Monday, July 1, 2013
Wake-up: Jimmy Haslam's troubling debt
By Jamison Hensley
July has arrived, which means the last of the first-round draft picks will be signing shortly and teams will be reporting to training camp by the end of the month. Let's see what the wake-up call has in store for you:
RAVENS: Many wonder whether Corey Graham will beat out Jimmy Smith to remain a starting cornerback. Graham, though, told the team's website that he sees a bigger role for himself -- defensive playmaker. In 12 starts last season, Graham made four interceptions, including two off Peyton Manning in the playoffs. “Obviously, I've got high expectations for myself," said Graham, who was a Pro Bowl special teams player for the Chicago Bears. "I pride myself on making plays, and I want to go out there and do whatever it takes to help the defense win.”
BENGALS: Fullback Chris Pressley, a two-year starter for the Bengals, is still recovering from a knee injury that occurred on Dec. 13. He told The Cincinnati Enquirer that he doesn't know how much he'll participate in training camp or if he'll start the season on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list. “It’s a little frustrating because I’m injured right now, trying to recover from that,” he said. The other fullback on the roster is John Conner.
STEELERS: In another report predicting Jarvis Jones' role this season, the National Football Post's Len Pasquarelli wrote the Steelers have seen enough this offseason to privately acknowledge that the first-round pick can bump Jason Worilds out of the starting outside linebacker job. “He’s got (linebacker) instincts,” defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau said. “You don’t have to (wean) him off the end stuff.”
BROWNS: The latest troubling report on Browns owner Jimmy Haslam comes from the Wall Street Journal, which has Haslam's family-run Pilot Flying J about $4 billion in debt and its credit rating "downgraded." The Plain Dealer's Terry Pluto wrote: "Obviously, Haslam has a lot of assets, including about 600 truck stops and the Browns. But you like the owner of your team to have a steady cash flow and not a mountain of legal concerns."