Browns coach Rob Chudzinski said today he will attend the team’s private workout with West Virginia University’s Geno Smith, the top-rated quarterback in this year’s draft.
Chudzinski met with reporters at the NFL owners meeting in Phoenix and addressed several topics during an hour-long interview with reporters. The competition Chudzinski said he wants to create for incumbent starting quarterback Brandon Weeden dominated the discussion as it usually does.
Chudzinski said whoever is on the roster, including Colt McCoy and Thaddeus Lewis, would get opportunities to compete, and he has no time table set for naming a starter.
The Browns have the sixth overall pick in the draft, which runs April 25-27. But they’re not focused on using it on a quarterback, CEO Joe Banner said Monday. However, the Browns will do their due diligence with Smith, giving him a chance to demand further consideration.
The Browns have yet to acquire competition for Weeden via free agency. Former Browns quarterback Derek Anderson was an option, but he has re-signed with the Carolina Panthers, who employed Chudzinski as their offensive coordinator the past two years.
“At that particular time, [signing Anderson] just wasn’t the right thing for us to do,” Chudzinski said. “I’ll leave it at that.”
Chudzinski also said recently signing outside linebackers Paul Kruger and Quentin Groves does “not necessarily” preclude the Browns from drafting a pass rusher.
Chudzinski said he knew what kind of defense he wanted the Browns to use even before he hired defensive coordinator Ray Horton.
“I’ve always preferred or liked a 3-4 defense, the attacking style with multiple fronts,” Chudzinski said.
Chudzinski said he believes Josh Gordon has the potential to evolve into legitimate No. 1 wide receiver.
“Josh is a talented guy,” Chudzinski said. “He has all the tools to be a solid No. 1 receiver in this league.”
Chudzinski also likes wide receiver Greg Little’s versatility and believes he can be effective in the slot or on the outside.
But Gordon and Little have only three seasons of NFL experience combined, and the receiving corps is young as a whole.
“Would you like a veteran guy?” Chudzinski said. “Absolutely. You like experience and you like guys having experience. … Sometimes the guys that don’t have a big background and haven’t played a lot learn quick or listen more and do exactly what you need them to do, so there’s an advantage to that as well.”