Free Agency

Peter King on CBD: Browns are ‘night and day different’ under John Dorsey

The buzz around the Browns is nearing an all-time offseason high thanks to the flurry of roster moves executed last week by general manager John Dorsey.

Longtime NFL authority and current writer of the Football Morning in America column Peter King joined Cleveland Browns Daily on Monday to discuss the latest happenings with the Browns. To no one's surprise, King gushed about Dorsey's doings in Cleveland.

"I said it to Dorsey the other day when I talked to him," King said. "Basically, have you felt what you've done in the last -- you know, you've been on the job 15 months. Look at this team. It's just a night and day different team.

"And obviously he's in very much of a deflecting mood now because they really haven't done anything yet. But they certainly have established a template for a very, very exciting offensive team and when Kareem Hunt begins playing sometime in November I guess, a team that could be about as complete offensively as there is."

Dorsey sent shockwaves through the NFL world last week with his acquisitions of Odell Beckham Jr., Olivier Vernon and Sheldon Richardson, filling three key areas for the Browns in the first period of free agency. But as King said, the job he's done has been greater than just one blockbuster trade.

In a little over a year, Dorsey has taken a winless team and turned it into a contender.

Take a look at a selection of photos of new Browns wideout Odell Beckham Jr., including ones from his time with new teammate Jarvis Landry back when they both attended LSU.

With contention comes expectation, and with Beckham comes attention. These are good things, and King feels the Browns are the right fit for Beckham.

"There is an urgency about football right now inside that team from what I can tell from the outside," King said. "And I think that is a really important thing for Odell Beckham to walk into so that 'hey listen, this train is rolling down the tracks. You're a big star and you're going to be a big part of it, but you've got to fit in, too.' I think he went to the right place.

"Playing with Baker Mayfield is going to be great for him. Because Baker Mayfield is not Eli Manning, Baker Mayfield is more of an Odell-type personality."

As a result of the deal that puts Beckham and Vernon in brown and orange, draft season -- an annual time for optimism and quick Google studies of the newest selections -- has a bit of a different feel this time around. The Browns aren't picking in the first round for the first time since 2008. They also just traded away their starting right guard (Kevin Zeitler) and a starting safety (Jabrill Peppers) to swing the two Pro Bowlers from New York.

That might cause a little concern for some. But as King made clear early and often Monday, he thinks the right person is making these decisions for Cleveland.

The Browns acquired edge rusher Olivier Vernon via trade with the New York Giants. View an assortment of photos featuring Vernon throughout his seven seasons in the NFL.

"It's an odd year for the Browns, obviously," King said. "But I would trust John Dorsey to plumb the depths of the safety market, No. 1, and get a reasonably priced guy to come in here after all this huge money has been spent on the position. And then I do think that one of the things that this draft has in abundance is it has second-to-fifth-round safety depth. So I wouldn't be too worried about what they're going to do to replace Peppers."

Beyond the personnel evaluation abilities, King explained another reason for why he thinks the Browns are in good hands with Dorsey at the controls: He understands and values what the Browns mean to the region and to professional football.

"John Dorsey and I, after the draft ended on Saturday, so all seven rounds are done, John Dorsey and I are sitting there having a Great Lakes beer," King recalled when talking about the unique passion surrounding the Browns. "And he's got his Cleveland Browns sweatshirt on that I think he wears to bed. He's so fired up and he's so excited and I remember -- I talked to him a lot that weekend -- and you know what he did the next day, his first day off in a while? John Dorsey drove to the Pro Football Hall of Fame and walked around the museum in Canton and got himself all fired up about where he was at this point in his life. And being the general manager of the Cleveland Browns and I'm telling you, there have been times where he thinks about where he is and the job he has and he gets goosebumps. Because he loves pro football history so much, the Browns mean so much to him, Paul Brown and Otto Graham and Jim Brown, those are names that are important to the life of John Dorsey.

"And it is so interesting to me that he now is the caretaker of this franchise, which is so rich in history, because there's no person I know in the NFL right now who reveres football history more than John Dorsey."

For a team steeped in tradition like the one that calls Cleveland home, that could be the difference between recycling stories of Brown, Graham, Sipe and Kosar, and finally spinning new tales of glory.

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