Cleveland Browns Daily expresses optimism over
On Friday’s “Cleveland Browns Daily, Driven by Liberty Ford,” co-hosts Vic Carucci and Nathan Zegura expressed their optimism of Alex Mack remaining in Cleveland. Doug Dieken, from the PNC Bank Cleveland Browns Radio Network, joined the show with his thoughts on the solidity of Mack’s play.
Don Banks, from Sports Illustrated, evaluated the Browns’ needs going in to the draft.
Here are some highlights:
Vic Carucci: “Jacksonville’s offer (to Mack) is a very matchable deal for the Browns. Honestly, when you look at it from the outside and put the numbers and structures together, all of it says that Alex is coming back to Cleveland. He did what the Browns basically said was the next best thing, which is allow Jacksonville to handle all the negotiations and they’ll just match it to make it their deal. If you are the Browns, you have to approach this situation with a sense of optimism that you are going to be a better football team in the next two years and Alex will be a part of this success that he hasn’t experienced in a while. What (the Browns) expect to see is improvement and they believe, on paper at least, that this is a better team and if it’s the way (Ray) Farmer and (Mike) Pettine intend on it to be, Alex Mack will be here for that.”
Nathan Zegura: “If the numbers are true, it makes sense that the Browns would match Jacksonville’s offer. Alex Mack is a perfect fit for what Kyle Shanahan is trying to do and when I saw the numbers of their offer, I was surprised at how reasonable it was. Overall, it seems to be a win-win for the Browns. At the end of the day, it gives the Browns the ability to lock in one of the best centers in the NFL, without doing any negotiating. The Browns ultimately proved to be very intelligent in the way they used their transition tag versus franchise tag. By opening it up this way, they are able to (potentially) retain Mack, while saving roughly two-million dollars. I don’t know how Alex feels, but the media is putting out the perception that he doesn’t want to be here. Why? To draw attention. This was about one thing and one thing only: Money. I don’t blame any professional athlete for trying to go out there and get as much money as he possibly can. Alex signing this offer sheet tells me that he is perfectly fine coming back to Cleveland. If he didn’t want to be a Brown, he would of taken the one-year deal and been done with it.”
Doug Dieken: “(Alex Mack) is probably one of the smartest centers in the league. He realized what the timing meant and about him getting the deal that he wanted. You know you have a quality player in Alex and when you have a quality player, you want to see him stay on your team. You know you are going to get a bang for your dollar in Alex because you’ve seen him play and you know what he can produce. I think he wants to be in Cleveland, but I think he wants to play for a winning football team and a team that has stability. Now that the front office is realigned and everyone is reporting to (Jimmy) Haslam, you have it where everyone is accountable to one guy. With that and the way they addressed potential needs in free agency, I think it’s important to look at the ten picks they have in the draft and the ability they have now to go out and take the best player available because those holes that were initially created has already been addressed.”
Don Banks: “To me, it seems that the Browns almost have to match Alex’s offer. To not would really open themselves up to all sorts of second guessing as to why they applied the transition tag, opposed to the franchise tag. It would cause a huge blunder because this whole situation could have been avoided in the first place. When you have someone who is a first round pick, a pro bowl talent, and someone who is a part of the solution, not the problem, in some ways, I’m surprised it has taken as long as it has for another team to put an offer on him. I think there are periods in the game where a center is the glue to the offensive line. You could never call it a glamor position, but I think it has become a very pivotal point of the line. You want a guy who is a good leader, a smart guy, who has the ability to makes calls. It has become a much respected position in the NFL and one that you don’t want to have a need for. …I think the Browns had a decent offseason. I don’t particularly think they went at it with the same level of aggressiveness that they did in the past years, but this is a draft that if the Browns are really going to win, they need to nail their picks. They need to come away with a quarterback, a top receiver, and a cornerback. If they can get that done, and with a defense that has been coming out the last two years, people can sit back and say that if there is some stability in Cleveland, this thing could finally head in the right direction.”