Thursday, February 9, 2017

News & views

News: The Browns release quarterback Josh McCown and cornerback Tramon Williams.

Views: Addition by subtraction.

McCown only clogged up the quarterbacks room and at 37 (he’ll be 38 in July), it’s time for him to move on and add one more destination tag to his luggage stash and then retire.

Williams was signed as a free agent after a half dozen decent seasons with Green Bay, but his best days are long gone and he contributed little to the cause in Cleveland. His days as a Brown do not belong in the Hall of Fond Memories.

McCown, the epitome of the journeyman quarterback, merely filled a void in the offensive structure of the team for a couple of seasons until the so-called franchise quarterback is identified and signed. His statistical contributions with Cleveland were 11 starts in two seasons with a 1-10 record.

That lone victory was a 33-30 overtime thriller in Baltimore in game five of the 2015 season when he threw for a career-best 457 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions, and completed 36 of his 51 passes.

His release immediately turns one’s attention to and further heats up rumors that the Browns have serious designs on New England quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. It also ignites notions that Robert Griffin III could be the next to depart in an effort to totally repopulate the quarterbacks room for the 2017 season.

That most likely will not happen because the club needs to keep The Third as insurance if efforts to obtain Garoppolo fall through. Rookies Cody Kessler and Kevin Hogan also return, but neither conjures up thoughts of winning football.

Williams, who swiped just two passes in his two seasons, was on the backside of his career when he arrived and saw action this season only because injuries racked the Cleveland secondary. With the emergence of Brien Boddy-Calhoun and Jamar Taylor, his departure will not be felt.

News: Browns claim local kid and former Ohio State free safety Tyvis Powell on waivers from Seattle.

Views: Can’t hurt.

The Bedford native, who went undrafted and signed as a free agent with the Seahawks last season, certainly has the size at 6-3, 210 pounds. That’s the kind of size the Seahawks like in their secondary, so placing him on waivers came as somewhat of a surprise.

The knock against Powell, who says he always wanted to be a Cleveland Brown, is that despite his size, he does not attack ball carriers. The scouting report labels him a “waist-bending head ducker into his tackles. Waits on running backs to get up on him rather that attacking downhill.”

One Big Ten Conference offensive assistant coach in that same scouting report said, “Our game plan was to run at him and away from (Vonn) Bell.”

As a pass defender, again according to the scouting report, Powell “lets deep ball responsibility get behind him when locking in on the quarterback.” Troubling for sure for a free safety, but very correctable.

He turns 23 years old in a week. He wants to play for his hometown team. Right now, that’s good enough for a team struggling to recover from a season that can’t be purged quickly enough from the memory bank.

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