John Dorsey: “Teams win in the fall. They do not win in March”

Browns GM says there's still work for him to do following huge offseason haul

Daryl Ruiter
March 14, 2019 - 4:11 pm

© Ben Fontana-92.3 The Fan

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Cleveland, OH (92.3 The Fan) – After pulling off arguably the biggest trade in Cleveland Browns history Tuesday night, general manager John Dorsey only had one thing on his mind – get home to see his wife and two kids as quickly as possible.

The excitement that has followed since Dorsey acquired Odell Beckham Jr. from the Giants has been overwhelming, but he’s had no time to revel in it, or the expectations.

“Expectations, I hear a lot about that, but I know this – good football teams, they win in the fall,” Dorsey said Thursday on a conference call discussing the team’s recent moves. “What we have done is we have added some talent. Now, the chemistry part has to take over with it. Teams win in the fall. They do not win in March.”

In addition to Beckham, Dorsey added Pro Bowl defensive end Olivier Vernon – also acquired from the Giants – and signed defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, who brings 23.5 career sacks, 76 QB hits and 49 tackles for loss in six seasons with him, to help Myles Garrett and anchor the defensive line.

 “The foundation for a football team is offensive and defensive line,” Dorsey said. “You can’t have enough talented football players on your team, especially on the defensive line. Having the ability to acquire these types of players will help us be a better defense moving forward.”

That’s quite a splash made for a GM that said two weeks ago he didn’t think the Browns were ready to go for it or all in on a big-name player.

“With the addition of certain players that we have acquired, I think we will be competitive and we will begin to try to be competitive in the AFC North,” Dorsey said.

Dorsey denied the signing of Richardson made it easier to part with the 17th pick in the draft and facilitate the trade for Beckham.

“Not necessarily,” Dorsey said. “I think Sheldon is a really fine football player, especially from the interior part of the line. I think in today’s football, if you can have an interior defensive lineman who can apply pressure on the quarterback, that is all you can ask for. That is the way the game is kind of going.”

By trading right guard Kevin Zeitler to New York, Dorsey created a spot for Austin Corbett, his top second-round selection a year ago, much like he did when he dealt Carlos Hyde to make way for Nick Chubb in the middle of last season.

“The organizations selected Austin Corbett at 33rd overall for a reason because we feel he is a good football player,” Dorsey said. “By no means do you anoint him right now, but you go into training camp and compete. At the end of the day, I’m sure Freddie is going to put the five best offensive linemen out there on the field. Austin has done a really nice job.”

Dorsey has two holes defensively that need filled – linebacker and strong safety.

He might have a solution for one of them already on the team.

“I think Genard Avery played at a really nice level last year,” Dorsey said. “What you are going to do is explore every opportunity. If a good player comes about, you will again try to add competition because you can’t have enough competition at all spots, even at the linebacker spot. That is what I love about training camp.”

Moving Jabrill Peppers in the Beckham-Vernon deal created the hole at strong safety, which Dorsey didn’t seem too concerned about Thursday, especially because they don’t have a game for another five months.

“We have some players on our roster that can help us,” Dorsey said. “The work is never done so you will try to explore every opportunity and every avenue you can, but then all of a sudden, you have competition in OTAs and training camp. That is where all of that stuff begins to unfold.”