaching ‘moves.’ But perhaps you can shed some light.
- The 2013 offseason needs were obvious: CB2, FS, ILB, OLB, OG, WR1, WR2, TE, FB. Of these position groups you addressed only OLB in free agency. A free agency where the Browns were consistently in the best cap space of anyone in the league. Why didn’t you sign players in positions of need?
The Browns front four was the strength of the team in 2012. Rubin-Taylor-Sheard-Rucker1 with Winn, Hughes, Kitchen behind them. Meanwhile the linebacking corps was Jackson, Maiava, Gocong (a real need). You decided to reduce the number of linemen (existing strength) and increase the number of linebackers. You spend the vast majority of your offseason resources addressing the strongest part of the team — Kruger, Bryant, Mingo.
- Why did you fail to recognize the talent on the front four?
- Who were you bidding against for Paul Kruger?
- Desmond Bryant had a known heart condition before you signed him and missed the better part of last year due to it. Did you just ignore the medical report? Did you at least use it to lever some cost savings on his contract?
The 2013 Draft.
The draft deserves its own section. You were actually on that podcast touting your Armonty Bryant pick, weren’t you? Lol. You maybe forgot the rest of the 2013 draft or hoped that we have. We haven’t.
- Barkevious Mingo weighed 240 at the combine. You drafted him #6 overall to be an NFL lineman. You passed up an offer to move back in the first and pick up a second (the Rams’ Tavon Austin offer) in order to draft this undersized project player who seems to do the same things as your best defensive player (Sheard) and your most expensive one (Kruger). What was the thinking there?
- It was widely reported that you were peeved that you had no second round pick in 2013 (due to the Josh Gordon pick by Heckert in summer 2012).
- Would you have taken Josh Gordon with a second round pick? Do you think it was a bad pick?
- If you wanted a second round pick so badly, why didn’t you take the Rams’ deal?
- When you were hired the Browns had the shortest defensive backfield in the NFL and by a wide margin. The Seahawks big d-backs showed the importance of having personnel able to match up with the ongoing trend of longer WRs and TEs. You drafted undersized Leon McFadden in the third round. Did you not realize he was 5’9″ or did you not care?
- In spite of unfilled holes at OG, ILB, CB2, FS, and WR, you traded out of the fourth and fifth rounds in 2013. In your Tucker podcast, again, seem to view that as a positive in terms of ‘setting the team up for the future.’ If the goal of 2013 was to set things up for the future, how does that square with firing the coaching staff for failing to win enough games in 2013?
For a CEO, a “well-respected football man,” it sure seemed like other football men didn’t want to work for you. We’ll get to the coaching search after the Chud fiasco but cripes, even the Chud hire was difficult for you. Chip Kelly, Doug Marrone, Bill OBrien, Josh McDaniels, Marc Trestman, Bruce Ariens, Ken Whisenhunt, Greg Roman, Mike McCoy (and more) were linked to you before you finally got Chud to accept an offer. Your powers of persuasion are apparently not strong. No that’s not a question either.
- Having fired the men you hired less than a year earlier for failing to win in a year where your goal was to get positioned for 2014, were you surprised when A-list coaching candidates weren’t eager to return your calls?
- How’d the first Whisenhunt interview compare to the second one?
- How’d that Norv Turner exit interview go?
- Did you find it ironic that you met your demise in the same way that Chud met his? Hoisted by your own petard to paraphrase Shakespeare?
- Speaking of coaching hires, what exactly happened in the Chip Kelly interview? I have heard from people I trust that Kelly simply didn’t want to work for you due to your abrasive way. (Given your treatment of Chud, it’s hard to say Kelly was wrong.) Is this true? Did you and Chip Kelly simply not get along in your meeting? Because it must have been really awkward to jet out with Haslam for publicized meeting and to present him a blank check and then be turned down.
- In 2014, you interviewed or were reportedly interested in speaking with Ben McAdoo, Todd Bowles, Dan Quinn, Mike Munchak, Josh McDaniels, Ken Whisenhunt, Adam Gase, Dirk Koetter prior even to talking with Mike Pettine. Yet you have also mentioned something about positioning the Browns for success in 2014 blah, blah, blah in the Tucker interview or tweet. How does firing a rookie head coach without a firm replacement in place position a team for success in the next year? Isn’t it more likely that you yourself were angling for a reset on the old ‘three year window’ that most GMs get?
That’ll do it Joe, thanks for stopping by. Remarkably, your rehabilitation seems to be in full flower. I’ve no doubt you’ll be able to find work in the media. But hey, if Mike Lombardi can do it… amirite?
- Yes, Frostee Rucker. Not horrible. Check him this year as a starter with Cards and see. [back]