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Brown's Turning Point

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Brown's Turning Point

Postby slowkidz » Thu Jul 24, 2003 10:27 am

Courtney Brown at turning point
Steve King
The Chronicle-Telegram
BEREA - Browns right defensive end Courtney Brown
doesn't talk much to the media. And on those rare
occasions when he does, he doesn't really say
much.
That's not good or bad. It's just the way "The
Quiet Storm" is, and always has been.
But none of that really matters anymore. Brown
has reached the point of his career where,
regardless of what he says or doesn't say, his
play on the field has to start doing the talking.
And it had better say volumes.
"This is the year that Courtney has to produce,"
Browns left end Kenard Lang said Wednesday as
training camp continued for rookies. "If you
don't produce, your boss is going to get on your
butt.
"I mean, he was the No. 1 overall pick in the
draft (in 2000). When you're the No. 1 overall
pick, they expect you to start producing the next
day.
"But Courtney is not one of these guys who has
blinders on and is oblivious to everything going
on around him. He knows what people are saying.
He knows the deal."
The deal is this: Brown has done little in his
first three NFL seasons - just 11 career sacks.
Then there are the injuries. After going through
Penn State and even high school with nothing more
than a dislocated thumb, he has had all kinds of
problems staying healthy in the pros. In the last
two years, he's been plagued by ankle and knee
problems and has missed half of the 32
regular-season games.
Brown continues to face his most serious health
issue as he tries to come back from microfracture
left knee surgery near the end of last season.
It's a serious procedure from which some players,
such as former Browns left tackle Roman Oben and
future Hall of Fame defensive end Bruce Smith,
recover, and others do not.
The injury traces back to the New Orleans game
Nov. 24, when Brown fell hard onto the Superdome
artificial turf and suffered what was initially
thought to be a bruised knee. He returned to play
the next week against Carolina, but then he sat
out the last four weeks and was eventually placed
onto the injured reserve list.
Brown had the surgery Dec. 19.
"It was tough being hurt and sitting out," Brown
said. "I've been playing football for a long
time. I'm used to being out there.
"When it first happened, I knew something was
wrong but I didn't really know what it was until
they did more tests. I didn't know how serious it
was going to turn out to be.
"Injuries are part of the game. Unfortunately,
I've had a few injuries the last couple of years.
You never expect them to happen, but they
happen."
Now it's year No. 4 of Brown's career, and the
club is still waiting for him to start playing
like the franchise defensive player he was
labeled to be when the Browns chose him over his
Penn State teammate, linebacker LaVar Arrington.
But first Brown has to be able to return to the
field. He is one of the veterans coming off
injuries who is attending these first three days
of camp with the rookies. He stands on the
sidelines in full uniform, not doing much more
than watching and waiting.
The waiting could be over today. This will be a
key moment in Brown's recovery as he will undergo
his physical. That will determine what he can do
when the veterans begin practicing Friday.
"I feel pretty good," Brown said. "I'm ready for
camp.
"I'll be practicing by the end of this week. I'll
be out there for everything.
"I feel pretty quick, but that's in drills. When
the full contact starts, we'll see how quick I
am."
The Browns hope Brown is totally healthy and, as
he says, "ready to roll," ASAP. A defense that
struggled last season, and has a ton of new faces
on it, needs all the help it can get.
"Without Courtney, our defense is like an 80
percent. With him, it's a 95," Lang said. "He's
one of the guys who is a complete player. He's
strong and fast. He can play the run, and he can
rush the passer.
"If he stays healthy, he's going to have a big
year. I know he's tired of hearing that, but
that's the way it is.
"I have faith in Courtney that he's going to be
able to do it. I'm going to go around with a
Courtney Brown badge. I'm a groupie.
"I played with Bruce Smith (in Washington), and
there's no question in mind that Courtney, if he
is able to stay healthy, can get to Bruce's
level."
The clock is ticking.
"I have high expectations for myself, and I
expect to hit those expectations this year,"
Brown said.
And if he does, then he and the Browns will
finally heave a sigh of relief and point to his
play as the reason why they drafted him in the
first place.
But if he doesn't, then the Browns could be
forced to turn the page on the Courtney Brown
era. After all, coach Butch Davis and his crew
weren't the ones who drafted Brown, so it's
really no skin off their backs if they eventually
have to pull the plug on him and cut the
organization's losses.
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Postby Homeless » Thu Jul 24, 2003 11:35 am

Browns Brown, Brown, Browns

The above post holds the record for the amount of times you can see the word Brown or Browns.
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