Browns GM John Dorsey: "I hate Hype. It's not real"

Cleveland, OH (92.3 The Fan) – Browns general manager John Dorsey appreciates the accolades he and the team have received this offseason.

He also embraces the expectations that have followed. Las Vegas currently lists them with the fifth-best odds to win the Super Bowl.

But the hype? Well that’s a bridge too far.

“I hate hype,” Dorsey said in an interview with Bull and Fox on 92.3 The Fan Tuesday afternoon.

“Listen, it’s not real. Real is when you go to training camp. Real is when you finally get the guys in pads. Real is those guys in that locker room setting those goals because we have some guys now that can set goals and expectations for those guys in the locker room because ultimately, who are the Cleveland Browns, but those guys in that locker room.

“So now you gotta go compete day in and day out, you gotta forge together as one. Not individuals, as one team collectively because once the season gets rolling there’s going to be adversity somewhere during the season. How strong are you as a group to overcome that adverse moment, fight through it and continue on your path to your goal.”

Dorsey recapped the 2019 NFL Draft that saw him trade up three spots in the second round to select LSU cornerback Greedy Williams, a move he wasn’t sure he was going to be able to pull off.

“There were some guys you knew were going to pop off that board quick on the second day and then all of the sudden you start seeing that guy from LSU kinda drop down there,” Dorsey said. “So I said, ‘Boys, it’s time and let’s go. Let’s start working the phones to get up in there.’

“I was still nervous we wouldn’t be able to pull that trade off and he would’ve fallen three spots in front of us and I would’ve been pissed if that happened.”

Moments after being drafted, Williams declared the Browns were going to the Super Bowl and were also going to win it.

“What that is, he’s caught up in the moment and he’s excited he’s drafted, he’s all pumped up,” Dorsey said. “He’s got to come in here and he’s got to be able to earn the respect of those guys. He’s got to learn that playbook.”

Dorsey praised the personal and athletic transformation of his third-round pick – linebacker Sione Takitaki.

“As a person, you like to see young men mature,” Dorsey said. “And all of the sudden, he has matured. He met the woman of his dreams, and guess what? When we all meet the woman of our dreams, we usually mature and that was a driving force. And then he becomes team captain at BYU in 2018. You gotta be pretty good to go through what he did and make that transition.

“As a player, I think he’s got instinct, I think he’s got passion. He plays the game, he plays the position the way you’re supposed to play the game. He runs to the football. He can stack the point of attack. He’s a really good blitzer. There’s a lot to like about how the way this guy plays the game of football. I’ll be honest with you, he’s one of my favorite players in this draft.”

The steal of the draft for Dorsey may have come in the fifth round with the fall of Alabama linebacker Mack Wilson.

“Maybe he felt a little bit slighted where he went, and now all of the sudden you’ve got a player of his caliber with a little bit of a chip on his shoulder,” Dorsey said. “I’m OK with having a really good football player with a chip on his shoulder because he’s going to come to prove to not only the people that didn’t draft him, but himself, that I’m a pretty good football player.”

As for that criticism about drafting Oklahoma kicker Austin Seibert 170th overall, not a big deal.

“That’s alright. I like oranges, you like apples,” Dorsey said in response to Dustin Fox telling him that he didn’t like the pick. “He was the best kicker we had rated. What does it do? It creates competition at what I think is a very important position.

“We wouldn’t have gotten him in free agency because he was about to go early in the sixth round.”

Dorsey was asked if there were other options to create that competition for incumbent Greg Joseph to which he responded, “Not of the quality that this kid had.”

Prior to the draft Dorsey signed quarterback Garrett Gilbert of the Orlando Apollos of the now defunct Alliance of American Football and it’s expected that Purdue quarterback David Blough will join the mix this weekend, but Dorsey did not confirm that. As for Gilbert, “We thought he was the best player in the AAF,” Dorsey said.

Dorsey also praised Kareem Hunt’s work since being signed in February when asked about the controversial back.

Hunt is suspended for the first eight games of the season and not eligible to play until Nov. 10 against Buffalo stemming from multiple off-the-field incidents including that video showing him pushing and kicking a woman outside his downtown Cleveland apartment in Feb. 2018.

“We all know that he is remorseful,” Dorsey said. “We’ve said this all along, you have t earn the right to be a member of this organization. There are no guarantees. I like the way he’s attacking this thing day in and day out. I applaud him for what he is doing on the field and how hard he is working but what people don’t realize is once he’s off the field, he’s doing things unannounced. He’s actually going out doing stuff and talking to young kids and working behind the scenes to teach young kids don’t make the same mistake that I made.”

Cleveland Heights High School’s athletic account tweeted that Hunt visited their school Tuesday and spoke to the football team.

As for Duke Johnson’s future in Cleveland, Dorsey continues to reinforce what he’s said all offseason.

“I keep telling you guys, and you all don't listen to me, Duke Johnson is a valuable member of this organization,” Dorsey said. “He’s very talented and this organization has plans to use him.”

Listen to the full interview above.