Daily Dawg Tags: A clear choice for the top No. 66
By Thomas Moore
The Cleveland Browns open the 2017 NFL season in 66 days, which is also the uniform number of Hall of Fame guard Gene Hickerson.
In 66 days the Cleveland Browns will take the field at FirstEnergy Stadium for the opening of the 2017 NFL season.
Sixty-six is also the uniform number of Hall of Fame guard Gene Hickerson, who played for the Browns from 1957 through 1973.
Along the way he blocked for a trio of Hall of Fame running backs – Jim Brown, Bobby Mitchell and Leroy Kelly – was an All-NFL selection five times, went to six consecutive Pro Bowls and was a member of Cleveland’s 1964 championship team.
According to his bio on the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s website:
"By the time Hickerson retired following the 1973 season at age of 38, his accomplishments on the football field were unquestioned. During his tenure, the Browns never experienced a losing season. In all, he played in 202 games during his career and started at right guard in four NFL title games that included the Browns’ 27-0 win over the Baltimore Colts in the 1964 NFL Championship Game."
"Prior to Hickerson joining the Browns, there had been just seven runners in the entire history of the NFL to reach 1,000 yards rushing in a season. With Hickerson paving the way, the Browns featured a 1,000-yard rusher in every season but one during Gene’s first 10 pro seasons. Furthermore, Cleveland featured the NFL’s leading ground gainer in seven of those seasons. Hickerson’s contribution in helping that happen was recognized when he was named to the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1960s."
It took far too long, but Hickerson finally received a deserving honor when he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007 – coincidentally the same year the Browns drafted left tackle Joe Thomas, who will join Hickerson in the Hall of Fame once his playing days are over.
Cleveland Browns news:
ESPN hits the mark with ranking of best Browns quarterbacks
The Cleveland Browns list of the franchise’s top quarterbacks is pretty easy to compile, as ESPN’s recent poll found out.
Salary should not drive quarterback decision
The Cleveland Browns are paying Brock Osweiler a hefty sum in 2017, but that shouldn’t factor into Hue Jackson’s decision on the quarterback position.
Jabrill Peppers starting to find his niche (clevelandbrowns.com)
"Before the Browns drafted him with the 25th overall pick in April, Jabrill Peppers was described as the “ultimate Swiss Army knife” by NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein. Now, he’ll have a chance to be part of a young group in Cleveland trying to do something similar."
Will Mitchell Trubisky be on the sidelines early in the season? (NFL.com)
"Bears rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky says he is behind starter Mike Glennon “all the way.” He made as much clear in an interview with SiriusXM NFL Radio last week. But what about the people calling the shots? Last week on NFL Total Access, an interesting conversation developed between NFL Network’s Steve Wyche and possible soon-to-be Hall of Fame receiver Reggie Wayne on the factors that might end up deciding how the quarterback situation plays out in Chicago."
Best broadcasting prospect for every NFL team (ESPN)
"After former NFL quarterbacks Tony Romo and Jay Cutler took their talents to the broadcast booth this offseason, the question of who else could join the analyst ranks when his playing career ends immediately came to mind. NFL Nation reporters pick the players who would provide solid analysis, be critical when needed and bring a personality to the booth."
Do running quarterbacks really help running backs? (PFF)
"The narrative: Rushing quarterbacks help their running backs because they “open things up.” On the surface, this narrative makes plenty of sense. Defenses do have to account for rushing quarterbacks, which theoretically should make it easier for the running back (at least on some plays) to find a lane. For example: Perhaps a defensive end is only supposed to go after the quarterback on read-options. Does the narrative hold up?"
Cowboys Damien Wilson arrested for alleged assault (Dallas News)
"Dallas Cowboys linebacker Damien Wilson backed his truck into a woman and flashed a rifle at a man outside Toyota Stadium in Frisco on Tuesday night, police said Wednesday. Wilson faces charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon."