Glenn Cook, who had a marathon career at linebacker for the Miami Hurricanes, is a Browns executive who has had a hand in picking three linebackers in the last two drafts.
Browns executive Glenn Cook wishes he had a crystal ball to tell him if the NFL is headed for a schedule cut to two preseason games.
"All things are on the table," Cook said during a Zoom meeting Thursday. "I wouldn't be surprised (if the preseason is cut in half)."
The preseason schedule announced in April has the Browns playing at Chicago Aug. 15, at Green Bay Aug. 22, at home against Minnesota Aug. 30 and at home against Tampa Bay on Sept. 3. Coronavirus issues loom.
"There's so much uncertainty around," said Cook, who is the Browns’ vice president of player personnel after spending four years as assistant director of pro scouting.
When can players report to team headquarters in Berea? What might become of the Sept. 13 season opener at Baltimore? Answers have been vague.
"It's up to us to adjust to whatever policies are set down," Cook said.
Revenue losses could lead to a smaller salary cap.
"All of that comes into play when it comes to any of these moves we're considering," Cook said. "It does somewhat change what our overall plan is."
The Browns have 2017 No. 1 overall pick Myles Garrett contract under contract through 2021 after picking up his fifth-year option. What of long-term contract talks?
"I can't give you an update," Cook said. "We hope to have him for a long time."
Cook had a marathon college career as a Miami Hurricanes linebacker. He sat out his true-freshman season of 2003, played as a backup in 2004 and 2005, started in 2006, missed 2007 with an injury, obtained an extra "hardship" season, and captained the 2008 team that went 7-6 under head coach Randy Shannon.
Also a baseball player, Cook was drafted by the Cubs in 2009 and played 34 rookie-league games before swinging back into football.
Both Cook and Andrew Berry, now the Browns' general manager, were scouting assistants with the Colts in 2011. Cook jumped to the Packers in 2012, forming a relationship with John Dorsey prior to Dorsey's exit to Kansas City in 2013.
Berry became the Browns' vice president of player personnel in 2016, at which point he lured Cook away from the Packers. Cook stayed on with the Browns after Dorsey became general manager in 2018.
Berry was gone to the Eagles in 2019. Cook said Berry's return has been "a real cool reacclimation." He declined to compare the Browns' 2020 organization to past ones for which he has worked.
Of new head coach Kevin Stefanski, Cook said, "One thing that sticks out is that he's very strategic and specific about how he has addressed every situation ... I've been really impressed."
Cooks is undaunted by having to communicate electronically, noting 32 teams are in the same boat.
The former Hurricane linebacker was part of Dorsey's staff last year when the Browns drafted linebackers Sione Takitaki (No. 80 overall, Brigham Young) and Mack Wilson (No. 155 overall, USC).
He had input this year when the Berry regime spent a No. 97 overall pick on LSU linebacker Jacob Phillips.
In April, Cook was fired up about landing Florida Atlantic tight end Harrison Bryant at No. 115 overall. He said Bryant's profile runs much deeper than a strong game against a famous team.
"Everyone kind of locked onto his Ohio State game," he said. "Across all his exposures, you couldn't poke too many holes in his game."
Stefanski's offense is supposed to lean heavily on tight ends.
"I don't think it hurts to make the head coach happy," Cook said.
Reach Steve at 330-580-8347 or email@example.com
On Twitter: @sdoerschukREP