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Marla Ridenour on Sports

Browns find plenty of good men

By Marla Published: September 8, 2010

Not only did the Browns find a strong, credible leader for their front office in president Mike Holmgren, but they found a few in the locker room, too.

Quarterback Jake Delhomme and linebacker Scott Fujita have only been with the Browns since March, but they were among the six players voted captains on Wednesday.

''It's definitely an honor. There's a lot of good character guys on this team, so to be selected, I don't take that responsibility lightly,'' Fujita said.

Delhomme and left tackle Joe Thomas were selected on offense, Fujita and defensive end Robaire Smith on defense and Joshua Cribbs and Phil Dawson on special teams. Thomas, Cribbs and Dawson are repeaters from last season.

Coach Eric Mangini will continue his ''state of the union type meetings'' with the captains once a week, allowing them to serve as liasons.

''I like the group of guys that were elected,'' Mangini said. ''They'll do a great job.''

Asked about having two newcomers picked, Mangini said he had the same thing happen with the New York Jets when offensive lineman Alan Faneca was elected.

''They're really good people, they have inherent leadership qualities, what I look for in captains,'' Mangini said. ''They're always pushing the group to do the right thing in a way people want to follow.''

Mangini said Smith may be quieter than the rest, but ''It's apparent his leadership is felt in other ways.''

''I think it's a great honor,'' Smith said, ''especially any time your peers pick you to be something like this.''

The weekly meetings eventually wore on running back Jamal Lewis last season, especially as he took issue with Mangini's tough practices. Going to those sessions doesn't seem to bother Smith.

''That's cool. That's something that comes with it,'' he said. ''I'm happy to be (doing) that.''

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