Browns' OTA boycotts will be business as usual

Reports out of Cleveland today state that a group of players — restricted free agents — will bypass the team’s voluntary OTA sessions. Our own Michael Lombardi commented on this in today’s Diner Morning News, and the opinion here is the same.

Why? Because no one wins jobs in the spring and no one earns a new contract in the spring. You want to win a job or impress the coaching staff, do it in August at camp, in the preseason games and show us the production that should warrant you a new deal in the regular season.

It is the same as all of these reports about players showing up in minicamp, making plays all over the field and looking like they are in great shape. Really? That is what you are supposed to do in minicamp, and that is why we see players every offseason, guys who blow up minicamp practice, but suddenly vanish once the pads are on.

Minicamp All-Americans is what we used to call them.

Yes, it will be odd in Cleveland without running back Jerome Harrison in OTA practices, but that’s about it. The players in that locker room understand that the business side of this league can cause a player to boycott voluntary activities.

Training camp? Now, that is a different story, but we aren’t close to that discussion yet when it comes to these players in Cleveland. Let them act as no-shows for now, and let them start the standoff process with the front office.

Maybe it gets them a new deal, maybe not.

However, let’s be realistic here. No one is going to win the Super Bowl next week in the NFL. Eric Mangini will still coach and Mike Holmgren will still run the team. I agree that OTA’s are important to the long-term development of a team in any given season, but August is when no-shows matter.

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