La Canfora’s hatchet job on Heckert.

Jason La Canfora, first with the Lombardi-to-Cleveland rumor, is out with a grotesquely biased assessment of the talent pool Tom Heckert bequeathed to his boy.  It reads like Mike Lombardi submitted an article to CBS which Jason La Canfora posted under his name.  Worse, Lombardi wrote it such that it reads petty and small and brimming with axe-grinding.  It’s also just factually...

Safest/riskiest draft picks, by position.

. Back before MIT introduced analytics to the sports lexicon.  Before data warehousing got renamed Big Data and recognized as a tech trend.  Even before AWS offered Elastic Map Reduce in the cloud… Kanick was doing number crunching on this question: What NFL Draft first round selections are most likely to wash-out? So that was about two years ago. The...

Smaug’s Cave found.

. . Well this is awkward.  Pretty quiet out there.  Nobody wants to say it?  Ok, I will: The Browns’ execution of this free agency period has been ‘disappointing.’ Browns currently sit with the most or second most cap space of any team; just as they started the FA season.  Their cap space –left to Banner/Lombardi by Heckert– provided a...

About that 2009 draft…

So.  Jason Smith is available.  Jets released him yesterday. Jason who? Jason ‘second pick in the 2009 draft‘ Smith, that’s who.  Consensus top-three pick.  Rams’ next Orlando Pace.  Anchor on the line for next decade.   Busting holes for Stephen Jackson; protecting Sam Bradford’s back. Three years later he’s being traded straight-up for journeyman OT Wayne Hunter.  Four years later...

Introducing the “Three Studs on the O-line” rule.

Emmitt Smith’s 164 rushing TDs are the most in NFL history.  His 175 TDs are second only to Jerry Rice’s 208.  (Smith’s eleven receiving TDs in 15 years says something unkind about his versatility but we don’t intend to go there.) He also brought the NFL’s most classless touchdown celebration to all 175: After every touchdown, Smith trotted behind the...

FA target #3: Andy Levitre

. I think we’ve done good work shoring up the Browns’ defense here at kanick with the additions of Keenan Lewis at CB and Dannell Ellerbe at ILB.  Both are upgrades over the incumbent Brownie and both increase the physical presence.  Both also should be bring some needed ‘AFC North’ DNA from their old teams.  God knows we can use more Steeler and...

Just how good is the Browns’ cap position?

“I’m hearing about the Browns’ good cap position.  How good is it?” Short answer:  Browns are in better shape, cap-wise, than any other team. Only the Bengals have a lower current cap hit number (65MM) than the Browns (73MM).  But the Bengals need to sign Andre Smith and Michael Johnson… and there are quite a few other UFAs the Bengals...

FA target #2: Dannell Ellerbe

Now that we have 100% solid cornerbacks on both sides, what’s next? Again:  I am working under the assumption that a fast, aggressive, playmaking edge rusher is coming at #6 in the draft. So I rate the Browns’ areas of need (excluding QB, punter, kicker) like this: Strengths:  D-line, WR, CB, O-line, RB Weaknesses:  Safeties, OLB, ILB, TE. Can you...

FA target #1: Keenan Lewis

. Update: Jamison Hensley gets it: There’s no question that Lewis is the Steelers’ top priority in free agency. But it’s going to be difficult to keep him considering he’s a rising player at a coveted position and the Steelers are cap-strapped again. Lewis stepped up in his first season as a starter, leading the AFC with 23 passes broken...

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