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State of the Browns - Training Camp Preview
David Dorey
July 20, 2009
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This series of analysis on the 32 NFL teams takes a look at where teams have been over the last three years for each position - where they have ranked in the most notable categories and the hard statistics produced. This is to give a view of each team heading into training camp and what they most likely need to improve on this season and where their strengths lie that likely won't need any changes. Ending each team review is a brief summation of what to watch in training camp in August to uncover those developing situations that you can take advantage. Combining where teams have come from and what they have done in free agency and the NFL draft gives you the very same thing that NFL coaches are looking at as they attempt to improve their team for 2009.
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Training Camp Opens: July 24 (rookies), July 31 (veterans)
Head Coach: Eric Mangini (1st year)
Stadium: Cleveland Browns Stadium  Surface: Grass
2009 Schedule   2009 Roster   2008 Statistics   2008 Record: 4-12

QB Carries Rush YD Rush TD Pass Comp Comp % Pass YD YPP Pass TD Int Rank YD Rank TD
2006 51 262 3 508 317 62% 3242 10.2 15 25 22 27
2007 32 70 3 535 301 56% 3832 12.7 29 19 12 8
2008 33 78 0 484 237 49% 2533 10.7 11 20 32 32

Quarterback - Training camp is supposed to be where a starting quarterback is named but pretty much everyone expects Brady Quinn to be named the starter. Derrick Anderson went from the surprise of 2007 to being replaced last year and after virtually everyone was injured, the Browns ended 2008 as the worst passing team in the league. Now Eric Mangini takes over after leaving the Jets and there's no where to go but up in this passing game. Losing Kellen Winslow will make this passing attack that much worse, but it will be hard not to improve this year from being #32 in passing.

RB Carries Rush YD YPC Rush TD Target Rcv Catch % Catch YD Rcv TD Rank YD Rank TY Rank TD
2006 313 1023 3.3 4 77 56 73% 379 0 31 32 32
2007 396 1766 4.5 10 102 69 68% 591 4 8 9 12
2008 346 1364 3.9 5 108 71 66% 541 2 27 27 30

Running Backs - 2008 was considered a big failure for the rushing game but in reality, it was just in line with previous seasons other than the easy schedule of 2007 that made Jamal Lewis and even Derrick Anderson seem like studs. Lewis only managed a 3.6 yards per carry average and never once rushed for over 100 yards after having five such games in 2007. Jerome Harrison was next in workload but only had 34 carries so Lewis had a bad year despite being the true full-time back for the Browns. He turns 30 this year which is an even worse sign for a player who weighs 245 pounds and who had really only one good season in the last five years. So the Browns enter 2009 with a clearly declining Lewis and almost nothing behind him other than Harrison and the rookie James Davis who was picked with the Browns 6.22 pick. He was only the 14th back drafted and yet has a shot on this team for playing time.

WR Target Rcv Catch % Catch YD YPR Rcv TD Ranks YD Rank TD
2006 262 134 51% 1725 12.9 9 28 27
2007 261 141 54% 2057 14.6 20 24 10
2008 236 94 40% 1265 13.5 5 31 32

Wide Receivers - Braylon Edwards had a horrible 2008 season where he seemed to drop more passes than he caught. He fell from 1289 yards and 16 touchdowns in 2008 to only 873 yards and three scores last year. To make it worse on the team, Donte Stallworth has been suspended indefinitely for running over and killing a man. The Browns did use two high draft picks to address their need for wideouts and selected Brian Robiskie (2.04) and Mohamed Massaquoi (2.18). They also acquired David Patten and Mike Furrey. This was one of the worse units in the entire league last year and barring the rookies coming through it could be another long year ahead. Currently there is no reason to cover anyone other than Edwards and there's no lock he would catch it anyway.

TE Target Rcv Catch % Catch YD YPR Rcv TD Ranks YD Rank TD
2006 171 127 74% 1138 9 6 1 10
2007 170 95 56% 1218 12.8 5 3 15
2008 141 73 52% 735 10.1 4 16 14

Tight Ends
- The Browns let Kellen Winslow go and with him about half of the passing game is gone. Robert Royal will likely be the #1 tight end but that may not mean much. Royal is already 31 years old and his seven seasons in the NFL have never seen him with more than 33 catches for 351 yards. It will be a new offense this year and an entirely different look for the tight ends.

Training Camp Fantasy Angle - There could be a lot of change in this camp and yet it may not attract much fantasy attention. The rushing appears still relying on Jamal Lewis despite every reason to expect further decline. It is such a weak rushing game that a sixth round back (James Davis) gets hyped. Brady should end up as the starter but he has only one receiver that has ever had any success. This team is worth watching more for dynasty league implications in the hopes it comes together in future years but this appears to be a rebuilding year with the same players other than some rookie wideouts.

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Team-by-Team Offensive Line Review and Ratings
Head Coaching Changes and Their Fantasy Impact
Ease of Schedule for Quarterbacks
Ease of Schedule for Running Backs
Ease of Schedule for Receivers
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