You read that correctly – these are three reasons why the Cleveland Browns need Terrell Owens. Before you stop reading or start a campaign to get me committed to an institution, just hear me out.
As Browns fans, we have always had our share of highs and lows and this season has been no different. Games we think should be an easy victory become a comedy of errors and an embarrassment. Games that we saw on the schedule this summer and knew, just knew, we were going to lose become wins. At 2-2 going into the bye week, fans in general are okay with the record, but are completely unhappy with the way the team performed to earn that record. Fans are looking for some sign that their hope of seeing some progress this year is not misplaced; some sign that this team is on the right track. And I think signing Terrell Owens would help solve a few of their current problems. Or at least take our minds off of them.
1) Colt McCoy doesn’t have a true No. 1 wide receiver. Owens still has skills, can still run routes and catch passes, and would most likely still demand double coverage from defenses.
One of the things that I believe about this season is that the front office needs to evaluate Colt McCoy and decide if he is our quarterback of the future. I think we can all agree on that. What we can’t seem to agree on is the criteria being used to complete that evaluation. While I can argue that his stats and the team’s record are not the most important things, they are hard to ignore. We have a group of young receivers learning a new offensive scheme after a shortened preseason. They are struggling to get separation, run routes, block, and most importantly catch passes. Is this McCoy’s fault? If we had some magically amazing wide receiver on the field would Colt look better? Would he BE better? That is the question.
2) The Browns don’t want to invest big money right on a free agent wide receiver. Terrell Owens can be had at a reasonable price (Let’s face it, he isn’t working in the NFL right now so I’m guessing he’d jump at league minimum).
I understood why the Browns didn’t spend big money on a wide receiver from the free agent market. You need to have receivers who work well with the style of your quarterback. Can they run the long routes like Randy Moss or Chad Ochocinco? Can they catch a pass in the backfield and use their running ability to turn it into an 80-yard TD run like Josh Cribbs or Calvin Johnson? Different receivers have different skill sets and they need to compeiment the quarterback. Until this team makes a determination on Colt McCoy, spending big money doesn’t make sense.
3) The Peyton Hillis contract negotiations – or lack thereof – is a distraction for the team. Owens is the king of playing to the media, causing controversy, and taking it all in stride. Let him be the focus of the talk and let Hillis get back to playing football.
Peyton Hillis strikes me as a very down-to-earth guy. I don’t think he enjoys all the talk and speculation about his recent illness or the progress of his contract talks. I think it is affecting his time in practice and how many snaps he is seeing during a game. With someone like Owens on the team, someone “larger than life” who soaks up the attention and knows how to handle it, focus would shift away from the “Wampus Cat” and he could get back to just playing football.
I think that Owens could use his powers for good and serve as a media target. True, in his younger days he caused some issues in Philadelphia and Dallas, but I didn’t hear of any issues when he was in Buffalo or Cincinnati. I believe we are close enough to both of his last two teams that we would have heard about issues here in Cleveland. If he really has grown up, his experience in dealing with the media is just what this team needs.
So. What have you learned here today? Sometimes, you have to really shake things up to make a change. Sometimes, you have to be bold and try something different to get a different result. Sometimes, someone can come up with an idea that sounds crazy at first, but, if you let it sink in, you’ll see that there is some sense in what she is saying.
For the record, I started out this post as a tongue-in-cheek poke at the people who are suggesting some really crazy things this week. But now? I kind of like the idea.