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Corey Williams


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BEREA — Robaire Smith wears No. 98 on his back and a smile on his face.


Corey Williams, No. 99, is sporting a perplexed look these days.


Smith is the Browns’ starting right defensive end. Amid the gloom of a 1-6 year, he is coming off a 12-tackle game against Green Bay.


It was a sign that, two weeks short of his 32nd birthday, he is capable of grinding out an NFL living quite a while longer.


His 2008 was wrecked by an Achilles injury. In his first four games back, he totaled just five tackles. But now he has 23 tackles in his last three games.


So, the old man still has it?


“Me personally? I never felt I lost it in the first place,” Smith said. “I’m starting to get my confidence back with my body.”


Williams is the Browns’ backup right defensive end behind Smith.


The Green Bay game was embarrassing for him. Eighteen months ago, Williams was the Packers’ franchise player, with his stock so high that the Browns coughed up a second-round pick to get him.


Against his old team Sunday, by his own count, he was in on just eight snaps.


Williams was rumored to be on the trading block last week, but he still was a Brown when the deadline passed. He didn’t feel like much of one Sunday, when he barely played.


What’s going on?


“All I know is something’s got to change,” Williams said Wednesday. “That’s all I’m going to say.”


Williams made his frustration known after Head Coach Eric Mangini already had done his daily news conference.


When Mangini is asked about it today, it will be interesting to hear what he has to say. Williams was acquired to help turn the defensive line into a major strength, a sidekick to Pro Bowl nose tackle Shaun Rogers.


However, Williams was slow to adapt to a 3-4 scheme in 2008 after playing in a 4-3 at Green Bay, and the Mangini regime obviously isn’t as high on him as Phil Savage once was.


The starting defensive ends have been Smith and Kenyon Coleman, one of Mangini’s imports from the Jets. Williams has been rotated in, sometimes not all that often. He ranks 18th on the team with 10 tackles.


If there’s a bright side, it’s that Williams can’t be blamed for a big share of the team’s league defensive rank, No. 32, since he hasn’t played much.


Meanwhile, Smith is showing signs of being a stabilizing force on a defense that has moved into rebuilding mode.


“I can feel myself getting more tuned in,” said Smith, who started all 16 games for a 10-6 Browns team in 2007, then blew out an Achilles in last year’s second game. “My job is the same as it always was. The onus is on the defensive line and the linebackers to stop the run.”


Smith isn’t kidding himself. He knows the Browns haven’t been stopping anything anywhere close to often enough.


Yet he is optimistic about the unit turning a corner Sunday at Chicago.


“As a whole,” he said, “I think we’re getting pretty close. You can go back and look at film.


“It’s not as much what anybody is doing to us. It’s mainly what we’re doing to ourselves.”




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I think the fact that they said that Robaire Smith wears a big smile on his face is nauseating. (Although I really doubt he is smiling)


You're a starter on the worst defense in the league and you're happy about it?


The defense was on the field for 90% of the game and ALL you could get was 10 tackles?


This story is like shooting fish in a barrel. You could write it about 80% percent of the browns players.

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How is he supposed to have more tackles if defenses simply laugh on 3 and long, and they


throw over his head every time to a wide open receiver?


Misplaced angst, says I.

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This is ironic...


because im not happy with his play.


also i am not happy with his contract.


and im not happy that we lost a 2nd round pick for this POS.


Quit yer bitchin you will be gone in a couple of months with your bloated ass contract.

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How is he supposed to have more tackles if defenses simply laugh on 3 and long, and they


throw over his head every time to a wide open receiver?


Misplaced angst, says I.


No, your right. The "Only ten tackles a game and you're happy" comment was sarcastic.


However I have a hard time believing anybody on this defense is doing anything but sucking wind, let alone smiling as the author suggests.


But at least the writer is trying to find some bright spots to report about.

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Corey Williams is a clear cut case of a round peg into a square-hole kind of fit-player-wise. He just isn't the right fit for the kind of defense the Browns want to run. Also, he probably wasn't as talented as we perceived either when we made the move to add him to our team. This is where it is important to scout a player based off how he will specifically impact your team.

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