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News » Cleveland Browns Inside Slant 2008-10-03

Cleveland Browns Inside Slant 2008-10-03

Cleveland Browns Inside Slant 2008-10-03
Fans upset with the Browns' slow start want Romeo Crennel fired and quarterback Derek Anderson benched, but neither is going to happen, general manager Phil Savage says.

"We've spent three-plus years trying to put this team together and get our best players onto the field," Savage said a day after the Browns beat the Bengals for their first win this season. "I know for a fact 1,000 percent -- I've talked to people around the league, people who have been in this business a long time, coaches, front office types -- you don't go blowing things up after a couple games. We've had a dry spell for the first couple weeks, but you're not going to do it and be successful in this league.

"There has not been any thought to really changing quarterbacks or changing the coach or any of that. That's not the thing to do at this juncture of the season. You have to give the people a chance to pull themselves out of the situation."

The Browns are 1-3 heading into their bye in this season of great expectations. They were 2-2 after four games last year and finished 10-6.

"This isn't the start that we wanted, but at the bye we are going in with better momentum," Savage said. "We have enough good players, enough people around (Anderson) and he's a good enough talent with his ability that we're going to pull out of this and have our best football in front of us with him as the quarterback. We have got to help him play better. We have got to put him in positions to be successful."

The Browns scored 17 points in the fourth quarter against the Bengals. Anderson threw a four-yard fade to Braylon Edwards for a touchdown to put the Browns ahead 10-6. It was the first time Anderson and Edwards clicked like they did last season when they hooked up for 16 touchdown passes.

Running back Jamal Lewis said as far as he was concerned there never was a question about who the starting quarterback is, and Savage said the locker room is not questioning Anderson's leadership. A week before the season started, teammates voted Anderson co-captain along with center Hank Fraley.

"As G.M, I would love to see D.A. and Joe Thomas and Braylon Edwards take more ownership of this football team," Savage said. "They're our future. I think that would help us going forward."

Of course, it would be much easier to change quarterbacks than change coaches, but Savage believes in Crennel nonetheless. The Browns were 10-6 last year and in January, Crennel was rewarded with a two-year contract extension through 2011.

Savage said Crennel has brought on some criticism himself, namely by choosing to kick a field goal while losing 28-7 to the Cowboys in the fourth quarter and kicking a field goal with 3:21 left while losing 10-3 to the Steelers. Injuries, though, have played a key role in the slow start, Savage acknowledged, starting with training camp when Edwards missed the last three preseason games with a lacerated heel and Anderson missing the last two with a concussion.

Players are disappointed to be 1-3 when hopes were so high, but Savage believes Crennel can steady the ship.

"Romeo is going to be the same yesterday, today and tomorrow whether we're 0-3 or 10-3," Savage said. "I think the team understands that and appreciates the consistency he gives them on a week in and week out basis and the fact he stays in their corner. As long as they play hard for him, I don't think we have any issues at that position."

Crennel's career record is 21-31.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: October 3, 2008

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Kamerion Wimbley Name: Kamerion Wimbley
Position: LB
Age: 24
Experience: 3 years
College: Florida State
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