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News » Mangini starts to see spots

Mangini starts to see spots

Mangini starts to see spots

Dana Point, Calif. - Browns coach Eric Mangini gave some clarity to a few position competitions other than quarterback at NFL owners meetings this week.

Defensive line

He wants six guys, and wants most of them to be able to play any of the three line positions.

"Then you can create matchups against an opponent where you may want Shaun [Rogers] at end, just because you like the matchup against that [offensive] tackle, or you may want him at the left side instead of the right side," Mangini said. "You want to be able to spin it however you want to spin it."

He said he's been impressed with video review of Robaire Smith's 2007 season and is "excited" about having the end back for 2009. Smith missed last season after Achilles tendon surgery.

Offensive line

New free-agent additions Floyd Womack and John St. Clair will join Ryan Tucker and Rex Hadnot to compete for the two starting spots on the right side. Hadnot is the only one who hasn't played tackle.

"We're going to play the best players," Mangini said.

Running back

Jamal Lewis turns 30 before the season and Jason Wright left for Arizona in Free Agency. Jerome Harrison and free agent Noah Herron probably will be joined by another back from Free Agency or the draft.

"We'll look and see what opportunities there are," Mangini said. "There are a lot of backs over 30 who have been very productive. I don't think that age is necessarily the determining factor [in a decline]."

Favre wanted: Mangini told the New York Daily News that he has text-messaged former Jets and Packers quarterback Brett Favre to extend an invitation to visit Browns training camp this summer. "I don't think it would be anything formal," Mangini told the newspaper. "It's not like we are hiring him to run the scout team. I don't think he would be interested in that. He would be more like a visitor. An open invite."

Where art thou, Romeo?

It's sounding as if former Browns coach Romeo Crennel will do part-time work for Mangini while he convalesces from recent hip-replacement surgery.

Mangini wouldn't say whether Crennel formally has accepted some sort of consultant position with the Browns, but did indicate he's had ongoing conversations with him.

"He's been very helpful," Mangini said. "Whether it's to give me insight on the current players or [is someone to] bounce ideas off of. He might be able to help us through the draft . . . get his eyes on a couple players."

Draft shuffle: League owners approved a plan to restructure the order of the draft.

Starting in 2010, teams that don't make the playoffs will be seeded 1 through 20 based on regular-season records. Teams that make the playoffs will draft afterward based on how they exit the postseason.

Wild-card losers will draft 21st through 24th (in reverse order of their won-loss record), divisional playoff game losers will draft 25th through 28th, conference championship game losers will select 29th and 30th, and the Super Bowl loser and winner will draft last.

Currently, the draft order is based on regular-season records except for the Super Bowl participants.

More rules: The use of instant replay was expanded to include two more reviews - decisions on whether a play is an incomplete pass or a quarterback fumble and those involving a loose ball ruled to have hit the sideline. . . . Another rule change eliminates the automatic rekick after one illegal onside kick. . . . As expected, there was no vote on extending the regular-season to 17 or 18 games. But there was a lot of talk and analysis of information given owners by the competition committee. A vote on adding one or two games may occur in May, but the plan wouldn't be implemented until 2011 at the earliest.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: March 27, 2009

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Shaun Smith Name: Shaun Smith
Position: DT
Age: 26
Experience: 5 years
College: South Carolina
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