Talk about the Top 100 here."/>

Doc Gonzo's Top 100: #81 - 90

Doc Gonzo's Top 100: #81 - 90

The Doctor is back in, counting down his take on the Top 100 Cleveland Browns players of all time. We move up through number 81 in this installment. What do you think? <A HREF="http://insiders2.ezboard.com/fbrownsinsiderfrm34">Talk about the Top 100 here</A>.

This list is filled with unsung heroes that have faded into the history books. It's also a good example of players I've had second thoughts about. For example, I like Bill Glass more and more, but I just don't want to retool the entire list for a defensive end that played 40 years ago. That's the problem with this sort of thing: I made this list up last year, then put it aside. I had all sorts of justification and reasons for every player and his position, but many months later (and many gallons of what the great Herb Caen called Vitamin V for vodka), I can no longer recall all of my rationalizations. For some reason, I have Jerry Sherk and Walter Johnson, great defensive linemen from the 1970s, rated lower than the early 1990s combo of Anthony Pleasant and Rob Burnett. Don't ask me why. I remember the latter duo playing, but have only vague memories of Sherk. And it's my list. Humbug!

Here's today's installment. Let the "Doc Gonzo is clearly a moron" campaign begin (or continue) …

81. STEVE EVERITT (C, 1993-1995): Yes, he was a flaky art major from the University of Michigan drafted 13th overall in 1993, but he was loyal. A good center, Everitt wore a Browns bandana during a nationally televised game in 1996 after he and the team moved to Baltimore. A wonderful gesture. Led an offensive line in 1994 that allowed just 14 sacks. He later played for the Eagles and Rams. His Web site, www.se-foundation.org, benefits children. He also has links to Browns Backer chapters near his North Carolina home. Has visited BerniesInsiders chats in the past.

82. MONTE CLARK  (T, 1963-1969): A fourth-round draft pick of the 49ers in 1959, Clark made his way to Cleveland after a season with Dallas (1962). He anchored the tackle position, opening holes for both Jim Brown and Leroy Kelly as the Browns made it to the NFL championship game in 1964 and 1965. Jim Brown once called Monte and his fellow linemates "the greatest downfield blockers in the history of professional football." Clark later amassed a 51-67-1 record as head coach of the 49ers (1976) and the Lions (1978-84). Took the Lions to the playoffs in 1982 and 1983. Has coached offensive line everywhere, including Cal, Stanford and the Miami Dolphins in recent years. Also coached an American football team in Russia for a season.

83. ERICH BARNES (DB, 1965-1971): A six-time Pro Bowler, including 1968 with the Browns, Barnes spent the first seven seasons of his NFL career with the Bears and Giants. Came to Cleveland in 1966 from New York in exchange for a third-round draft pick that year. Played left cornerback for several strong seasons. Moved to safety at the end of his career. Holds the team record for highest average gain on interception returns in a career, 23 yards per pick on 18 career picks. Returned three for scores, which it tied for third most in team history.

84. BILL GLASS  (DE, 1962-1968): After playing for the Lions from 1958 to 1961, Glass arrive in Cleveland after a complicated fifth-round draft day trade … and immediately became a four-time Pro Bowler for the Browns. An integral part of the Cleveland defense that crippled Baltimore in the 1964 NFL title game. In 1965, he set the single-season team record, which still stands, with 14.5 sacks. In 1966, he set the team mark for consecutive games with a sack (7). A terror at defensive end, Glass off the field was studying to become a minister. He earned his theology degree and later appeared with the Rev. Billy Graham on television. A well-known motivational speak, Glass has been profiled several times nationally for his prison ministry. An All-American at Baylor, he also spent a season in the CFL right out of college. I was thinking he should be higher on the list, but, well, I was too lazy to move him.

85. ERNIE GREEN  (RB, 1962-1968): Really unheralded as a running back and rather lost to the ages, all Green did was blast open holes for Hall of Famers Jim Brown and Leroy Kelly. Not glamorous work, but a job well done. Amassed a quiet 3,204 yards on 668 carries, good for a 4.8 yards a pop average that stands only second in team history to Brown. Best season came in 1966, a year after Brown retired, when he ran for 750 yards on 144 carries (5.2 avg) and scored three times. Also caught 45 passes for 445 yards and six more scores. All was done as second banana to Leroy Kelly and Gary Collins. Green was a very capable pass-catcher out of the backfield. Has since gone on to a very successful career in the automotive industry.

86. JERRY SHERK (DT, 1970-1981): One of the best defensive ends in team history, and any other writer worth his weight in dog biscuits would have him rated much higher. Second all-time on the team with 69 career sacks. Recorded a career-high 12 in 1979, the first Kardiac Kids season. Went to the Pro Bowl each year from 1973 to 1976, and the NEA named him its defensive player of the year in 1976. Notched a team-record four sacks in a game against the Eagles that year. A series of knee injuries and then a near-fatal staph infection forced him into retirement.

87. WALTER JOHNSON (DT, 1965-1976): Perhaps one of the toughest players in team history. Nearly lost fingers to frostbite after a playoff game at Minnesota. Never missed a game … 168 consecutive games, in fact, good for fourth-best in team history. Third all-time on the team with 58 sacks. Pro Bowler from 1967-69. An outstanding plugger in the middle who picked off a pair of passes in his career. His pressure in the middle helped force opposing quarterbacks into many bad tosses, helping Cleveland set an interception record in 1968 with 32. Helped the team to a pair of NFL Championship games. Played his final season in Cincinnati. Passed away at age 56 in 1999.

88. ERNIE KELLERMAN (DB, 1966-1971): Started five seasons at safety after being signed by the Browns in  1966. Had played quarterback at Miami of Ohio. A very solid, if unspectacular, defensive back. Joined fellow secondarymate Erich Barnes in the 1968 Pro Bowl. Picked off six passes that season as the Browns set a then-team record with 32 interceptions (later broken by the 2001 team).  Spent the 1972 season with Cincinnati and the following year with Buffalo.

89. GERALD MCNEIL (WR/KR, 1986-1989): Known and loved as the Ice Cube, the diminutive wide receiver never made much impact as a pass catcher, but was punt return demon. Despite being just 5-foot-7 and 143 lbs, he's the team's all-time leader with 161 career returns, including 49 in 1989, and seven in a game three times. His best season was his rookie year, when he led the team with 40 punt returns, including an 84-yarder for a touchdown that helped beat the Lions. He also was the team's primary kick returner that season, recording 47 for 997 yards, including a 100-yarder to help the Browns break the Three Rivers Stadium jinx in Pittsburgh. Both his career receiving touchdowns came in 1986, when he caught a total of eight passes for 120 yards. Spent 1990 with the Houston Oilers. Finished his 76-game career with 29 grabs for 380 yards and four rushes for 61 yards.

90. CHARLIE HALL (LB, 1971-1980): Quite honestly, I don't know a whole lot about Charlie Hall. This pick is based on what others have told me, and the little I was able to find about him online. He's considered by many to be one of the better linebackers in team history, teaming with Clay Mathews, Robert L. Jackson and Dick Ambrose to form perhaps the best foursome to wear the brown and orange together. Recorded 13 career interceptions, scoring on one in 1974. Was later replaced by Eddie Johnson

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