Here’s our new coach, spiffy orange tie and all:
Fun fact that isn’t fun at all: Joe Banner was the only one not wearing an orange tie. Jimmy Haslam was wearing an orange tie. WHY WAS BANNER NOT WEARING AN ORANGE TIE?
I’ve taken some time to digest this morning’s press conference, and even after trying my hardest to be ridiculously critical (an innate ability all Clevelanders possess at birth), I couldn’t really get over the genuine excitement that Rob Chudzinski had. I wrote in an earlier post about the Browns’ offseason that one of my top priorities was a coach that was a feel-good hire. I know feeling good about a coach doesn’t translate to wins, but it does show that he wants to win in Cleveland badly and has a personal connection to the franchise. Not everyone can say that.
The vibe that I got from the whole thing was very similar to the one I got from watching Terry Francona’s first press conference in Cleveland. Chud made it very clear that he was emotional about coming back to Cleveland, much like Francona. As a fan that loves the city and calls it my home, hearing these guys say the same is powerful. For all of the things Cleveland fans have endured, their passion for their teams has never died. Both of these coaches know that and feel it too. I love it.
Here are some of the highlights that I picked up while watching this morning. All of the quotes are from Chudzinski unless otherwise noted:
– “One of the big things that will happen once the staff is completed will be evaluating the roster together, talking through philosophy and how it fits the players.”
– “If you’re in this business and you’re not improving, then you shouldn’t be in the business.” Even though that didn’t work for the last regime… Whatever.
– “We’re gonna win here, how soon that will be, time will tell, but it’s gonna happen.” Thought a premature promise was coming, but he refrained. He also didn’t delve into the roster or the rest of his staff that is still to come, which I thought was smart.
– “We’ll be an attacking defense, getting after the quarterbacks, that will tie in more with the coordinator that is yet to be hired.” No specifics on what scheme defensively, but I really hope they retain the 4-3. Already see #Attack being a thing on Twitter, along with #Process.
– “This is a dream come true. I’ve been on cloud nine, I may have slept for an hour last night.” (Queue heartstring tugging, immense smiling)
– This one isn’t a quote, but he made it clear that he understands what the Browns mean to the region, which is hugely important.
– Haslam: “When you meet Rob, it comes across that he has a very clear offensive philosophy, no uncertainty, very decisive, understands how important the coaches around him are.”
– “This is the one that is special to me, can’t say enough about how excited I am.” He’s way better at being excited than Tim Tebow.
– “Built on a foundation of fundamentals and technique, focusing on great coaches, innovation, the best possible schemes, pushing the envelope.”
– “Like to be balanced in offensive attack, not necessarily meaning 50/50 run/pass.”
– “You have to put the players you have in the best possible position to make plays and be the players that they are.” He mentioned Carolina here and talked about doing things he hadn’t yet done in his career with Cam Newton as his quartetback. I thought it was a very good point to make.
– “I wouldn’t have missed this opportunity for the world, to bring back the pride, passion that the team has had in the past.” This one made SportsCenter. Pure money quote.
– Haslam, when speaking about him and Banner coming from very stable organizations: ” We took our time to make sure we find the right leadership.” Also said that it was “exceptionally important to make sure he was the right guy.” Very clear that they intend to make this a long-term hire.
– “Vertical, downfield passing game.” Brandon, your thoughts?
– Chud confirmed that he HAS previously consumed dog biscuits. YES.
– Along those lines, he told a story about setting a TV in the window of his house as a kid and purposely sitting outside in the snow and cold to watch games with his friends, simulating conditions at Municipal Stadium. May have been the coolest part of the press conference. Pissed that I never had that idea.
– Haslam: “Didn’t even know he was from Toledo going into it. It’s a nice to have not have to have, would have hired him if he were from Plano, TX.” Excellent choice of random city that nobody knows anyone from, Jimmy.
Watching the press conference today quickly rekindled my excitement for the future of the Cleveland Browns, which I totally saw coming a mile away. I wish the draft was right around the corner, but we still have some great playoff football to watch. As you watch this year, just imagine how awesome it will be when Chud takes us there. It’s going to happen, I can feel it. If you’re already figuring out ways this isn’t going to work, life is way too short. Get excited about this guy.
On tomorrow’s docket, a Cavs winning streak (fingers crossed), and some interesting Indians links. Hopefully there will be some GM and coordinator rumors circulating as well. It’s an exciting time in Cleveland, but when is it not?
I’ll leave you tonight with this.