Browns postcard (cont.)
Posted: Sunday July 29, 2007 10:08PM; Updated: Monday July 30, 2007 10:14PM
On The Menu
If only the Browns played as well as they cooked.
I say this on most trips to Brownsville, but I don't see how a team could serve food that is any healthier or tastier. Today's fare: Sliced Balsamic skirt steak, steamed zucchini and squash, with a small side of whole wheat pasta (with a garlic coating). The steak was tender and superb, even though I probably ruined it with a dollop of A-1 sauce. Terrific vegetables, crunchy and tasty. And the pasta -- get me that recipe in a hurry! I'm usually not a whole-wheat pasta fan, but the taste of this stuff was right out of Little Italy.
The grade: A+
As if the meal wasn't good enough, a very nice food-service lady approached me at my table while I was eating and said, "Sir, can I get you a fresh fruit smoothie?" I didn't take it, but in a weaker moment, I might have.
Every camp you visit at this time of year has one or two players who causes you to do a double-take. Today's takee: Ted Washington.
Yes, this condominium-complex of a defensive tackle, now 39, is in camp moving as well as a 390-pound man can possibly move and is penciled in as the starter again at nose tackle for the Browns. He started all 16 games last year for Cleveland.
"What are you still doing here?" I asked him after practice today. "I'm blessed, first of all," Washington said. "They say I'm too big, too heavy, too fat to keep playing. Well, all I know is that I've been here 17 years. I'm still playing at a high level, so I must be doing something right."
Washington, quite simply, is the biggest man I've ever seen play pro football. I'm amazed that he's now started 48 straight regular season games the last three years. He broke into pro football in 1991 as a first-round pick with the 49ers. He played there for three years, one in Denver, six in Buffalo, two in Chicago, one in New England (he got traded to the Patriots, via the Bears, and started in Super Bowl XXXVIII against Carolina at the nose), two in Oakland and, so far, one in Cleveland.
"The way I feel right now, I'd love to play two more," said Washington.
It's amazing enough the guy has played 17 years in the NFL. But to be talking about playing 18, 19 or maybe even 20 ... that would be one of the unique feats in recent NFL history.
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