Eric Mangini had a quote attributed to him, supposedly from the time around the interview process, saying he can win with Brady Quinn. Since that has yet to be repeated by anyone in the organization, it has led to a lot of speculation that Mr. Mangini does not feel that way. Some NFL "insiders" have gone so far to say that nobody around the league thinks Quinn can win.
Which brings us to Jay Cutler, the kid with the rocket arm, but some questionable leadership skills. The player who has compiled some pretty impressive stats in his short time in the NFL, but hasn't won at a level that puts him at the top of the NFL. Is it because his defense is so bad, or does he put winning behind the compiling of his own statistics? Let's take a look at it through the eyes of our forums.
Bob Fergus got the discussion started, with some not-so-subtle shots at the detractors, before there were any detractors:
"I won't go into his stats because he was a rookie and had a diabetic condition that went untreated for his first year as a starter where he lost 35lbs over the course of the season and that effected his by-line but last year he tore it up after he got full treatment and held up all season. I've seen more of this kid than I could possibly want to and their isn't any question in my mind that he is a true friggen' stud and his best days are ahead of him. But some goober who hasn't seen nearly as much of him will say isn't that good according to his W/L record and then they will dig up the point that in 37 starts Jay has a below .500 winning percentage of 17-20 so lets just clear that out of the way."
(Bob provides the stats to back up his take, so click on the link to check them out.)LeadPipe, however, has concerns about the "toughness" of Jay Cutler:
"The rest of this....well, yeah you may get Cutler at a bargain. Never said he wasn't talented, just prefer his skin to be a little thicker. It's the way things work in the league. If you are banking on someone REALLY appreciating you, and not what you're worth to them, you are in for more than one disappointment in your NFL life."
Noles1 puts it simply:
"Interesting stuff. Not sure how I feel about this. Cutler has the skills but all this seems to bring into question his mental capacity."
Yogi gets the ball rolling with some talk of the Browns not acquiring Cutler, but facilitating a deal elsewhere:
"I was just watching Mike & Mike this morning and Greeny made the case that the Jets would love to have Cutler and when the possobility of the Browns being a trade partner with the Broncos came up, Greeny would then be very happy if the Jets were to get Quinn. The Browns are in the mix according to John Clayton because they would have a QB to send to Denver and play this season. The Jets do not."
SoulDawg74 wants nothing to do with anything, unless the Browns come out way ahead in the deal, in a way only he can:
"We need to keep this simple. Denver trades Cutler to the Jets for their #1 and #3 and the Broncos? Turn over both their #1's to the Browns for Quinn sans Vaseline."
Justmebd thinks it is too soon to cast aside a guy we gave up so much to get in the first place:
"I'm sorry. I'm not willing to cast aside Brady Quinn after only a few starts (and only one of those was he healthy). I have no interest in Jay Cutler at this time. I want to see what Brady Quinn has before I move on to the next QB. I've seen Derek Anderson and do not want. I haven't seen enough of Quinn to make an informed decision. Quinn was taken in the 1st Round, let's try and take advantage of that FOR ONCE!!!"
GreatGoo believes you take the player that has done something over the guy you think can do something:
"I'm all for Cutler. You know why? Some experts say he might be the next QB superstar in this league. I'll take that than risking it on Brady. I know we haven't seen enough of Brady to make a decision but at this point I don't care. I don't want to take another risk. I want a QB that is already proven and at times is one of the leagues best young stars. Brady? I don't know. He could be good/great with time. He could also make us wish we had DA starting again. At this point it is a big unknown."
Clevus, utters the words that scare the bejeezes out of me:
"Cutler = Anderson."
Here are a few threads that are gaining some steam. Join them and maybe you can see your name in next week's The Feel of the Fan. Just another thing to cross off the Bucket List!
Our Wide Receivers
Gotta get this guy, Draft Thread
And BlackBart58's weekly contribution: Mangini...get a clue Getting Closer
When it was announced that one of those first demotions was David Huff, paving the way for those old veterans Aaron Laffey, Scott Lewis and Jeromy Sowers to steal his spot.
Overall, there were few surprises on the list.
Skating Tripods found one:
"Meloan's the only one that surprises me here. I figured he'd get a decent look for that 7th spot. Looks to me like it's Zach Jackson's for sure now."
With Meloan gone, the "battle" for the final spot in the bullpen is coming down to probably Zach Jackson and B-List Favorite Eddie Mujica.
TitoFrancona has a favorite choice at this time:
"It's my personal preference that Jackson get's that last spot. Jackson would provide a lot of flexibility if he were the one kept. He could be used in long relief, spot starting and of course - loogy."
To which the ever-witty rebelwithoutaclue says:
"And the fact that Eddie Mujica is still Eddie Mujica."
Then, we come back to David Huff Saga. IronMike was not very fond of this decision:
"All this hype about David Huff and they send him out? Why not pitch him in the big league camp to the end of the month against major league talent? They shut him down and he didn't pitch in September. Guess they need to finish him off "again" in Columbus??? Same old horse s*it. Another Eric Wedge production. Hell if the guys got it, like they say he does, pitch him. Challenge him. Ozzie Guillen would. One of the worst places to be for a young player is in the Cleveland Indians system. Can't believe Huff could not do better than Laffey and Sowers. Consigliere you are going to have a real difficult time explaining this one to me."
Never slow to respond to a challenge, Consigliere tries to explain:
"I actually agree with him opening the season in Columbus.....if for no other reason than by bringing him up say at the end of April rather than the start of April, we get a whole extra year of control on him (7 years vs. 6 years)."
"To add, these guys need work. There are three weeks left in camp and with starters going longer, there are less innings available. I would agree if we were sending out Huff in order to keep the likes of Jason Johnson or Scott Elarton in the rotation, but Laffey and Sowers are both good options and have proven they are at this point more ready while Huff may need a little more seasoning and there is no need to rush him with Laffey, Sowers and Lewis ready. As for Sipp and Meloan, these guys need to pitch and not be relegated to the 7th bully spot where they hardly get any work. I'd rather they pitch meaningul innings in Columbus than pitch mop up duty as the 7th guy in Cleveland getting in once a week at most. And really, the 7 bullpen guys that open the season are not gonna be the 7 guys we roll with all year. Those last two spots to me will be in flux all year. I'm fine with a mop up guy or long reliever in the 7th spot like Jackson or one of the NRI guys. Plus, Sipp still needs more work since he missed a lot of time this offseason because of being shutdown with shoulder discomfort and Meloan is still being polished off. I am fine with this approach provided there are suitable alternatives. But when there are no alternatives, then yeah, I'm 100% with you."
The other big news to come out of Goodyear was Adam Miller was possibly going to need another surgery. This time, it could be career threatening. The news was received with all sorts of reaction, from pity for Miller to don't you need a career to have it threatened?
Cozmeesah wants to say:
"Man. I feel so bad for that kid. As frustrating as it is for us as fans, I'm sure that isn't one tenth the frustration that Adam feels himself. Poor kid. Hopefully he can do it because that would just be too bad for that arm and that talent to go down the drain from one damned finger."
Peeker643, sums up the negatives:
"Knock me over with a feather. This is completely stunning. Not bagging on the announcement/post Daz, just the protagonist."
If you even believe anything you read in print, believe this. If you want to see one of the highlights in the history of The Cleveland Fan, you MUST click on this thread. Scroll down until you come to davemannddd's post. Read it. Then read the responses. Classic. It is too lengthy to be a part of The Feel of the Fan. Which thoroughly disappoints me.
The game threads are also quite entertaining. Tonight's game versus the New Jersey Nets can be found here. Join in the fun of the ebb and flow of a game, and check out some of the fantastic superstitions kept going strong all season by the various posters. Akron, CSU and the Buckeyes
Akron hung tough with Gonzaga. Ohio State pulled another defeat from the jaws of victory.
The loss by Ohio State brought up a discussion about the merits of Thad Matta.
Fudu started it all off:
"Have to say right now I think the dude is overrated, mostly due to his X's and O's or lack there of. Good recruiter sure, but unless his star recruits get in done on the court in their individual play his teams are overrated too often (especially on offense). Does he even run an offense? He gets out coached too much considering he has some good talent. But is his talent as good as we all think?"
"Good recruiter, terrible coach. The fact that they lost practically at home to a MAAC school is a real embarrassment."
Upon the suggestion the problem is Matta's decision to recruit one and done type players, OldDawg wants to know:
"So you're suggesting lowering the bar as a recruiter to get not-NBA ready talent?? I am glad the big fella BJ Mullens didn't have a great year and be another one-and-doner like KK. Do you think they held his playing time down some to keep him around??"
WarAdmiral says to slow down with the Matta-Bashing:
"Thad is top notch, but he does have to figure a way to keep some continuity from year to year. Upper class men leadership is crucial to a program sustaining year to year high level performance. A couple of true lead guards would make his job a bit easier also. That falls back on him though, but getting and keeping very good lead guards seems to be an issue for many top level D1 programs. I have a theory, that there is higher volatility on lead guards through the evaluation process, than any other position, in regards to recruit rankings. I like Thad a great deal, and love the way his teams play. It might not, be the most efficient method, but it is very enjoyable, when the right pieces are in place. I expected a much better season from this edition, but the miss on Crable, really hurt the upside of this squad IMO."
Waborat thinks we need to look closer at the guys who have done the "one-and-done":
"Oden was the only recruit that Matta probably thought that he would lose after one year...Conley & Cook? No way...Koufos? Doubt it...Mullens? Maybe and only because of what happened with Oden...Turner? Nope....I agree with JB that it was a ton of cash that has torn that team apart...if you've got a chance to get a good player, you get em...I'll still take the ride of '07 anytime"
Obviously the news of the weekend was our Cleveland State University Vikings waffle-stomping Wake Forest. Relive all of the excitement from that game in its very own, game thread.
Jump in early and enjoy the show, with the CSU/Arizona game thread.
Here is hoping all of your brackets are looking better than mine. Except of course for my co-workers, since I am leading one of the pools I entered. Good thing I work with a bunch of scientists instead of jocks.