Asking for a chum: What may a team coached by way of Condoleezza Rice look like?
“My teams would run the ball and play great defense,” the former Secretary of State instructed me – years in the past, thoughts you – as we talked soccer technique.
Fair sufficient. Win in the trenches. But right here’s to hoping that Rice’s soccer philosophies have developed.
The buzz that surfaced Sunday about the Browns considering Rice for their head coaching job – briefly disputed in statements from Cleveland GM John Dorsey and Rice – induced a flashback from a discuss with together with her in 2009, in a while after she completed her tasks with the Bush management.
It took place to be the simplest interview that I’ve performed when the premises, a lodge convention room in Dana Point, Calif., have been swept by way of the Secret Service and a snoopy Ok-Nine operative.
Rice used to be there as keynote speaker to kick off NFL homeowners conferences, at the request of Roger Goodell.
“I like the game, technically,” Rice instructed me. “I really like the technique of the sport. I like to consider how my groups would play. My groups would run the ball. You keep watch over territory. It’s additionally the case whilst you run the ball, now not simplest do you keep watch over the clock, however I feel it’s demoralizing to an opponent. Scoring briefly is thrilling. It’s amusing. But it does not truly demoralize a protection like 4 yards, six yards, seven yards, little cross, 4 yards, 8 yards. That’s the means you wish to have to play ball.”
Yeah, inform that to Patrick Mahomes, the Kansas City quarterback who demoralizes and beats defenses with fast, deep moves. And don’t inform that to Browns enthusiasts pumped up by way of the presence of recent franchise quarterback Baker Mayfield. Of direction, let’s permit Rice the advantage of the doubt when taking into account that with Mayfield, she may construct her offense otherwise than as soon as envisioned.
As for her splendid protection, Rice may nonetheless mesh with the mindset of period in-between trainer Gregg Williams, who prefer an competitive protection this is heavy on the blitz.
Would that be “46” taste or the zone-blitz taste?
“Buddy Ryan … there always looked like there were 14 people on the field when Buddy Ryan’s defenses were out there,” Rice spoke back. “But I might most likely have extra of a Dick LeBeau protection.”
Ah, the zone blitzes.
“What an idea, proper?” Rice stated. “Drop back big defensive linemen. I like defensive linemen in coverage.”
Still, when Rice instructed one long-time NFL trainer all the way through the ones NFL conferences about how she may even blitz whilst in a save you protection, you may consider the response.
“Norv Turner and I had a little exchange about the prevent defense,” she stated. “He mentioned that I’d feel differently the first time I blitzed and they went long — 70 yards for the touchdown.”
We know now her option to protection has developed since then. In her commentary Sunday she stated she would love to name a few performs subsequent season however “at no time will I name for a ‘save you protection.'”
Rice’s soccer roots don’t put her in the combine to train the Browns, however they’re certainly wealthy. Her father coached soccer and served as athletic director at Fairfield Industrial High School in Birmingham, Ala. (the place her mom used to be English instructor for Willie Mays). Although her father, who went directly to turn into a minister, did the bulk of his training prior to Rice used to be born, he robotically took her to look at highschool video games as she grew up. And every Sunday, they watched the video games of the NFL team proven on tv in the Birmingham marketplace – the Browns.
It’s no marvel that for far of her lifestyles, she has professed an allegiance to the Browns.
“Partly I think it was Jim Brown, but of course, I was attracted to Paul Brown,” Rice recalled. “I was talking to (Bengals owner) Mike Brown, and I mentioned that I absolutely loved Paul Brown from the time I was 5 years old. So, alas, when Paul Brown was fired by the Cleveland Browns, I immediately in a great bit of pique at whatever I was, 10 years old, transferred my loyalties to the Cincinnati Bengals when Paul Brown founded the Bengals.”
Rice even rooted for the Bengals to win their two Super Bowl matchups in opposition to San Francisco all the way through the 1980s – in spite of residing in the middle of 49ers nation.
She was a Browns fan once more when the franchise used to be revived in 1999, together with her shut buddy Carmen Policy, the former 49ers president, enlisted to run the Browns.
Of direction, being a large fan isn’t any requirement to turn into trainer.
Yet there’s no query Rice would carry a lot to the desk for the Browns – and indubitably on a bigger scale for the NFL — in an govt capability. She’s significantly better suited to interchange Goodell than, neatly, Hue Jackson.