Found February 18, 2012 on Waiting For Next Year:

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McShay says Browns will have to trade up for RGIII: “The Cleveland Browns have the fourth overall pick, but that won’t be high enough to draft Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III, ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay said in a conference call Thursday.

He believes the Browns must trade up to the No. 2 pick if they want to select the Heisman Trophy winner. And, if Cleveland doesn’t do it, McShay expects another team to leapfrog the Browns for RG3.

“I think he’s every bit worth the [No. 2] pick,” McShay said. “I’ve got him as the third prospect overall in this class, and I think that if the Browns want him, they need to move up and get him. I’ll be surprised if he lasts until four, and I’ll be even surprised if he gets to No. 3 because I think that No. 2 pick is up for public auction. I think the Rams are going to get a good deal to move back and can still get a player they want at tackle or wide receiver. And if it’s not Cleveland, then it’s probably going to be Washington [at No. 6] right behind them leapfrogging Cleveland to get up to No. 2.”

McShay said the Browns might be able to trade the fourth overall pick and their second-rounder (No. 37) to the Rams in exchange for the No. 2 selection. But, according to the draft value chart, the Browns would have to trade both their first-round picks (Nos. 4 and 22 overall) and their sixth-rounder to the Rams to move up to No. 2.” [ESPN / Jamison Hensley

Heat Index guys play Fact or Fiction on the chances of a Cavs return changing since LeBron’s last visit:

“Haberstroh: Fact. It seems like LeBron’s sentiment was calculated, but you can’t deny that he has mended some fences this season. It won’t be open arms, but they won’t be closed, either.

Windhorst: Fiction. A few things happened. One was LeBron spent months at home over the offseason. Two, while he was home he saw how the Cleveland fans welcomed former nemesis Jim Thome with open arms 10 years after he bolted town in free agency in his prime. Finally, the Cavs drafted Kyrie Irving and Tristan Thompson, two friends of James. But the chances of a return are still where we left them.

Wallace: Fiction. How could we seriously know? There were some who couldn’t envision LeBron leaving Cleveland until he was already out of the door. I’m done predicting the future with these guys. We’re not privy to their real agendas. I do know this: Zydrunas Ilgauskas quietly went back to the Cavs after some questioned his loyalty (on a much smaller scale) for following LeBron to Miami. So LeBron is right in one sense. Anything’s possible.”  [ESPN / Heat Index]

OSU / Michigan tonight: “After the loss to Michigan State last weekend, there was a lot of talk among the Buckeye players about selfishness and not playing as a team. In fact, Jared Sullinger referred to the team as a bunch of “spoiled brats”. Playing on the road in the Big Ten is extremely difficult, and it tends to bring a team together. Such was the case for OSU on Tuesday against Minnesota.

The Buckeyes dished out 15 assists against only 9 turnovers, led by Aaron Craft and Will Buford with 5 dimes apiece. Minnesota actually outshot Ohio State from the field, but OSU made up for it at the line, hitting 78% (22/28) there while the Gophers made only 65% (15/23). They also held Minny to 5/20 from 3-point land.

Against Michigan, OSU will need to keep an eye on the perimeter of course, but they also need to beware of the drive. UM’s Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. are especially dangerous if they get the first step on you and beat the defender into the lane. Not only does that lead to many layups and trips to the foul line, but it draws help from other defenders, leading to open shots for the likes of Douglass, Smotrycz, and Novak.” [Eleven Warriors / Joe Beale]

More thoughts on a LeBron return to CLE:  ”There’s really nothing anybody can do at this point either. To be completely honest, if he somehow came back next season after failing to win again this year in Miami to team up with Kyrie Irving in some fantasy universe still yet to be discovered by Russian spacecraft, I’d get over myself pretty quick. I can’t lie. It could be something like him saying I really messed up, you guys, I’m sorry. I can’t actually win without you, Northeast, Ohio. I made all that stuff up about hating Cleveland growing up too, and I forced my way out of that deal I signed in Miami because I needed to come back here.  Now let’s finish what we started, and I momentarily quit because I was young and afraid of failure, together all over again.

None of that was at all what he was talking about yesterday though, when he suggested he’d like to come back here one day. He was talking about four or five years from now, when his headband had finally receded miles away from his forehead. After D-Wade and the Bostrich had helped win at least one title, and maybe a few. He said it, I think, because he sensed the fact that everybody around here was finally thinking the same way I thought I was yesterday morning. He realized we were all getting over it. He realized we were all getting over him. He understood that this is a Point Guard League, and his old team now employs the third best player at that position. As a nineteen year-old. Something for as great as he was, is, and always will be as a player, he couldn’t say he was quite yet at nineteen with respect to his small forward counterparts.” [Stepien Rules]


Report: Browns to place franchise tag on LB Jackson

The Cleveland Browns will place the franchise tag on lineback D'Qwell Jackson if they're unable to sign him to a long-term deal, according to the Plain Dealer of Cleveland.Jackson would receive approximately $8.8 million under the franchise tag, which would almost double his $4.5 million salary from 2011.The 28-year-old is reportedly seeking a five-year deal. Jackson recorded...

Browns' free agent Jackson a priority to re-sign

Draft day strategy employed by general manager Tom Heckert his first two years on the job has set the defense up to be the strength of the Browns. Heckert used the first two picks in 2010 on cornerback Joe Haden and safety T.J. Ward and his first two picks on defensive tackle Phil Taylor and end Jabaal Sheard last year. Would Heckert dare take a defensive player with his first...

Browns to franchise D’Qwell Jackson, if deal can’t get done

According to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer, the Cleveland Browns will place the franchise tag on linebacker D’Qwell Jackson if they’re unable to get a multi-year contract worked out. The 28 year-old Jackson recorded a career high 158 tackles in 2011 to go along with 3.5 sacks and 1 interception.  

Movin’ Up: Browns

I'm coming to save the Browns T... Rumors are floating around that the Cleveland Browns are looking to move up in the draft and grab RGIII to be their franchise QB.  Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer has a good pulse on the Browns and has reported the Browns interest in Griffin. “If the Browns determine at the Combine next week and maybe through one or two...

Tom Heckert’s Evaluation

Two years - and two drafts - into his job as the Cleveland Browns' general manager, is Tom Heckert finally the answer to the team's GM woes? Or is it too early in his tenure to judge?

Cleveland Browns will tag D'Qwell Jackson if necessary

(source feed provided no summary content for this entry)

Report: Browns to tag LB Jackson barring deal

Middle linebacker D'Qwell Jackson will get the franchise tag if the Cleveland Browns are unable to sign him to a multi-year deal, a league source told the Cleveland Plain Dealer on Friday.

Draft Lab: Back 7 and Final Thoughts

ESPN’s Todd McShay and Mel Kiper concluded their video segment Draft Lab with a look at linebackers, defensive backs and some players who are risk or reward picks. Here are the videos:    
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