From my recent trip across the internet message boards it looks like Browns fans are split on the Kellen Winslow trade. Now that the previously undisclosed draft picks have been disclosed to be a 2009 second rounder and a 2010 5th rounder, I'll give my take on the first big move of the new era. And that take is overwhelming support of the move.
Honestly, I think anyone who is against this trade is letting there emotions get in the way of reason. There are two main concerns about this trade. One is that people feel Winslow is our best player and trading him is a sure sign of rebuilding. Two is that Brady Quinn is a young "dink and dunk" passer who needs a great tight end like Winslow to be effective. Let me explain why both of these opinions are incorrect.
First, trading Winslow does NOT mean we are rebuilding. Sure he is the best receiving tight end on the planet. Yet he still managed to drop Quinn's 4th down, game ending pass versus Denver just as if he was any other Browns receiver. Come to think of it, he also dropped a touchdown pass from Quinn against San Francisco in 2007. Winslow's one great ability, to catch passes, is therefore not perfect. And for every drive that Winslow does extend with a great grab, he repeatedly stalls another one with mental errors. I can't count the number of times I lost my voice screaming at the television following a personal foul or false start on Winslow. Not to mention his little problems blocking and staying healthy.
Then there is the depth at tight end on this roster. Steve Heiden could be starting almost anywhere in the league. He seemed more than adequate against the New York Football Giants last season when Winslow was in the hospital. Also, last season we drafted arguably the top receiving tight end in college, Martin Rucker. The drop in talent at tight end will not be noticed in the win-loss column next year.
And for those who think Quinn can only dink and dunk, I say to you that you only think that because you watch DA play, and the only thing he could do was heave it long. If the deep ball is there, Quinn will throw it up and give our guy a chance to make the play. But a qb has to be able to move the chains with long drives to give a defense the chance to rest. Just because Quinn can do something DA couldn't, throw with touch and accuracy to a receiver, doesn't mean it's a bad thing. But I digress. The point of this paragraph was supposed to be that Quinn doesn't need Winslow. As stated above, Heiden is a very gifted tight end and I am fully confident that he will be more than able to fill Winslow's shoes.
This team has too many holes. To trade from a position of strength to acquire assets to fill the weaknesses is exactly what a good GM should do. Winslow's trade value is higher than it will ever be. Obviously ManKok learned from the mistake of the Savage regime when it failed to get value for DA when it had the chance. On the Tampa Bay message boards, many posts indicated there would be hell to pay if the Bucs gave up more than a 3rd or a 4th rounder. To get a second and a fifth rounder for this injury prone, penalty prone, malcontent is a steal. The move does not represent a complete rebuild. It is a way to fill the holes on this roster by getting rid of a guy who is injured half his career and is replaceable on the roster.
Now the daunting task of convincing Mr. Rogers to shut up and play ball lies ahead...
PS: I am stunned by the results of the current CMCR poll. The results should have been 100% for trading LeBron for Kobe, Gasol, and Bynum. These are two legit all-star centers and the man LeBron refers to as the best player on the planet. Please, loyal readers, explain to me how you could vote for anything else.
Until next time this is Barry Lakin sayin all the world is schlach.