Tag:Eric Mangini
Posted on: November 9, 2010 11:16 am
 

Hot Routes 11.9.10: Did Freeney quit?



Posted by Josh Katzowitz

- Eagles TE Brent Celek said Philadelphia’s offense made Colts DE Dwight Freeney quit during their game Sunday afternoon. Said Celek: When we were chipping and blocking Freeney, it was getting to the point where he was ready to give up on the field. He was so frustrated and mad.

- Next up on Eric Mangini’s hit list after knocking off former boss Bill Belichick last week: the Jets, the team that fired him two years ago.

-`And speaking of New York-Cleveland, Braylon Edwards is already talking smack to Browns fans about returning to Cleveland this weekend with the Jets. 

- Patriots PK Stephen Gostkowski likely will miss the next two games. No worries. They’ve got Wes Welker, after all. Just kidding. They’ll sign another kicker sometime this week.

- And speaking of kickers, Jets PK Nick Folk = Donovan McNabb.

- The no-huddle offense worked wonders for the Vikings on Sunday. Maybe they should consider doing that more often.

- Somebody out there is a pretty big Jacksonville Jaguars fan. And she’s pretty hardcore.

- I had no idea, but apparently, Kurt Warner is still alive on “Dancing With the Stars.”

- A StarCaps update for you. The Supreme Court will not be taking a look at the case.

- Ray Rice probably shouldn’t be boasting about the way he gets out of speeding tickets.

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Posted on: November 7, 2010 2:40 pm
 

Browns surprisingly lead the Pats

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

You rarely can write this, but Patriots coach Bill Belichick is getting outcoached and his New England squad is getting outclassed by an inferior team. On this occasion, Browns coach Eric Mangini, Belichick's former assistant, is the one who’s making New England look bad, and Cleveland leads 17-7 at halftime.

How did it happen? Browns RB Peyton Hillis had a big first quarter – 62 yards and a touchdown – and rookie QB Colt McCoy, making just his third start, is effectively efficient.

And two trick plays have confused the Patriots.

The first: On a fourth-and-one at mid-field, the Browns lined up in a power-run formation. McCoy made a presnap gesture, and suddenly, Cleveland split four wide. Then, as New England scrambled to cover the quartet of receivers, McCoy went straight ahead for the QB sneak and the first down.

The second: Midway through the second quarter after the Patriots had pulled to within three points, the entire offensive line, minus the center, stood as McCoy hiked the ball. Unbeknownst to New England, Chansi Stuckey was hiding behind right guard Billy Yates.

After the snap, McCoy faked to Joshua Cribbs on the end-around. Instead, he stuck the ball into Stuckey’s arms, and he dove for the pylon in the corner of the end zone for the 11-yard TD.

Meanwhile, the Patriots run game (36 yards) has been irrelevant, and Tom Brady hasn’t looked sharp. New England has been a good second-half team this year, but the Patriots have some work to do to get back in this game.

And just because it’s a cool stat: McCoy is the only QB in NFL history to start his first three games against Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks. And how did that go for him? Respectable loss to Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger. A big win against New Orleans’ Drew Brees. And so far, so good vs. New England’s Brady.

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Posted on: November 4, 2010 8:35 am
 

Hot Routes 11.04.10 bumps and bruises, no Moss

Hot Routes

Posted by Andy Benoit

It’s not often that Donald Driver misses a game, but the veteran receiver has been ineffective the past two weeks fighting through a quad injury. He’s going to sit out against a Cowboys defense that must be suffering from quad injuries across the board.


Ryan Pickett (ankle) also missed practice Wednesday and is unlikely to play.
 

Raheem Morris keeps talking up his Bucs

 
The Ravens had some interest in Merriman

 
If you’ve ever found yourself wishing you could know more about what Alan Faneca is like away from the field, here’s your chance.

 Normally something like a starting quarterback change would get its own post, but in the case of the Cardinals, what’s the point? If you still care, they’ve given the job back to Derek Anderson.

 
The Bills placed ailing right tackle Cornell Green on IR Wednesday. (No link, but trust us…)

 
DeAngelo Williams missed last week’s game with a sprained foot and missed Wednesday’s practice with a “still-sprained” foot.


And, to prove we don’t favor big name running backs over small-to-medium-sized named cornerbacks, we’ll tell you that Chicago’s Zack Bowman is also still battling a sprained foot

 
Forget Moss, can we start cranking up the Mangini-Belichick drama this week, PLEASE? They’re now in separate divisions, folks. These chances aren’t going to come around often.


 
With this being their bye, the Broncos have been sent on vacation…even though they took one two weeks ago against the Raiders


 
Some props for a Lions defensive line that is really coming alive.


 
Two interceptions and a touchdown got Aqib Talib NFC Defensive Player of the Week honors.

For the second time in three years, the Chargers have placed wide receiver Craig “Buster” Davis on IR. It doesn’t bode well that he’s a former first-round pick and yet hardly anyone has noticed this move. (It actually happened Tuesday!)


 
Rolando McClain is willing to talk to the media if fans can give the Raiders a home sellout. How the media and fans’ ticket purchases are related is hard to say, but that’s McClain’s offer – take it or leave it. 


 
Ellis Hobbs’ struggles may be due to a hip injury. You have to love the cornerback’s attitude about the whole thing (seriously).

Posted on: October 13, 2010 10:43 pm
 

Jerome Harrison was confused as well

J. Harrison has been traded to Philadelphia, and now, he might get a chance to contribute (Getty).

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Now that former Browns RB Jerome Harrison has been traded to Philadelphia for RB Mike Bellas detailed here – he can speak the truth about his wonderment of why Cleveland coach Eric Mangini didn’t play him.

Will Brinson has theorized all along that Harrison was holding Mangini’s family hostage in his basement, but apparently, that’s not the case, because Harrison couldn’t figure it out either. After all, Harrison rushed for 561 yards in the final three games of last season – three Browns wins, mind you – and might have saved Mangini’s job in the process.

In a phone conversation he had with the Cleveland Plain Dealer’s Mary Kay Cabot, Harrison said he wasn’t sure what the deal was.

"I didn't understand one part of how it happened,” Harrison said. “I didn't get into any fights with anybody and I didn't think there were any bad feelings toward me by any of the coaches or anything."

After the end of last season, the Browns drafted Montario Hardesty – who ended up tearing his ACL – and trading for Peyton Hillis. Once Hardesty went down, the starting job went to Hillis instead of Harrison.

"It was mind-boggling," said Harrison. "But it's the nature of the business. I didn't understand it. I'm not an angry person, so I'm not upset. But I was a little frustrated.

"I don't think I was what they wanted. People have different likes and dislikes. I don't think I was in their current plans or their future plans."

While Harrison didn’t make any overtly-obvious disparaging remarks about the team this season – though you didn’t have to be a mind-reader to figure out he was unhappy – it sounds like the organization wasn’t happy with what Harrison was saying either.

From the Plain Dealer:

Harrison, in the last year of his contract, did get 16 carries the following week against Kansas City, but lost a fumble. The Browns thought he was down, but Mangini stressed that it shouldn't have been on the ground in the first place. The next week, Harrison was inactive with a thigh injury in Baltimore while Hillis rushed for 144 yards.

A few days later, when Harrison was asked if his role might change, he said, "I didn't know what my role was in the first place." Asked about his carries, he said, "What carries?"

The comments didn't sit well with the Browns, but Harrison said he never heard directly of any displeasure. Instead, Mangini said publicly that if Harrison had a problem, his door was always open. Harrison never took him up on it.

The following game against Cincinnati, the Browns got their point across: Harrison stood on the sidelines the whole game, trotting out only for the final three plays in the victory formation.


After all that, though, Harrison leaves the team with positive thoughts. Perhaps it’s because he’s going to an NFC East contender where he’ll have a chance to contribute while leaving a Browns squad that will have to fight hard not to finish in the AFC North basement.

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Posted on: October 7, 2010 10:55 pm
 

Mangini swears he doesn't hate Jerome Harrison

Posted by Will Brinson

If you've watched a Browns game this year (and/or read anything I've written about Cleveland's running game), there's a distinct chance that you could think Jerome Harrison is currently holding Eric Mangini's family hostage in his basement, Breaking Bad style.

Now, frankly, Peyton Hillis has justified the carries he's been given for the past few weeks, so it's kind of hard to hate on Mangini's decision, but it's at least reasonable to wonder if he dislikes Harrison. Thankfully, someone asked, via Stephanie Storm at the Akron Beacon-Journalposed the old "Is Jerome Harrison in your doghouse?" question.

"No, not at all," Mangini said. "He'll probably have some opportunities this week and every week is different. No, that's not the case at all."

However, considering that most of Harrison's carries either don't exist or are in the worst possible field position imaginable, that's not necessarily a good thing.

And, according to Mangini, even though Harrison came out and publicly mentioned something sarcastic about his "role" in the offense, the two still haven't had "any talks or anything, but [Mangini] is always open to that."

So, to sum up, we've got a running back making public statements about not getting enough carries, followed by a coach who says said running back is not in the doghouse even though he'll probably get the "same" carries in the coming weeks -- regardless of the fact that he rushed for a season's worth of yardage in three games last year and the other running back on the roster is banged up -- and there is NOTHING WRONG WITH THIS SO STOP ASKING QUESTIONS.
Posted on: October 4, 2010 10:05 pm
 

Delhomme looking to start Sunday

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

It sounds like Seneca Wallace’s reign as the Browns QB could end this week. That’s the feeling of Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer after the media spoke to Cleveland coach Eric Mangini today.
Delhomme
"He should practice on Wednesday,” Mangini said. "I thought we had a really good chance [against the Bengals]. I want to see with a bigger load how he responds. That's where we are on Monday. Hopefully we'll be saying the same thing on Thursday."

Still, Wallace played well in Delhomme’s absence. He nearly led the Browns to an upset against Baltimore two weeks ago, and of course, he helped beat the Bengals on Sunday.

"He's gotten more and more comfortable running the offense," said Mangini. "And I don't want anybody to think that by putting Jake in this is some knock on Seneca. I think Seneca has done a great job. And he's played well and he's played well against really tough defenses and I have no problem with him starting [and] playing."

Wallace Just for comparison’s sake, here’s how Delhomme (one game) and Wallace (three games) compare this year.

Delhomme has completed 54.1 percent of his passes for 227 yards, one TD and two INTs. Wallace has completed 61.2 percent of his passes for 554 yards (185 yards per game), three TDs and two INTs.

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Posted on: September 28, 2010 2:52 pm
Edited on: September 28, 2010 4:19 pm
 

Dey Took Er Jobs: Wither Trent Edwards?

Dey Took Er Jobs takes a look at the various job controversies around the league. If you don't get the title, you don't watch enough South Park .

Posted by Will Brinson


The Buffalo Bills, probably the most quarterback-desperate team in the NFL over the past 10 or so years, made the surprising decision to cut Trent Edwards yesterday. He is jobless and homeless right now, but -- thank goodness for that Stanford education! -- certainly not unemployable.

Still, don't feel that sorry for him. After all, by 4:00 PM EST today, when the NFL process all the waiver claims on Edwards , he's going to have a new job and it will likely be in a place that is less like Buffalo potentially more productive for his future.

That's the beauty of getting kicked out of Buffalo: the grass is always greener, even once you've been on the other side for 10 years. Of course, if you're Edwards, you have to be disappointed that the gig didn't work out -- after all, he was drafted by the Bills out of Stanford and given plenty of opportunities to win the starting job and resurrect the franchise. Clearly, that didn't happen.

So knowing that he'll end up somewhere, the question becomes "Where does he get his second chance?"

According to the NFL, the teams with the worst record this year will have priority on waiver claims, and assuming that multiple teams with the same record make a claim on Edwards, a tie will be broken "based on current strength-of-schedule of the involved clubs or by lot if a tie still exists."

Let's say that all the 0-3 teams make a claim as well as the Vikings, Seahawks and Jets. The order would be thus: 49ers/Browns (7-2 opponent record), Lions/Bills (6-3), Panthers (5-4), Jaguars (4-5), Vikings (4-5), Jets (6-3) and Seahawks (2-7).

According to Jason LaCanfora , though, "no winless teams" made a claim on Edwards, thereby eliminating six teams from consideration and wasting about 15 minutes of my time, primarily because I'm horribly bad at math.

Out of those teams, the 49ers are most surprising (see below), but, considering that LaCanfora has a knack for being correct and also happens to work for a media outlet owned by the organization who takes the waiver claims in from the teams, it seems that one fo the 26 other squads will be going after the former team captain in Buffalo.

The Vikings haven't been rumored insofar as I can tell but they still make sense, especially if you buy into the theory that Brett Favre might get hurt. (Oh, and the theory that everyone's scared of having to put Tavaris Jackson into the game.)

The Jets are considered a team that would be heavily interested in having Edwards on board -- but probably only to steal secrets from the Bills in anticipation of their upcoming ... HAHAHAHA, sorry. Okay, actually because they'd prefer to have someone more lively than Mark Brunell to step in if Mark Sanchez is injured or falters.

And the Seahawks make absolute sense because Edwards is a cheap third option when should Matt Hasselbeck suffer an injury and they realize that Charlie Whitehurst isn't cut out to run their offense.

***
Why the Niners didn't make a claim is beyond me -- they're a team who needs to find an offensive identity, having been continually perplexed by the inconsistency of Alex Smith, who looked to have "arrived" during a close loss to the Saints in Week 2, only to have "checked out for the duration" against the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday. Oh, and they're the only 0-3 team,

Edwards would provide them an option that's not David Carr to either push or replace Alex Smith. And look, Mike Singletary just fired his offensive coordinator only a few days after publicly defending him and acting outraged that anyone would question whether Raye knew what he was doing (um, he didn't, duh).

Plus, they could've claimed Edwards and Singletary could have done the whole "just for depth" and "Alex is our starter" dance, only to put him in the game after Smith's second interception in the first quarter against the Falcons in Week 4.

***
The Cleveland Browns decision not to pursue Edwards isn't as odd, I suppose, although Jake Delhomme hasn't looked great when he's been healthy, and while Seneca Wallace is a Mike Holmgren favorite, outside of tossing a bomb past an out-of-place Eric Berry, he hasn't been that great (370 yards, two TDs and a pick in two games).

But the decision not to spend a roster spot on adding a potentially gimpy donkey to their stable of already ugly horses is understandable, except that unless Delhomme can stay healthy, Cleveland's one bad break away from putting McCoy under center and really slapping a postage stamp to the season.

***
An argument could be made that the Panthers need to at least make a run at Edwards as well, but he's really nothing more than Matt Moore sans familiarity with the team and coaching staff.

The bigger problem for Carolina might be that John Fox already regrets his blatantly panicked decision to put Jimmy Clausen under center after an 0-2 start that only got uglier in a home loss to Cincinnati.

The good news is that the Saints -- as shown by Atlanta plowing through them in the Bayou -- are vulnerable against the run, and if there's one thing the Panthers should do well, it's pound the rock. They haven't been great about it thus far, but that's because they're staring down stacked boxes on nearly every play as teams refuse to respect whoever's under center.

That could change this weekend -- weather won't be a factor (see: three fumbles by Jim-Jim), and if Clausen can take his progression blinders off, quit staring down his receiver every play, the Panthers could be primed for a "where did that come from oh right it's the matchup" upset. You heard it here first.

***
The Jaguars would actually be an ideal situation, at least for Edwards. He'd face relatively limited competition -- by all accounts, Jack Del Rio wants to replace David Garrard in the starting lineup, he just doesn't have the bodies to do it after Luke McCown went down with an injury ... immediately after replacing David Garrard .

And let's face it, that offensive line has been putrid thus far; putting Todd Bouman, who is either 18 or 45 years old and who has backed up big names like Kyle Boller, Jamie Martin, Gus Frerotte and Quinn Gray en route to being signed by the Jaguars FOUR DIFFERENT TIMES , won't end well.

***
The notion that Ben Roethlisberger might not start when he returns from suspension following the Steelers' bye in Week 5 has been tossed around in the media. Like, kind of a lot.

And Charlie Batch has been very good in replacing Ben, at least, you know, relative to what everyone expected from Charlie Freaking Batch. But let's not lose our minds just because we (read: you) kind of want to see Roethlisberger punished by karma and riding the pine. He's by far and away the best quarterback option for Pittsburgh, and Mike Tomlin is going to start him as soon as he's allowed to.

If the Steelers happen to be undefeated at that point in time, well, watch out NFL.

***
Quickly ...

- Peyton Hillis didn't just put the whole "Eric Mangini hates  Jerome Harrison" conspiracy theory to bed, he shoved about 15 Ambien in its mouth and then wrapped it in a Snuggie.

- Thomas Jones and Jamaal Charles, as much as I'd like to think so, aren't in a battle for a job. They're just two running backs with different style co-existing in a system that just so happens to make one of them less valuable. And the less valuable guy just happens to be Charles, who's more talented.

- The only awesome thing about drafting Kevin Kolb in fantasy leagues is that you had to pick up Michael Vick. That's worked out quite well.

- I really thought that Chan Gailey was trying to showcase Marshawn Lynch to increase his trade value. And even if he was, in the process, Lynch has just become the best running back in Buffalo (once again).

- Kevin Smith returns this week and Jahvid Best is injured ... it shouldn't matter, but that's what Wally Pip probably said too.

- Yeah, I'm really pumped about the "Garrett Hartley versus John Carney" lede in this column next week too, thanks for asking.

Posted on: September 23, 2010 6:32 pm
 

For the gambler in you

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Last week, I brought you some of my favorite weekly picks from the brains of whoever makes the prop bets for bodog.com (this is a pretty cool job, but man, that would be a really cool job).

This week, I’ve got a new batch. Maybe I should start a weekly feature called, “For the gambler in you.” How much you wanna bet that I’ll do that?

Will a team from Texas win Super Bowl XLV?

Yes 4/1

No 1/6

At 4/1, I might be inclined to put my money on that, though I don’t think it’ll happen. Wait, the San Antonio Spurs are eligible to play, right?

How many games will Kevin Kolb start from Week 4 onward in the 2010 NFL Regular Season?   
 
  

Over/Under 2

Too many possible factors to go with the under here. Vick could get injured, he could get benched, Andy Reid could change his mind again before Sunday.

Completion % - Jimmy Clausen (CAR)


Over/Under 54%

There are quite a few backup-QB-turned-starter-this-week prop bets, but this is a pretty good one. Until Clausen proves me wrong, I’d take the under. His first year playing at Notre Dame, it should be noted, he recorded a 56.3 completion percentage.

How many sacks will Clay Matthews record in the 2010 NFL regular season?          

Over/Under 20  

This is a tough one. I don’t think he’ll break the NFL record of 22.5, but I’d have a hard time putting him at the under as well. So, if I had to spell it out in a mathematical equation, maybe I’d say: 22.5>Matthews>20. 

Which of these NFL coaches will be fired first during the 2010 NFL regular season? 
         
Eric Mangini 3/2

John Fox 2/1

Wade Phillips 3/1

Brad Childress 5/1

I was asked this week if I thought Phillips would be fired mid-season, and I said I doubted it because I think the Cowboys will (somewhat) turn themselves around. But if they don’t – if they start 2-6 or something like that – I wouldn’t be terribly shocked for Jerry Jones to give Phillips the mid-season pink slip. So, I’d go with him. 


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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com