Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden has yet to sign his rookie contract, and he appears to be getting antsy about the situation.
Weeden and other members of the Browns’ 2012 draft class participated this morning in the NFL Rookie Symposium PLAY 60 Youth Football Clinic in Berea. The Browns have signed nine of their 11 picks from this year’s class.
Weeden, the 22nd overall pick, and running back Trent Richardson, the third overall selection, are the exceptions. Both are expected to become immediate starters.
When asked for an update about the status of his contract, Weeden said, “What’s the politically correct answer here? I wish it was done, but I don’t know. It’ll get done. We’re working. It takes two sides, though.”
On June 11, Weeden told the Beacon Journal he would sign before training camp.To read more or comment...
The NFL announced today that kickoff times for Sunday late-afternoon doubleheader games on CBS and FOX will be pushed back from 4:15 p.m. to 4:25 p.m.
For now, only one game on the Browns’ schedule is affected by the change. Kickoff for the Browns’ road game Dec. 2 against the Oakland Raiders will be moved from 4:15 p.m. to 4:25 p.m. The game is set to be televised on CBS.To read more or comment...
Browns defensive tackle Phil Taylor is optimistic he’ll be able to play this year, though he vowed to remain patient as he recovers from a torn left pectoral muscle.
“I’m itching to get back, but I’m not gonna rush it,” Taylor told reporters today. “When I know it’s time for me to be out there, I’ll get out there.”
Taylor stopped by the NFL Rookie Symposium PLAY 60 Youth Football Clinic at the Browns’ headquarters in Berea to catch up with former Baylor University teammate and Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III. The NFC rookies participated in the camp for youngsters today, and their AFC counterparts, including members of the Browns’ 2012 draft class, will do the same Friday. As part of the symposium, all the rookies go through orientation at the Bertram Inn & Conference Center in Aurora and visit the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton this week.
Taylor hopes to be on the field for another reunion with Griffin when the Redskins visit the Browns on Dec. 16. The 6-foot-3, 335-pound Taylor suffered the torn pectoral May 10 while bench-pressing more than 300 pounds. He had surgery May 16.To read more or comment...
The Browns will open training camp to the public on July 28, the team announced today.
Sixteen practices listed below are free and open to the public, and all but one will be held at the team's training facility in Berea. A free Family Night practice is set for 7 p.m. Aug. 8 at Cleveland Browns Stadium.
Fans can enter the Berea facility through the Beech Street entrance. Parking is available on the campus of Baldwin-Wallace College near the intersection of Beech Street and Bagley Road. The latest information on practice times can be obtained by calling 877-6BROWNS (877-627-6967) or visiting www.ClevelandBrowns.com.
Here is the schedule:To read more or comment...
After Browns linebacker Scott Fujita left an appeals hearing today with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, he said the league is targeting him in a “smear campaign” and insisted he has yet to see evidence that proves he was involved in a bounty program during his stint with the New Orleans Saints.
The NFL suspended Fujita for the first three games of the upcoming season, accusing him of contributing money to a pool administered by former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams that the league says paid players for injuring opponents. Fujita, who played for the Saints from 2006-09 and signed with the Browns in 2010, has repeatedly denied the allegations.
“In the last couple of months, the NFL has embarked on a smear campaign highlighted by sensationalistic headlines … and unsubstantiated leaks to the media,” Fujita told reporters after he exited the NFL’s headquarters in New York. “I have yet to see anything that implicates me in some pay-to-injure scheme, not in the last three months, not in the last three days, not today, and perhaps that’s because there’s nothing that could implicate me in some pay-to-injure scheme.
“It’s become increasingly clear to me that just because someone disagrees with the NFL’s interpretation of an incredibly flawed investigation, it’s assumed that he’s lying, and to me, that’s a shame. I’ve played 10 years in this league and throughout my career I’ve done nothing but conduct myself in a positive manner. And this has impacted my reputation. This has impacted my ability to provide and earn for my family now and in the future, and I have a hard time with that. The NFL has been careless and irresponsible, and they’ve made mistakes.”To read more or comment...
University of Texas quarterback Case McCoy fell for a prank on Twitter that apparently led him to believe the Browns traded his older brother, quarterback Colt McCoy, so the younger McCoy reacted by blasting the organization on Friday night.
Although Case McCoy prematurely lashed out, those feelings of frustration might resurface because the Browns could certainly trade Colt McCoy at some point this summer. Citing unnamed sources, Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com reported this evening that the Browns are shopping Colt McCoy and looking for minimal compensation.
During a news conference Thursday, Browns President Mike Holmgren said “right now the plan is not to” move Colt McCoy or quarterback Seneca Wallace before training camp begins in late July. But Holmgren also said "plans change" and warned “you shouldn’t be surprised by anything” when asked whether the team would be open to listening to trade offers for Colt McCoy or Wallace.
“I think you are open to listen to every phone call,” Holmgren said. “You talk about stuff. If we think it’s a good thing [that can] make the Cleveland Browns better, then we would consider it.”
On Tuesday, Wallace said there's "probably not" enough room for him and Colt McCoy on the roster, even though Browns coach Pat Shurmur said he could see both players sticking around.To read more or comment...
Browns President Mike Holmgren met with reporters this afternoon. Here is a transcript from the news conference:
(Opening Statement)- “Good afternoon everybody. If I could for a couple of minutes before we get started here, I think it’s important that I talk just a little bit about the plan moving forward. I’ve talked to you about this before and I’ve mentioned it to some of you individually, also some of you collectively I think, but I think it’s important to me that it’s understood that we’re approaching our third season here with the new group. Philosophically, it was really important to me as the President and a new president, something I’ve never done before, to come in and support the coach in any way I could, first of all, and secondly, not take anything away from his time. As a coach for a long, long time, I think I told you that anytime the president got involved with football stuff it used to irritate me a little bit and we had many discussions about that. If something was going to be said about the football team, I would like to be the one that says it. I think it’s important to have one voice, so on and so forth. That was my thinking coming into this job and this position so I’ve to do that, honestly, for a couple years Not that I’m hard-headed, but I have started to listen to some people and some people in this room quite honestly and then also people that I meet around town and at various things that Kathy and I are involved in, saying that, “We’d like to hear a little bit more from you about things, it’s fun,” and whatever they say. This year that’s what I am going to try and do. Now, exactly how that is going to manifest itself, I couldn’t really give you the blueprint for that yet. But, I’ve talked to both Pat (Shurmur) and Tom (Heckert) about this idea and they have to know and your coach has to know that the president is on your side. You’ve got to know that and there can’t be any controversies created by things that I would say and Pat would say and Tom would say. The hard part about it is that at times there will be a little thing that comes out where it will be easy to say, ‘Well wait a minute, he said this and he said this, what does it mean?’ That is kind of the danger of this, a little bit, but as long as they know that I have their back and we don’t want that to happen and that we have talked about most things football before any press conference takes place, either by Pat or Tom or me, but the bottom line is that I am going to try and be more available. I have a great young coach and I have a tremendous general manager and my motives in setting up the things for the first couple of years, I think were the right ones. I have no regrets about that, but in listening to, again as I said, a little bit of what people asked me when I am out and about and again, what some of you have asked me in a private moment or two, that’s how we are going to try and do that. We’re kind of starting the ball rolling today. I know Pat had his press conference with you this week. I’m going to do this today and then when we come back in the fall I am going to be more available to you. If you ask and it doesn’t happen please understand that I’m trying to do this a different way, so that’s how we’re going to do it. It’s going to be a little bit of a change, but we all have to understand this, this is really important, that Pay Shurmur is the coach of this football team, he will make football decisions. Tom Heckert and Pat and I talk about every football decision, but the head coach has to have that responsibility otherwise it doesn’t work very well, in my opinion. That’s how it’s going to be set up. Having said that, now fire away. We have some time here and then guys are going to go on vacation, the players are cut loose after tomorrow, the coaches go on vacation, the building kind of shuts down a little bit over the summer as you know. Then we’ll come back and kind of tee it up around the time I have my motorcycle ride, which you’re all invited to participate in if you own motorcycles. Spend a little money, it’s okay (joking). I would like to see you there actually.”
(On if the team plans to move either Seneca Wallace or Colt McCoy before training camp)- “Right now the plan is not to. I think that position, heck the first two years we’ve had to go to the third quarterback because of injury, so that’s not to say we might change something, but right now, no. Right now they are all practicing very hard. Our quarterback position is a strong position, in my opinion and something might happen as we approach training camp or during the training camp season, but that’s how we’re looking at it right now.”To read more or comment...
Browns President Mike Holmgren met with reporters this afternoon at the team’s headquarters in Berea, reiterating his commitment to the organization and vowing to be more available to fans and media than he has been since he joined the franchise more than two years ago. Holmgren, who is in the third year of his five-year contract with the Browns, disputed the idea he’s not fully invested in his job.
“When I heard that, I was sensitive to that and it bothered me because if anything I think I care probably too much,” Holmgren said. “I’m committed. I made promises to our owner [Randy Lerner], and he’s kept his promises to me. Everyone is well aware of my contract situation and all that, and there was that [rumor] -- in fact a couple of you asked me at one point if I was going to CBS -- and for the life of me I don’t know where that came from. So, no, I’m committed here. [My wife], Kathy, and I, we love the community. The people here have been great to us. We like it here.
“Now the other reality is that, again my birthday is tomorrow, I’ll be 64 by the way, so I have some kicking to do still. But this is my last -- I’ve said -- great adventure. This is my last job, and it’s my hope and what I really want to do is make sure that this thing is turned around and going in the right direction, so I can come in here and we can talk about those things before I ever think about retiring. I am sorry that that came up. Maybe a little bit of what I’m gonna try and do [in terms of being more public] is a reaction to that ‘cause I felt about that. People that know me and people in the building, I think they know how much I care and how much I’m trying to get this thing to go in the right direction.”
Holmgren also addressed several other topics, including the team’s quarterback situation. Here are some more highlights from the news conference:To read more or comment...
Browns coach Pat Shurmur met with reporters today after an organized team activity practice. Here is a transcript from the news conference:
(Opening statement)- “It’s Week four. I thought there was good work out there today coming back off of kind of a four day weekend. I thought it was a little bit sloppy, but the effort was great. I think they will all agree with me there are some areas that we can get better, but I think they practiced hard, they practiced smart. I was pleased with what we tried to get done, and we’ll come out tomorrow and get one day better. I know you guys won’t be with us here for the next three days, but we have three more of these and then the structured teamwork prior to training camp will be completed. They, of course, will continue to fine tune their conditioning through the summer. The rookies will be here, as you know, for a couple more weeks for their little symposium and then we’ll get after it. For those of you I won’t see, enjoy your summer, and we’ll see you back here during training camp I’m sure.”To read more or comment...
The Browns held an organized team activity practice today. They’ll continue to practice each day until they wrap up OTAs on Friday, but today’s session was the last one open to media. Here are some highlights from practice and subsequent interviews:
Who’s the No. 2 quarterback?
It’s no secret Browns coach Pat Shurmur is expected to name rookie Brandon Weeden the team’s starting quarterback at some point, but the competition to become the No. 2 quarterback on the depth chart isn’t as clear.
Will it be Colt McCoy or Seneca Wallace?To read more or comment...
Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden reiterated this afternoon that he will sign his rookie contract before training camp starts in late July.
Weeden, the 22nd overall pick, and running back Trent Richardson, the third overall pick, are the only members of the Browns’ 2012 draft class who have yet to sign their rookie deals. Of course, they’re also the team’s only first-round selections this year.
“I’m ready to sign it,” Weeden told the Beacon Journal today during the 13th annual Cleveland Browns Foundation Golf Tournament at Firestone Country Club. “I’m not gonna miss any time. I’m gonna sign before [training] camp. It’s just nitpick stuff, but we’ll get it done. I’ll get it done.”
Richardson also believes his deal is close to being finalized.
“As far as the business side, I think it’s pretty much wrapped up,” Richardson told 92.3 The Fan today during the golf outing. “I think everything is pretty much done. There’s just some language in there that they have to get done. But as far as business-wise, it’s pretty much done.”To read more or comment...
Browns linebacker Scott Fujita's chances of having his three-game suspension overturned seemingly continue to decrease.
Arbitrator Shyam Das has ruled in the NFL’s favor and dismissed one of the NFL Players Association’s grievances in the New Orleans Saints’ bounty case, league spokesman Greg Aiello announced this afternoon via Twitter.
The union argued that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell does not have the authority to discipline players for conduct that occurred before the new collective bargaining agreement was signed last August. Das sided with the league.
The union also sought to have appeals heard by Ted Cottrell and Art Shell, who are jointly appointed by the league and union to review discipline for on-field conduct, instead of Goodell. But as Pro Football Talk pointed out and Das explained in his decision, the NFLPA did not pursue that issue in the May 16 hearing. As a result, Das did not rule on it.To read more or comment...
In an interview this morning with The Dan Patrick Show, Browns quarterback Colt McCoy reiterated he doesn’t remember the vicious helmet-to-face mask hit he took from Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison Dec. 8 at Heinz Field. McCoy told reporters the same thing at his locker after the game.
McCoy told Patrick he has seen replays of the hit and he doesn't consider it a cheap shot.
McCoy suffered a concussion as a result of the blow, which he absorbed with about six minutes left in the fourth quarter of the Browns’ 14-3 loss. Controversy ensued because McCoy missed two plays, then re-entered the game without the Browns’ medical staff testing him for a concussion on the sideline.
McCoy missed the final three games last season because of lingering symptoms. Harrison received a one-game suspension.To read more or comment...
The Browns have shot down a rumor that the team might be for sale.
“The Cleveland Browns are not for sale,” team spokesman Neal Gulkis said this evening.
The rumor started this afternoon when Howard Eskin of 94 WIP and NBC 10 TV in Philadelphia tweeted that he heard the Browns may be for sale.
Eskin further explained his tweet in a radio interview with 92.3 The Fan in Cleveland.To read more or comment...
Browns coach Pat Shurmur met with reporters today after the team held its final practice of mandatory minicamp. Here is a transcript from the news conference:
(Opening statement)- “It’s another great weather day. I think the heat helped a little bit. I saw a couple guys pushing through it, although it’s not that hot. I think when they got moving around, it helped them. It gives them a little taste before we get to training camp. They competed well. I think we are making steady progress, which is what we need to do at this point in the year. I feel good about having one week of work left. We have four OTAs as you know, which will be next week Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Then really the offseason portion of this, it seems like it’s gone quickly, it will be completed with the rookies continuing here for just a couple more weeks before we go to training camp. I my mind I think we are moving along as scheduled. I feel good about the work that’s getting done. I see guys getting better, and I think that’s the important part.”
(On telling to the defense to back off during drills today)- “I just wanted to make sure we are getting our work done and being safe. That’s all.”
(On naming the starting quarterback at the end of OTAs)- “The guys that will be playing quarterback are out there getting their practice in. I will name a starter at some point here. Beyond that, I mentioned yesterday, naming a starter sooner than later is a good thing. In my opinion, the guys that we’re all talking and thinking about are out there working with the players that they’re going to play with in the games, so I think at this point I’ve got nothing really to add to yesterday.”
(On what he is waiting to see before he names a starter)- “I want to see a good body of work here through the offseason. I’ll decide at some point who our starter is, and I think that’s what you’re looking for. Unfortunately, you don’t always get real game situation, or as much as you might like to make those decisions, but we’ll see.”To read more or comment...
The Browns wrapped up their mandatory full-squad minicamp today. Here are some highlights from practice and subsequent interviews:
A day after Browns coach Pat Shurmur said he wants to name a starting quarterback “sooner than later,” he was asked what he would like to see before he makes his decision.
“I want to see a good body of work here through the offseason, and I’ll decide at some point who our starter is,” Shurmur said.
Of course, rookie Brandon Weeden is expected to be Shurmur’s choice. Weeden, the 22nd overall pick in this year’s draft, has taken the majority of the first-team snaps throughout organized team activities and minicamp.
“He’s getting more reps than anybody at this point,” Shurmur said.To read more or comment...
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will hear the appeals of Browns linebacker Scott Fujita and the other players suspended for their alleged roles in the New Orleans Saints’ bounty scandal on June 18, Steve Wyche of NFL.com reported today.
The NFL has set the date, according to the report, even though arbitrator Shyam Das has not yet ruled on one of the NFL Players Association’s grievances against league. The union argues that Goodell does not have the authority to punish players for conduct that occurred before the new collective bargaining agreement was signed last August and that Ted Cottrell and Art Shell, who are jointly appointed by the league and union to review discipline for on-field conduct, should rule on appeals instead of Goodell.
"Pending a ruling from arbitrator Shyam Das, we are not commenting on the appeals process," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello wrote in an e-mail response to the Beacon Journal.To read more or comment...
Browns coach Pat Shurmur met with reporters this morning before his team practiced during the second day of its mandatory minicamp. Here is a transcript from the news conference:
(Opening statement)- “It’s day two and I think the guys responded well yesterday to the new procedure of how we do our minicamps based on the new rules and we’ll just repeat it today. The energy level was good in the walkthrough and we will go out there and compete and get better.”
(On what he has seen out of Mitchell Schwartz and his intelligence level)- “I think he’s very intelligent. He’s very technically sound. He’s a big-body guy, but he responds well, at lease it looks like, to some of the speed rush that we’ve seen from our guys. He’s done a good job with that and then I think he understands the concepts pretty well and it’s showing up in his play.”To read more or comment...
The Browns continued their mandatory full-squad minicamp today. Here are some highlights from practice and subsequent interviews:
On a mission
Running back Brandon Jackson is determined to make up for lost time after missing the entire 2011 regular season with torn ligaments in his big toe.
“It was very frustrating,” Jackson said this afternoon after practice. “I felt like I kind of failed them and just coming up this year, I’ve got a lot of things that need to be done. I have a lot of goals that need to be met. I’m gonna do whatever it takes to meet them.”To read more or comment...
Browns coach Pat Shurmur met with reporters this morning after the team held a walk-through session. The team will practice at 1 p.m. today as it continues its mandatory minicamp. Here are some of the highlights from Shurmur’s news conference:
Naming the starting QB
It’s no secret that all signs are pointing to rookie Brandon Weeden, the 22nd overall pick in this year’s draft, becoming the starting quarterback for the Browns before the start of the 2012 season.
But when does Shurmur want to formally name a starting quarterback?
“Sooner than later,” Shurmur said. “I think once we’ve made a decision that’s the deal I think you want to try to [name a starter]. If you know that he’s gonna be your guy, then make it happen, so everybody gets comfortable working with that guy all the time.To read more or comment...
Browns coach Pat Shurmur met with reporters this morning before his team practiced during mandatory minicamp. Here is a transcript from the news conference:
(Opening statement)- “It’s minicamp, we’ve got everybody here and most everybody will compete. It will be a good setting for our guys after having six OTAs. We went back and we we’ll revisit all of the things we’ve done in the six OTAs and try to work on the details and get better. Again, I would encourage you that when you’re watching, the first thing you’re going to want to do is get out there who is starting the drills. I would encourage you to hold off on that. There are just a bunch of guys out here trying to get better.”
(On if Phil Dawson is here)- “Everybody is here.”
(On what he meant when he said most everyone was competing)- “There are a couple of guys that are dealing with their injuries and that is about it. Everybody that is healthy and able to go will be out there.”
(On why he is so optimistic about the receivers)- “I think we got some guys that, number one, that are some good players. I think they have all had a chance now to play a year in the system and then have an offseason to improve their game. Then we have added some young players who I think are going to develop into good players. For all of those reasons I think they will be better and productive. Then I think as you get more efficient quarterback play, I think it all ties together with a good running game, I think that all plays together.”To read more or comment...
The Browns began their mandatory full-squad minicamp today. Here are some highlights from practice and subsequent interviews:
Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden said he’s way more comfortable now than he was when the team started practicing last month.
“I’m leap years farther along right now than I was obviously Day 1, Day 2,” Weeden said. “I think even through rookie minicamp, I think where I’m at right now I look like two totally two different quarterbacks. My footwork [is better]. You can tell I’m processing stuff a little bit faster. I’m not thinking quite as much. That’s the thing about this system, in particular playing quarterback, when you stop thinking so much, when you can just react and go through your reads – one, two, three, to your back – that’s when you start moving the ball down the field and start getting completions and first downs.”
Weeden took the first reps with the first-team offense this afternoon. He spent the majority of practice working with the first unit, though quarterback Colt McCoy took some first-team reps toward the end of practice.To read more or comment...
Browns coach Pat Shurmur met with reporters this morning after the team held a walk-through session. The team will practice at 1 p.m. today. Here are some of the highlights from Shurmur’s news conference:
Scott Fujita focused
Linebacker Scott Fujita has become enveloped by the New Orleans Saints’ bounty scandal this offseason, but Browns coach Pat Shurmur doesn’t believe Fujita is letting the distractions affect his work.
“My interaction with Scott has been good,” Shurmur said. “He’s about his business, and I don’t see that being a distraction. I think we as people, we all have things happening in the background to our jobs. So as professionals, we learn how to deal with that so that it doesn’t affect what we do.”
Fujita, who played for the Saints from 2006-09, has been suspended three games for his alleged role in the scandal, but he has repeatedly denied the NFL’s accusations that he contributed money to a pool that paid players for intentionally trying to injure opponents. Fujita has reserved the right to appeal his suspension pending the outcome of the NFL Players Association’s grievances against the league. Arbitrator Stephen Burbank rejected one of the union’s grievances on Monday, ruling NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has the authority to discipline Fujita and others for the alleged conduct.To read more or comment...
Browns linebacker Scott Fujita has reserved the right to appeal his three-game suspension for his alleged role in the New Orleans Saints’ bounty scandal pending the outcome of the NFL Players Association’s grievances against the league.
A ruling on one of those grievances was made public this morning.
Special Master Stephen Burbank has rejected the union’s argument that under the collective bargaining agreement NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell does not have jurisdiction to discipline players for the alleged conduct. The union argued that Burbank, not Goodell, has the authority to punish players for alleged salary-cap violations.To read more or comment...
According to a 10,000-plus word essay documentary filmmaker Sean Pamphilon published Thursday on his website, Browns linebacker Scott Fujita urged the public release of the audiotape on which former New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams encouraged his players to target members of the San Francisco 49ers with the intent to injure them.
Fujita has not responded to an e-mail from the Beacon Journal seeking comment about Pamphilon’s essay.
Fujita, who played for the Saints from 2006-09 before signing with the Browns, received a three-game suspension from the NFL for his alleged role in the Saints’ bounty scandal. He has repeatedly denied the league’s accusations that he contributed money to a pool that paid players to intentionally hurt opponents. Fujita has reserved the right to appeal his suspension, pending the outcome of the NFL Players Association’s grievances against the league regarding Commissioner Roger Goodell’s authority to determine punishment for the alleged conduct and rule on any appeals.
Here are some points Pamphilon asserts in his essay (click here to read it):To read more or comment...