Tuesday, March 14, 2006

You sure you want
to be "That Guy" in Cleveland?

So Cleveland native and NFL Pro Bowler LeCharles Bentley wants to be "That Guy", which is very dangerous now that he has signed a free-agent contract with the Browns. As various Cleveland "That Guys" have learned over the years, being "That Guy" in Cleveland is kinda like being "Extra Counselor" in a Friday the 13th movie. You really don't want that title, because doom awaits.

But Bentley welcomes the challenge:

"This is my ultimate dream. Every day, I wished this could've happened. This is where my roots are and where I want to blossom… This is absolutely a dream come
true. This is it for me right here. Now I can die happy... I grew up watching Bernie Kosar and Webster Slaughter. I idolized those guys. I want to be that guy. I feel right now I'm going to be that guy."
Be careful, LeCharles. In Cleveland, "That Guy" ends up throwing an interception into the end zone in the playoffs with the team in field-goal range. In Cleveland, "That Guy" fumbles the ball on the 1-yard line with seconds to go when trying to tie the game. In Cleveland, "That Guy" gives up a game-tying sacrifice fly to friggin' Craig Counsell in the ninth inning of Game 7 of the World Series. In Cleveland, "That Guy" goes flying over the handlebars of his motorcycle. Even Lebron James, the "That Guy" of "That Guys" can't do much more than make the Cavs a decent team without help.

You'd think that a guy who went to a Catholic high school would know that bad things happen to good "That Guys" in Cleveland. Still, LeCharles Bentley is here, along with two other Cleveland natives who you'd think would know better, Joe Jurevicius and Dave Zastudil. Along with free agents Ted Washington and Kevin Shaffer, and with the possible signing of Willie McGinist and others on the horizon, Browns fans haven't been this excited since the team covered the point spread five straight times in 2002.

Someone who doesn't want to be "That Guy", Antonio Bryant, was so afraid of what happens to "That Guy" in Cleveland that he signed with the 49ers in order to catch passes from a guy who has thrown one TD pass and 11 interceptions in his career.

So the Browns landed Jurevicius to help replace Bryant, though they're really counting on previous "That Guys" Braylon Edwards and Kellen Winslow to make up for Bryant's team-leading 69 catches. Of course, being recent "That Guys" bought Edwards a ripped-up knee and Winslow the flight over his motorcycle's handlebars.

As if LeCharles didn't have enough problems in New Orleans what with Hurricane Katrina and all. If he thought that was tough to deal with, wait til he tries to become "That Guy" in Cleveland.


Anonymous said...
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Hornless Rhino said...

I thought I was as bad as it got in terms of being a bitter, cynical Cleveland sports fan.

Then I found your website, where the glass isn't just half empty, but is lying shattered in a million pieces on the floor.

Frankly, your negative attitude impresses the hell out of me. Nice job.