Originally written March 26, 2012 on Waiting For Next Year:
The NFL owner’s meetings has been ripe with Browns talk today as Mary Kay Cabot talked to Tom Heckert. Everyone knows that the Browns will have to add a wide receiver and a running back at some point this off-season. Tom Heckert used his opportunity Monday to address that situation. We didn’t get the actual quote from Tom Heckert, but Cabot phrased it this way.
He also did not rule out the Browns signing former Bengals running back Cedric Benson at some point this offseason. Not on the frontburner, but possible.
You can choose to read that in two ways. Either the Browns are actually considering signing Cedric Benson to help carry the load at running back this year, or they desperately want people to think they have no interest in drafting Alabama runner Trent Richardson. I don’t find Cedric Benson to be an ideal fit for the Browns considering the mileage and baggage he is known to bring with him. At the same time, if he comes at a low price and the Browns believe in the leadership and culture they have in place, you could do a lot worse than having Cedric Benson available to carry the ball 250+ times this season. Benson’s yards per carry was 3.9 in 2011 as he broke 1,000 yards in 15 games for the Bengals. The troubling part is that his Wikipedia page has more entries under the “Legal Trouble” heading than it does in his “Professional career” heading. Benson was arrested on two alcohol-related charges in 2008 and added in “resisting” on one of them. In 2010 he was arrested for reportedly punching a bartender. Finally in 2011 he served five days in jail and served a one game NFL suspension on “assault” chargers involving a family member.

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