Why Bart Scott Was Hiding In Browns' Bathroom Until Ozzie Newsome Called
It's funny, yet sad, at the same time.
When retired linebacker Bart Scott was a free agent back in 2006, he was visiting the Cleveland Browns, who were interested in signing the former undrafted gem discovered by General Manager Ozzie Newsome.
Only thing was, Scott absolutely did not want to be a Brown. So, he resorted to unusual tactics when Cleveland expressed a desire to sign him.
Scott hid in a bathroom inside the Browns facility.
Wait, is this a serious story?
"I'm dead serious!" Scott said in the Bleacher Report video below.
While in the bathroom, Scott talked to Newsome on the phone, who said, "Where you at? … Get the hell out of there; we'll give you a deal," Scott recalled. "I said, 'Thank you, Jesus.'"
Here's Scott's explanation:
While in the Browns facility, Scott signed a three-year deal reportedly worth $13.5 million with the Ravens.
It makes sense that Scott would want to return to the team that had a winning pedigree and gave him his NFL shot. Interestingly, though, Scott also chose retirement and a CBS Sports TV gig over the Browns in 2013 after he was released by the New York Jets. A lingering toe injury was another factor in that decision.
It's probably no coincidence that this story emerges just a few days after Baltimore beat Cleveland with a walk-off kick-six.
Former Steeler Gives Love To Harbaugh, Pokes At Miami
Even though most pundits believe Baltimore will fall to Miami this week (see below), there's one person who believes in what Head Coach John Harbaugh is building.
And he just so happens to be a former enemy. It's retired Steelers safety Ryan Clark.
"They have a coach who has won big games, who has won a Super Bowl in Baltimore," wrote Clark. "I think he's trying to rally the troops and get them to understand this season isn't over, 'We are still building toward something.' I think Baltimore will go down to Miami and win."
While Harbaugh provides a stable foundation in Baltimore, Miami continued its trend of firing coaches midseason this year. The Dolphins front office let go of Head Coach Joe Philbin after a 1-3 start, parted ways with Defensive Coordinator Kevin Coyle four days later, then fired Offensive Coordinator Bill Lazor Monday.
Interim Head Coach Dan Campbell made the decisions to fire his two coordinators.
"The Dan Campbell mania is over there," Clark said. "Now you have to settle in and play football. And when you just start firing coaches week to week, trying to figure out a way, I know that you're lost. So I'm looking for the Baltimore Ravens to go down there as a *team *and get this win."
The Picks Are In: Ravens vs. Dolphins
There's an interesting divide this week.
Most of the local folks at The Baltimore Sun (six of seven) believe the Ravens will come up with their fourth victory in five consecutive games. Meanwhile, a large majority of national pundits (39 of 50) predict the Dolphins will win it.
Baltimore Sun: 6 of 7 panelists pick Ravens
"The Ravens finally are getting the ball to bounce their way and they've got a bunch of unheralded guys who showed in Cleveland that they've got something to prove. In this strange NFL season, 5-7 would seem almost respectable." – Peter Schmuck
ESPN: 11 of 13 panelists pick Dolphins
"It's simple for me on this one. Miami is at home, so I'm taking Miami." – Brian Dawkins
CBS Sports: 6 of 8 panelists pick Dolphins
"The Ravens are playing consecutive road games on a short week. That's a challenge. The* *Dolphins fired offensive coordinator Bill Lazor, which means they will go to more running this week. That will pay off against the Ravens. Dolphins take it." -- Pete Prisco
Fox Sports: 6 of 7 panelists pick Dolphins
"Miami's favored here, I know, but this Ravens team is playing with house money. No coaches' jobs are on the line, there's very little expected from these backups, and the team seems to be having fun -- just ask the Browns." -- Peter Schrager
NFL.com: 4 of 6 panelists pick Dolphins
"Can the Matt Schaub-to- Kamar Aiken connection pull it off again after the Ravens' win in Cleveland on Monday? Schaub to Crockett Gillmore? The more Schaub plays in Marc Trestman's offense, the comfier he'll get moving about outside of the Owings Mills QB room. T-minus three days to another Schaubian pick-six. But he can't hand too many gifts like that to a Dolphins team having a hard enough time scoring points on its own. … Thinking Miami's bad defense rebounds Sunday to force mistakes from all these young Ravens." -- Elliot Harrison
ProFootballTalk.com: 2 of 2 panelists pick Dolphins
"With most teams still having a plausible shot at the playoffs, the games between two teams that are done tend to stand out. The Dolphins should win this war of irrelevance, primarily because their starting quarterback doesn't have a habit of throwing pick-sixes." -- Mike Florio
Bleacher Report: 5 of 8 panelists pick Dolphins
"The irony of this? The Dolphins fired an offensive coordinator for throwing too much just before facing a Baltimore team that possesses one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL. Miami wins a game that both teams would be better served losing." -- Gary Davenport
SB Nation: 5 of 6 panelists pick Dolphins
Early Look At Ravens' 2016 Cap Space
Earlier this week, NFL Media's Albert Breer reported that the 2016 salary cap number is expected to end up between $147 and $153 million. He added that cap numbers given to clubs in December are traditionally low to help teams budget.
This year's cap was set at $143 million, so if the cap rises to $154 (a number many analysts think is a safe prediction), it will mark an $11 million increase.
Brian McFarland, the cap guru at Russell Street Report, crunched the numbers with the Ravens' contracts already on the books for next season, and he estimates the Ravens are only $364,947 under the projected 2016 cap.
Obviously, there is plenty of time to free up money to make moves this offseason and shore up positions of need, but there's a lot of work to be done. That includes negotiating a new deal with quarterback Joe Flacco.
"This is the (multi) million dollar decision and the timing is going to be a key factor in the team's ability to address its weaknesses," wrote McFarland. "Depending on the terms of a new deal, a Flacco restructure is likely to create around $3-7 million, which – along with other moves – will go a long way toward creating necessary breathing room for the team."
Marlon Brown Focused On Rehab, Not Slide Down Depth Chart
Even with the loss of Steve Smith Sr., snaps given to wide receiver Marlon Brown have been on the decline since the bye week. Both Chris Givens and Jeremy Butler have seen more time on offense lately, after Brown was the No. 3 receiver for the first eight weeks of the season.
Now, Brown faces a new challenge as he's dealing with a back injury that is preventing him from practicing and competing to get those snaps back.
Brown told The Sun's Jon Meoli that he is focused on his rehab and not his slide down the depth chart.
"Honestly, the only thing I can control is what I can control, that's how I look at it. I never look at all the excess things that are going on because I can't control those," Brown said. "The only thing I can control is MB, so that's all I kind of do, you know?"
Dolphins Mascot Hunts Ravens
Is it me? Or is this a little weird?
This is a video parody from 2013 that Russell Street Report dug up heading into the Dolphins matchup. Fins Productions put together a "Duck Dynasty" parody called "Dolphin Dynasty," in which the Miami mascot, T.D., goes hunting with a water gun for fake Ravens on an airboat.
T.D. was able to capture a couple Ravens in the video, but Baltimore went on to win the game that year.
"I never got into the Duck Dynasty thing, but I have to admit that this is pretty hilarious," wrote Russell Street Report.
Oh. I guess it's just me then.