It’s up to players to handle hype

Posted by Vic Carucci on June 29, 2012 – 6:47 pm

By Vic Carucci, Senior Editor

You’ve got questions and comments that you submit to the Browns’ official Facebook and Twitter pages. Here’s what I have to say about what you have to say:

D-ASH – Please don’t overly praise Trent Richardson. We don’t need another “decision” to deal with. He’ll get praise when he earns it.

D-Ash, I fully agree that praise must be earned and I go along with the idea that it’s always a little risky to hype up a player before he actually has played an NFL down. That can lead to all sorts of problems, the biggest of which is the player getting so caught up in praise that he loses his focus on doing all of the work necessary to be successful.

Another factor is the player’s mindset. How will he react to over-the-top praise? It’s fair to say that Trent Richardson has heard plenty of praise through his entire football life, especially during his time at Alabama and the weeks and months leading up to the draft when any number of people called him one of the best players (if not the best) to emerge from the college ranks in many years.

It’s understandable and acceptable that there is going to be a great deal of excitement among Browns fans and a fair amount of gushing by them and the media about Richardson. And it’s up to him to handle it. I believe the player should have the bulk of the responsibility to prevent it from going to his head rather than putting it on fans and media to keep their enthusiasm in check.

Handling praise and criticism is, in fact, a large part of what he is paid handsomely to do. 

THOMAS — Why does Vic refuse to criticize players? Also why are the receivers going to be better? Whenever people are asked they just say, “they’ll be better,” and please don’t simply say because of the QB, because the receivers struggled to get open, dropped easy passes and didn’t have the breakaway speed required to beat defenses.

Thomas, I don’t agree that I refuse to criticize players. It was pretty hard to be complementary of any aspect of a team that lost 12 games last season.

Now, if you’re looking for me to flat-out rip a player on the team, then, no, you probably aren’t going to read or hear that from me. But I’ll never hesitate to tell you when I don’t like something I see from a player or someone else.

As far as how the Browns’ receivers are going to improve, I don’t subscribe to the “they’ll-be-better-just-because” school of thought. I do need to see it before I believe it.

But I do believe that better quarterbacking will make the receivers better. Specifically, a quarterback who has enough accuracy and velocity to consistently make throws through those fast-closing windows in coverage. Specifically, a quarterback who throws a catchable ball, one that the receivers can grab in stride. Specifically, a quarterback such as Brandon Weeden.

I believe the addition of senior assistant coach Nolan Cromwell, who has extensive background as a receivers coach, will make the Browns’ receivers better.

And, although you probably won’t like this answer, but I simply can’t envision as many drops as there were last season because it was such a ridiculously high total and I refuse to believe it can happen two years in a row.

You want more reasons? The addition of speedy rookie Travis Benjamin, the noticeable improvement in physical conditioning of the incumbent receivers, the likely vast upgrade that Trent Richardson will bring to the running game.

LOUIS- What are the chances of us acquiring a veteran wide out before season starts? 

Slim to none, Louis.

I have no sense whatsoever that the Browns’ decision-makers share the popular public opinion that more help is needed at receiver.

They truly like the receivers they have. They truly believe that the incumbents will show improvement as the rest of the offense gets better. They truly believed that Travis Benjamin will provide the big-play dynamic that is needed.

MICHAEL — I will like whatever we do as long as we win. Football may well be a diversion from life and there are way more important things, but I am fed up with us being so consistently bad year in and year out. As Al Davis used to say, “Just win baby!”

You’re right, Michael.

In the NFL, winning isn’t an option. To use another quote, this one from the title of an excellent book about Bill Parcells when he was coaching the New York Giants, there are “no medals for trying.”

I believe the pieces are being put together to turn the Browns into far more pleasant diversion for you and other fans.

>>Be sure to tune in Monday through Friday, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. ET, for “Cleveland Browns Daily, Driven by Liberty Ford” on ESPN 850 WKNR or catch the live stream right here on

>>Have a question for “Cleveland Browns Daily, Driven by Liberty Ford”? Ask me at

Posted in Carucci's Call | 3 Comments »

3 Responses to “It’s up to players to handle hype”

  1. By Bill on Jun 30, 2012 | Reply


    I have been a Browns Fans for more years than I care to think about.
    I was very excited when the team announced that Coach Holgrem was being put in the front office.I knew good things were going to happen,I still believe that.
    But I think that everyone has passed too much of the blame for last year onto McCoy.Learning a new system,learning a new coach and having next to no off season had alot to do with it.Frankly I think that they moved to quickly to install the new systems,had they left the old system in place for last season I believe that we would have had a better win-loss record.But the past is just that.I look forward to this season with high hopes.GO BROWNS!!!!!!!

  2. By John on Jul 2, 2012 | Reply

    I have been a Browns fan for 35 yrs and I do have to agree with Vic fully.To many people blame McCoy for way to much sure he mad a couple of mistakes last yr but when it comes own to it the WR’s were dropping almost all their passes the OL was horrible injuries is simply a plague with the browns anymore and the list can keep going on and on.If you brought Brees,Brady,ect in to QB for the brouwns last yr the would have been on their butt’s alot to,but there is one thin that i can say that I love about McCoy “among other things” is that he is a tough kid,so why kick him to the curb because one in Cleveland there will always be a new QB every yr because 1 rookies are cheap and 2 they don’ want to pay out real money. This is the fans team and yes we do love our browns but if the team woud set up smething on the browns web site to atleast listen to what the fans have to say then maybe just maybe we”fans” just might be able to help out the team,but i forgot as Holgrem said and I quote “The fans love this team but we “the fans” don’t understand football.Now I take that to offense considering we pay his paycheck and way of life! I love how the browns say we love our fans and respect us then if you do maybe you should listen to all fans and not the ones that don’t make you mad or you just want to pick and say that you listen to us! Food for thought we can keep you in buissness or we can shut you down it is our choice not yours!I perfer the browns stay because I love the Browns but once someone get to much power they intend to abuse it.I do hope the browns turn a new corner this yr and continue to do so and I wish them the best. 1 more thing Iif I would ever leve the Browns “which I wouldnt” I would quit the NFL all around not go to another team.That’s how much I love the browns heck I was born to love them.GO BROWNS!

  3. By Justin on Jul 3, 2012 | Reply

    I think the fans are getting upset with the current regime for one reason. This is the first time that this organization has NOT done everything that the fans wanted them to do. If we really think about it, previous regimes did everything they could to cater to us as fans. They brought us Braylon Edwards, Kellen Winslow, Brady Quinn, Jeff Garcia, Jamaal Lewis, Trent Dilfer, among many others that we, the fans were screaming for! Where did all of these big name guys get us? NO WHERE. We can be upset all we want for the team not listening to our input, but our input has never really helped much anyway. When we didn’t get what we wanted, we head hunted everyone from the top down, and forced them out of Cleveland. H&H are standing tall and not giving in to our bullying, and for that I praise them. I believe that they will put together a strong team. Maybe not as good as they feel it will be this year, but soon enough the Cleveland faithful will finally get what we all deserve. A team to be proud of, and eventually a SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONSHIP! GO BROWNS!

Post a Comment