Browns welcome in Appalachian St. product

CLEVELAND – A hero to Ohio State football fans signed with the Browns this week.

Armanti Edwards gained fame for quarterbacking the Appalachian State Mountaineers to a 34-32 upset of Michigan in the 2007 college season. The win made Edwards an instant hit to Buckeye fans who enjoyed seeing the arch-rival Wolverines lose to a FCS team.

Surprisingly, Edwards doesn’t consider that game the highlight of his career.

“Michigan is a great win that the world knew, but people don’t realize that I was part of two national championships,” Edwards said. “We only lost two conference games in my four years.”

Edwards is known to area fans for leading the Mountaineers to a 49-24 win over the Youngstown State University Penguins in the semifinals of the 2006 FCS playoffs.

Edwards is the only two-time winner of the Walter Payton Award, given each year to the top FCS player. The Carolina Panthers selected him in the second round of the 2010 NFL draft.

Edwards was moved to receiver by the Panthers, but he struggled in making the move. In three previous seasons he had a combined five receptions for 121 yards. He failed to record a reception in four games with the Panthers before being waived this year.

“I’ve played quarterback all my life,” Edwards said. “To come and play with the best players in the world and change your position was tough.”

The Browns are expected to try Edwards in the return game. That role becomes more important because of the loss of Travis Benjamin to a knee injury.

STAT MAN: Defensive coordinator Ray Horton is admittedly a fan of statistics. He doesn’t believe in the saying that statistics are for losers.

“Numbers are all we deal with,” Horton said. “We deal with wins and losses. Those are numbers. The players are paid by their statistics. In our world, statistics are very pertinent and important in our game.”

ROUGH TIMES: The Browns thought they had a dependable receiver on board when they acquired Davone Bess in a trade with the Dolphins. Bess, however, leads the Browns in the dubious category of dropped passes with five.

“Davone is a pro and a tough player,” offensive coordinator Norv Turner said. “He’s going through a tough period right now. He’s practicing well and catching the ball. I expect him to come out of it.”

SACK MEN: The Browns have been criticized for not getting much pressure on quarterbacks since early in the season. Still, the defense is tied with the Seahawks for third in the NFL with 26 sacks. The Browns lead the league by having 15 different players with a sack.

MOVING THE CHARTS: Tight end Jordan Cameron leads all NFL tight ends with 49 receptions and is second in receiving yards with 596. Only Jimmy Graham of the Saints has more yards at 630.

OMINOUS NOTE: The Ravens have an all-time record of 12-5 in games following a bye week, including wins in 10 of the last 11. They are 5-0 after a bye since John Harbaugh was named coach in 2008.