Browns CEO Joe Banner chuckled in recalling reactions of Philadelphia Eagles coaches years ago as the club introduced advanced statistics into offices where decisions traditionally had been made based on film study, experience and gut instincts. Some probably conjured images of Dr. Sheldon Cooper -- the superhero-worshiping professor from the Big Bang Theory -- writing mathematical equations on a grease board to explain the optimal time to onside kick. “Reaction was varied to be honest,” said Banner who spent 19 years with the Eagles. “Some were embracing it, some thought it was nonsense. It’s like anything that’s new. Some coaches were wondering, ‘What the hell are you doing?’ “. . . Numbers to some people are like technology to some people. They feel foreign, they feel scary.” Under Banner, the Browns will crunch numbers in the scouting department the way they do stomachs in the gym. The franchise is joining a growing number of NFL teams utilizing analytics to evaluate everything from game-day situations to draft- and free-agent prospects to coaching candidates. New Browns president Alec Scheiner is spending the weekend in Boston serving as a panelist at the seventh annual MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference. He is a former Dallas Cowboys general counsel who also oversaw the organization’s analytics department. Scheiner will develop a similar model in Berea, Banner said, with newly-hired Ken Kovash as his senior stats man.
Cleveland Browns play numbers game, delving deep into advance statistics in hopes wins add up
Cleveland Plain Dealer | Mar 2