Trent Dilfer is in the business of giving his opinion, and he pulled no punches when reflecting on his lone season with the Browns.
In an interview with Cleveland.com, the former NFL quarterback turned ESPN analyst obliterated ex-Browns offensive coordinator Maurice Carthon, whom Dilfer had the apparent displeasure of working under.
“Honestly, the only thing that was a bummer was I had the worst offensive coordinator I’ve ever had in my career,” Dilfer said. “If you ask anybody on that team that year, they’d say the same thing. We didn’t have unrealistic expectations. It was a terrible hire by (then-Browns head coach Romeo Crennel). It put all of us in a terrible situation. That’s the only reason. I made it very clear that I was not going to play one more snap as long as he was there.”
Dilfer started eleven games, winning only four, for the Browns in 2005. The team finished 6-10, mostly due to a maddeningly inconsistent offense that scored 14 points or less in eight games. Cleveland’s highest output that year came in Week 2 — a 26-24 win over the Packers at Lambeau Field.
Despite finishing with the highest completion percentage of his career (59.8 percent), Dilfer’s disdain of Carthon was too much to overcome. He requested — and was granted — a trade the following offseason, landing in San Francisco for his final season.
“It wasn’t a matter of want to, it was I couldn’t,” Dilfer said of playing longer in Cleveland. “I couldn’t justify looking my teammates in the eyes and knowing we had no chance with him as an offensive coordinator.”
Carthon, for those wondering, resigned as the Browns’ playcaller midway through the 2006 season, much to the delight of fans that, like Dilfer, grew sick of continued ineptitude.
(Photo credit: Cleveland.com)
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