Maybe it’s the 90-degree weather, maybe it’s the NBA and MLB, or maybe it’s the transit of Venus across the sun (look it up), but I have found myself without much to say about the Cleveland Browns. We’re in the dog days of summer, except that cliché isn’t supposed to apply to this sport. I’ve had this page open for several days now, waiting for something to come into my brain to write about.
Anything, really. There have been no stories that are blown out of proportion. There have been no signings that make you scratch your head and say “Wait, I thought he was retired.” There have been no poorly handled questions about who is going to play position X, Y, or Q when the season actually starts later this year.
Even as I write this I find myself distracted by any and everything else. This team is boring right now.
And I am pumped about that.
It seems like every year brings a summer of irritation in the life of a Browns fan. Quarterback controversies, questionable draft picks, staph infections, new coaches, new management, new DUIs/motorcycle accidents, and a lockout are just a few examples from recent years. But this summer, while there is a quarterback situation and Phil Taylor’s pectoral situation, it has been pretty uninteresting. I think that’s a good thing.
I don’t know anything about what goes on over summer for the best teams in the NFL. I hear about them on draft day and then I hear about them in the preseason (unless a player hosts SNL, in which case I ignore that team altogether because no NFL player is going to match Peyton Manning’s performance, ever. Unless Brett Favre unretires, wins MVP, then hosts SNL and goes off-script and live-texts pictures of his junk to Jenn Sterger again. That would probably unseat Manning and his United Way commercial).
But then think about who you do hear about: the Dolphins and their bizarre ownership ideas and what kind of chaos is always going on. The Bengals and their revolving door of felons. The Jaguars and…wait, no, you don’t even hear about them during the season. Bad example.
Anyway, my point is that you usually don’t hear much about the good teams during the time between OTAs and camp. Anything the Browns can do to make them more like the good teams in the NFL is fine by me, even if it’s something that they’ve done by accident.
But here’s the cool thing. I don’t think this is by accident. I think Mike Holmgren is hard at work to keep the team under the local radar as much as possible, and that is a Herculean task. While every NFL team has hordes of blogs and writers that follow them religiously, I suspect that the coverage of Cleveland Browns football as it relates to the population of the city is one of the most outrageous ratios in the league (that was an odd phrasing, but work with me here). Trying to keep the Cleveland blogosphere from having much to talk about is usually as fruitful as throwing a check-down to Montario Hardesty. But it’s working.
So in a Seinfeldian twist, this post has essentially been about nothing. Nothing substantial is catching my eye, nothing is making me angry, and nothing is making me worry about the upcoming season.
I’m going ahead and chalking that up as the first victory of the 2012 season. Sadly, I’m not sure there’ll be too many more.