Hope for the Browns?
Except for one playoff appearance, the Cleveland Browns have been awful since returning to the NFL in 1999. This year has been particularly painful for Browns fans. The team is 1 and 7 and has been incredibly inept on offense. By point of reference, the Saints defense has scored a couple more touchdowns than the Browns offense. Maybe I'm a hopelessly optimistic fan, but I get some minor measure of hope from this interview of Coach Mangini. A lot of the interview could be dismissed as coach talk. However, one item jumped out from the interview. Over the last few years Browns fans have bemoaned the lack of discipline and excessive penalties.
Mangini: It's been frustrating, and what's frustrating is the amount of self-inflicted wounds. Now where we've been great is penalties. We're number one in the NFL in penalties, but we hired Dick McKenzie, who once was the head of officials. He not only does our challenges at the games, but he coaches our officials every day. So we have a coach for our officials who officiate practice, and they've been great.Football success is predicated on discipline. Yes, you need talent, but talented teams without discipline lose. This team started 1 and 7 and I'll go out on a limb and predict a 5 and 11 final record.
We track every penalty every day, and we went from 32nd in the NFL last year to first this year. And that's a sign of discipline. That's a sign of growth.