Tag Archives: Rex Grossman


Official Press Release From The Cleveland Browns on Roster Moves – 8-30-14

The team terminated the contracts of four veteran players including 12-year veteran, wide receiver Nate Burleson; linebackers Zac Diles and Jamal Westerman; and running back Chris Ogbonnaya.

Cornerback Isaiah Trufant was placed on injured reserve with a knee injury that forced him to miss three of the Browns’ four preseason games.

There were 15 players waived. The list includes: defensive backs Josh Aubrey and Leon McFadden, defensive linemen Calvin Barnett, Jacobbi McDaniel and Justin Staples; offensive linemen Reid Fragel, Garrett Gilkey, Donald Hawkins, Alex Parsons and Abasi Salimu; quarterback Connor Shaw; tight end/fullback MarQueis Gray; running back Dion Lewis; tight end Emmanuel Ogbuehi; and wide receiver Willie Snead.


The Browns 53-man roster includes:

Offense (23)

Quarterbacks (3): Brian Hoyer, Johnny Manziel, Rex Grossman; running backs (3) : Ben Tate, Terrance West, Isaiah Crowell, fullback (1): Ray Agnew; wide receivers (5):  Miles Austin, Andrew Hawkins, Travis Benjamin, Taylor Gabriel, Charles Johnson; tight ends (3): Jordan Cameron, Gary Barnidge, Jim Dray; offensive linemen (8): Joe Thomas, Alex Mack, John Greco, Mitchell Schwartz, Joel Bitonio, Paul McQuistan, Martin Wallace, Karim Barton.

Defense (27)

Defensive linemen (7): Desmond Bryant, Armonty Bryant, John Hughes, Ishmaa’ily Kitchen, Phil Taylor, Billy Winn, Ahtyba Rubin; linebackers (8): Karlos Dansby, Barkevious Mingo, Craig Robertson, Paul Kruger, Jabaal Sheard, Chris Kirksey, Tank Carder; Eric Martin; defensive backs (12): Joe Haden, Buster Skrine, Justin Gilbert, Aaron Berry, Pierre Desir, Robert Nelson, K’Waun Williams, Donte Whitner, Tashaun Gipson, Jim Leonhard, Johnson Bademosi, Jordan Poyer.

Specialists (3)

Kicker (1): Billy Cundiff; punter (1): Spencer Lanning; long snapper (1): Christian Yount.


Among the more notable aspects of the Browns’ 53-man roster are:

Twelve defensive backs. The Browns are exceptionally heavy at this position, but that’s not a surprise given the high premium that coach Mike Pettine places on the secondary in a defense that emphasizes pressure and press-man coverage.

“It’s a big part of the system, just with how it’s become such a passing league,” Pettine said. “You need to carry a high number of DBs, especially corners.”

Besides first-round draft pick Justin Gilbert and fourth-rounder Pierre Desir, two rookie free agents — K’Waun Williams and Robert Nelson — and veteran newcomer Aaron Berry join veterans Joe Haden, Buster Skrine at cornerback. The safeties include two newcomers, Donte Whitner and Jim Leonhard, along with Tashaun Gipson, Johnson Bademosi, and Jordan Poyer.

Five wide receivers. After the NFL announced its season-long suspension of Josh Gordon last Wednesday, there has been plenty of discussion about how the Browns would address this spot. One thing they aren’t doing, at least for now, is going long here.

They cut veteran Nate Burleson, who missed the first three season games of the preseason with an injured hamstring, was cut.

“Nate is a true professional and it was a difficult decision for us.” Pettine said. “Ultimately, his availability was a concern with all the time he missed and we liked what we saw in the other players at that position.”

Undrafted free agent Taylor Gabriel made the roster, along with Charles Johnson, who was acquired last year despite recovering from a major knee injury.

“Gabriel’s an explosive athlete, he’s very strong for his size (5-foot-8 and 172 pounds),” Pettine said. “He has the ability to get off the line against press, which a lot of times you don’t find with smaller guys. A lot of times, you have to put them off the ball or have him on the move (before the snap).”

The top two receivers are Miles Austin and Andrew Hawkins, along with incumbent return specialist Travis Benjamin, who made a strong comeback from a torn ACL he suffered last season.

Rex Grossman is the third quarterback behind Brian Hoyer and Johnny Manziel. Grossman, a 12-year NFL veteran, has the best understanding of the offense of coordinator Kyle Shanahan, for whom he played when Shanahan worked in the same capacity in Washington. Grossman demonstrated as much during his preseason debut with the Browns last Thursday night.

“Rex is a veteran, he’s played in this system, he’s good for the (other) guys in the (quarterback) room, and he also showed that he can still throw it,” Pettine said. “And that’s the most important thing. He can still play.”

A true fullback made the roster, something the Browns haven’t had since Lawrence Vickers’ final season on the team in 2010. Undrafted free agent Ray Agnew, a traditional fullback in every sense, is going to bring plenty of blocking muscle to help open holes for Ben Tate and Terrance West.

“Ray was another guy that I’d put in that category with Gabriel in the sense that if you watched how he handled himself, you’d never know he was a rookie, especially an undrafted one,” Pettine said. “But he fits our commitment to wanting to run the football, he fits that classic mold where he brings an air of toughness.”

It would be easy to assume that undrafted free agent Isiah Crowell forced his way onto the roster with his 102-yard rushing performance — including a 48-yard touchdown — against the Bears that easily ranked as the most dynamic showing of any player on the team this summer. However, the Browns used a larger body of work in deciding to keep Crowell over incumbents Chris Ogbonnaya and Dion Lewis, who returned from a season-ending broken leg last year and at one point seemingly had secured the third spot behind Tate and West.

“It wasn’t something where he was on the outside looking in and, all of a sudden, he had that big night,” Pettine said. “He had flashed at practice and he was a guy that we knew had that type of ability. But you still have to show it in games, and we had kind of earmarked (the Bears’) game as one where we were going to feature him a little bit more. And, to his credit, he went out and performed.”

Although the Browns made 21 transactions to reach the 53-man roster limit by Saturday’s deadline, that does not necessarily mean they are finished with making moves.

“I think the 53 is always going to be fluid, especially at the start of the season.” Pettine said. “Ray and his staff have done an outstanding job of keeping tabs on the league and I’m confident they will continue to make any moves that are necessary to give us the best possible 53.”


As the Browns head into their second preseason game against the Redskins, there are four big questions marks that I’m hoping to get answers to on Monday night in Washington. Here’s what they are…….

Johnny Manziel In Game Huddle



Dwyane Wade photo



As we told you a few weeks ago and is now being reported by the four letter network’s Marc  Stein, LeBron James and the Cavs will play in a Christmas day game against Dwyane Wade and the Heat in Miami. The NBA and Cavaliers full schedule will be announced on Wednesday night around 6pm.



As we also told you months ago, Rex Grossman would sign with the Browns and the free agent QB has. We pointed out to you then that this made so much sense because he played for Kyle Shanahan in Washington and Houston, knows his offense and can help teach it to Brian Hoyer and more importantly, to Johnny Manziel. think of it this way, Grossman is to Johnny Football, what Gary Danielson was to Bernie Kosar. Grossman by the way, will wear #3.

Johnny Manziel In Game Huddle

As far as who the Browns starting QB will be in game #1 at Pittsburgh on Sunday, September 7th? Head coach Mike Pettine said he’d like to name that starter before the team’s third preseason game, preferably on their off day on Thursday, August 21st. Both Brian Hoyer and Johnny Manziel will take snaps with the first team offense in their second preseason game on Monday night in Washington. Here’s hoping one of the two QB’s helps the offense score a touchdown, something they didn’t do against Detroit and in their “Family Night” scrimmage.



Not a good time to have three key players hurt if you’re the Indians.

NICK SWISHER (right knee soreness): Was examined by Dr. Rick Parker yesterday at the Cleveland Clinic after recurrence of right knee pain.  Currently gathering more information and seeking additional opinions on present condition before diagnosis and plan of care are administered.

DAVID MURPHY (right oblique strain): MRI yesterday confirmed a strained right oblique. Expected to return to Major League game action in 4-to-5 weeks.

MICHAEL BOURN (left hamstring strain): Currently tolerating planned rehab assignment without issue. Was scheduled for 9.0 innings Tuesday in AAA Columbus.



Raekwon McMillian OSU LBOhio State rookies wear black stripes on their helmets  during training camp until they display actions and efforts that prove they understand the Ohio State culture on the field of “4-to-6 seconds” and go as hard as you can from “point A to point B.” Once they show they understand that, they then have their black stripes removed. It should come as no surprise that the first two rookies to have the black stripe removed from their helmet were highly touted linebacker #5 Raekwon McMillan and running back Curtis Samuel.


O – H – I – O  HOOPS

Final Four 023

Ohio State’s December 2nd matchup at Louisville in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge is set for a 9:30pm tip from the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky. The game, one of 14 played during the three-day event, will be televised on ESPN.   In his career Thad Matta has a 6-4 record in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge and has won five of the last six games in the event.




The Cleveland Gladiators, led by head coach Steve Thonn and quarterback Shane Austin will host Arena Bowl 27 at Quicken Loans Arena on Saturday, August 23rd at 8pm. The Gladiators (19-1) play the Arizona Rattlers (17-3) for the Arena League Championship! Austin, pictured right, threw 7 touchdown passes in the Conference Championship game to beat Orlando and advance Cleveland to the title game.


Mike Pettine Game Sideline PhotoOn signing QB Rex Grossman:

“We’re always going to be in a situation where if we feel like we can make our roster better, we’ll make that move. He’s a guy that’s very familiar with (offensive coordinator) Kyle (Shanahan’s) system. We appreciate what (QB) Tyler (Thigpen) did for us, but we just felt like we wanted to get Rex in here and just see where he’s at and what he can do.”


On why the Browns didn’t go after Grossman to begin with:

“I’m not going to get into the specifics of the ‘why’ behind stuff. There are a lot of factors involved. We wanted to give Tyler an opportunity. We did and we felt it was time to go ahead and take a look at Rex”.


On if the Browns will keep three QBs on the roster:

“I haven’t gotten to that yet. I think it will also depend on where we are with the rest of the roster – if you get a guy that you absolutely want to keep. (QB) Connor Shaw will get some time as we go on most likely in the fourth game so we can see where he is in a game setting. You have options. OK, do you keep your third quarterback on the practice squad, or is he a guy that’s schooled up and then he’s on the street or do you keep him on the 53? You have some choices.”


On if he views Grossman as a personal mentor to QB Johnny Manziel on this offense:

“I don’t think so. I think he’ll help the whole room, not just Johnny. It’s a guy who I think has been in it now. This will maybe be his sixth year; I don’t know the exact number. I think he’ll help that whole room just as far as the stuff that he’s gone through with a lot of the plays. He knows the system as well as he does, and he’ll be able to give them a quarterback’s perspective instead of just the coaches’ perspective.”


On if part of it is that the other QBs aren’t far enough along and they need a guy like that:

“No, absolutely not.”


On if there’s a difference between what QB Brian Hoyer brings since he’s never been a full-time starter than what Grossman brings:

“Brian is in a unique situation. He does have years in the league, but it’s hard to put that veteran label on him because he doesn’t have that many career starts. In some aspects, he is a veteran because he’s been around for so long in the league, but he’s closer to being a rookie just as far as the number of snaps he’s taken in live game situations.”


On if this makes Hoyer expendable:

“No, absolutely not.”


On TE MarQueis Gray being listed as a TE rather than FB:

“No, he’s really both. He’s bounced back and forth. When (TE) Jordan (Cameron) got hurt, he went back and took some reps there. He was kind of split in practice between tight end and fullback, and we’re very pleased with the progress of (FB) Ray Agnew. He’s playing well. He’s more of a traditional fullback. That just opens up our options of what we can do down the road.”



On if offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan told him that Grossman is a great mentor and locker room guy:

“He is. Tyler was a lot like that, too. That’s why it was a difficult thing, but Rex kind of has that presence as well. He’s functioned well when he’s been out there for Kyle, but at the same time, he’s a good presence in the locker room and more importantly in the quarterback room.”


On if he’s decided who’s starting at quarterback against Washington yet:

“No, we’re going to make that decision on the off-day.”


On who has stood out among the younger WRs:

“I think (WR Taylor) Gabriel has shown up. He’s a guy who was nicked up in the spring a little bit, and we never really got a chance to evaluate him. He’s shown that it’s not too big for him – that he’s not afraid to go up there against (DB) Joe Haden or (DB Donte) Whitner or any of those guys. He’s not afraid of a challenge. He won’t back down. (WR) Willie Snead has flashed some production for us. He’s done some good things – did well in the scrimmage. I think that (WR) Charles Johnson is starting to get a little more consistent. I think in the beginning, he was a little inconsistent. He’s starting to show improvement. He made a nice catch over the middle today.”


On what he specifically likes about Agnew:

“There’s a toughness element with him that he brings. He’s not going to back down to anybody. We did a half-line drill today. He had a lot of kick-out blocks, and he wasn’t afraid to stick his face in there against our guys on defense. His ability to run the ball in short yardage – I think he’s shown that ability as well. He’s been solid out of the backfield catching the ball. You can do some things with a traditional fullback, but again, it’s all going to come down to the roster decisions at the end and how we want that group to look, whether it’s four tight ends, a fullback, Gray bouncing back and forth. Those are all questions we’ll have to answer.”


On if he looks back and chuckles about the interview that quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains did with the Arkansas radio station about drafting Manziel:

“He paid his penance for that. We made him wear a visor that said, ‘I’m a dummy,’ for a day during the spring at the walkthrough and took a picture of it and put it up in a team meeting. He learned a valuable lesson. Wherever you think you are, it’s comfortable and it’s back home and there’s a small radio station with not that many listeners, not too many things are sacred nowadays. Everything is going to get out. I think he learned from it. We laughed about it. He came to me today and warned me he was doing media.


On if he’s serious about the visor:

“Yeah, it’s hanging in his office right now. He’s waiting for somebody else to screw up so he can pass it on to somebody else.”


On if he’s on track to name a starter by the third preseason game:

“We’re on schedule. I think we’re on schedule.”


On what he meant yesterday when he said Manziel has to earn the start in the second preseason game:

“Johnny’s going to get reps with the ones. Just to me, the factor of starting the game I think is a little bit overblown in this situation because we’re going to try to balance the reps with the ones in the game. I don’t think it was anything. Brian came in ahead. It’s a little overrated (trotting) out there for the first time.”


On if he thinks there’s enough first team reps in the second preseason game through the first half where if Hoyer plays the first quarter, Manziel can still get that really good work in the second quarter:

“I don’t know if we’ll do it by quarters. We want to make sure they’re both getting reps. We haven’t decided on how to do it. We’ll see when we meet on the off-day. I think there are a lot of options on the table I have to get that sorted out – how we want to do it.”


On if it will be by series:

“It could be, but it’s hard to get into rhythm if it is by series. That will be one of the things we’ll discuss.”


On how he thinks WR Miles Austin has played:

“I think we’re very pleased. I think he’s done a great job off the field taking care of his body. We’ve monitored his reps. I think he feels good where he is right now physically. I think (strength and conditioning) Coach (Paul) Ricci and (head athletic trainer) Joe Sheehan feel good as well. It’s something where we’ll continue to keep an eye on him. He’s a veteran guy. He’ll know the system. If we have to give him a day off during the season, we’ve had guys on those types of plans before. The biggest thing will be making sure he’s available on Sunday.”


On if the game in Detroit shattering the rating record for an NFL Network program was because it was his first game or because it was Manziel’s first game:

“My first game. Absolutely (laughter). It’s not a surprise to hear that. I think the phenomenon still surprises all of us. We want attention on this team because we’re a good football team and we’re winning games. It’s nice to have the media attention here, but we want to get to the point where it’s for the right reasons.”


On how OL Joel Bitonio looked to him on the Detroit game film:

“He was good. He made some rookie mistakes, but I think if you asked him, he’d feel pretty good about the performance getting that first one under his belt going against some pretty good defensive tackles. He certainly did not look out of place there.”


On if he expects DB Justin Gilbert to play tomorrow:

“I do. He should practice tomorrow. He did some light individual work today. He should practice tomorrow.”


On how important it is for him to get some live reps in:

“He needs to play. It’s not just that position; it’s all of them. Like I’ve said before, there’s no substitute for live game repetitions. You can practice all you want, walk through all you want, but you’ve got to play. Until you can get out there and kind of see how guys react, you’re never going to know.”


On if WR Nate Burleson is running out of time to show them something:

“He’s injured so it’s tough now to get a true evaluation. We felt good about where he was before he got nicked up so hopefully we can get him back there soon. We’re hopeful that it can be later this week.”


On what he’s seen from FB Chris Ogbonnaya and where he fits:

“His strength I think, is his versatility. He can play the fullback. I think it comes more into play when you trim the roster all the way down and you only have a limited number of guys on offense and you need a fullback and you need a third-down back and you need a guy that can get you out of a game at tailback. He’s pretty good on special teams for (special teams coordinator) Chris Tabor as well. I think that the versatility is one of the reasons why he’s been able to stick in this league for so long.”


On how important it is for him to stay true to the depth chart when he picks starters for Monday’s game:

“I don’t know if I can just answer that until we sit down with everybody involved in the decision on the off-day. We’re all going to have an opinion on how we want to handle it, but it’s not going to be anything earth shattering. The bottom line coming out of the game is that they both should get close to equal reps with the ones no matter who starts.”


On if he plans to do what New York Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan did and switch spots with a member of the media:

“No, not happening. Who did he pick? That’s what I want to know.”


On Ryan switching spots with ESPN New York writer Rich Cimini:

“If I had to bet, that would have been who I bet money on.”


On if the competition today was just one play at the end:

“Yeah, it was one play – fourth and one, game on the line.


On if DL Desmond Bryant has any sort of serious injury:

“No. We just kind of bumped up his scheduled day off. He’s got something that’s just bugging him a little bit. He’s going to get it checked out today. It’s nothing major. We just bumped up his day off so he could get evaluated.”


Roda Report: Browns Cheerleaders, Bortles Not Ready, Adam Silver’s Statement

 If you missed Wednesday’s “Roda Report” with Andy Baskin & Jeff Phelps on 92.3 The Fan you can listen to it right here –http://cbsloc.al/1o3Oj6g