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Browns training camp: Transcript from news conference with coach Rob Chudzinski

By Nate Ulrich Published: August 6, 2013

Browns coach Rob Chudzinski met with reporters today after the 11th full-squad practice of training camp. Here is a transcript from the news conference:

Opening statement: “An injury report: Shawn Lauvao had suffered an ankle injury yesterday. He is still getting evaluated medically and I will get you updates as I get them tomorrow. Today, we had a chance to shift our focus toward St. Louis, giving our guys some looks, studying the tapes and giving them a chance to work against some of the different things St. Louis may be doing that are different than they are seeing on a day-to-day basis from our offense and from our defense. It will be good to get a chance to get out on the field to see our guys against different competition, against different people. We are looking forward to that opportunity. We have a plan for the game in terms of playing. We are going to play our starters for the most part, for about a quarter. That may vary from individual to individual. We will get our second group in there for the second quarter and third quarter. Some will be done at halftime and some will go forward in the third quarter. Fourth quarter we will get some of our third group in there. I will give you more details tomorrow on specific individuals as we get more medical information. That is our general plan and again, I will get in the specifics of people and different playing about playing them tomorrow when I get more information on that.”

On any problem with Jason Pinkston walking off the field (excused to attend a funeral): “No, there’s no problem. No problem at all.”

On what he likes about Garrett Gilkey: “What I like and what we saw was a big guy who can really move his feet well. Where he is coming from, it’s a big adjustment. He played tackle, so moving to guard is usually an adjustment for guys. The level of competition of what he is seeing and the offense is a lot more than what he did in college. There are three things that usually young guys coming from smaller schools have adjustments to do. I have been pleased with what he is doing; he is a guy who has improved. He just needs to keep working.”

On Gilkey holding his own physically: “He has. A lot of times it’s a matter of technique going against guys who have been in the league for so long who are physically equal or a little bit ahead of him.  It’s a matter of learning the techniques and getting better at those. He should be fine.”

On Dion Lewis playing well: “He’s had a good camp. He’s really showing a lot. He’s been a playmaker and shows good vision, running skills, good demonstration of catching the ball. So, I’m looking forward to seeing him in the game. We are working him on special teams as a kick returner, as well. I am excited to see what he does.”

On punting competition: “It’s been a good competition. Both of those guys are hitting the ball well. They are neck and neck right now. So, what they do in the games, we’ll be alternating those guys back and forth so they get their kicks in. We will see where it goes from there but this will be a big part of the evaluation.”

On Tashaun Gipson being back from the shoulder injury: “He’s come along pretty well. We will look at him and talk about him medically to see where he is at. He practiced today and did everything. We will let you know tomorrow on that.”

On what Gipson has to offer: “Good athlete, real solid guy, understands the defense, can make calls; just a good football player.”

On Christian Yount’s contract extension: “At that position you have to be perfect. He’s proven he has been a valuable part of the team. You never know how valuable those guys are until you don’t have one that can get the snap back, and I’ve been there before. We’re happy to have Christian as a part of our organization for a long time and he’s earned it.”

On being back on the field (not in the box) Thursday, his unofficial debut as a head coach: “Well, I have been there before. Being involved with the coaches I’ve been involved with, whether I was up in the box or not, I have been able to be a part of those decisions and understanding the different situations in games that come up; it’s something I have been real fortunate, to be around really good head coaches that I can learn from along the way. Certainly, Norv (Turner) is a guy I have talked to. I have a book about this thick that’s full of different scenarios that over the course of summer, I had a chance to look at them and study the situations that would come up and think through how I would handle them. At the end of the day, it’s not easy. There are things that come up that can go either way. You want to have good reasons for what you do. Ultimately, it’s decided whether it was a good decision or not by whether it works. You are looking to have the right reasons to make those decisions.”

On the logistics of the sideline during games, after some previous coaches tripped over wires: “Well, I think we have a wireless system, so that won’t be a problem.  I think the biggest thing, and one of the things that is important to me, is having two coordinators calling the game that you have faith in. I can focus more on game management, whether that’s situational calls, whether that’s replay, whether it’s timeouts. Those are the big things that come up. Hopefully, guys that I trust and the way I do with our coordinators here, that will be a good help. I won’t be tripping over any wires.”

On having someone in the press box when it comes to challenging plays: “Yes. We have a system set up of guys looking from up top. Certainly, Norv and Ray (Horton) will be up in the box and they will have a good look at some of the replays. We will also have a guy specified to do that and then down on the field between myself and some other eyes. Hopefully we have it all covered.”

On giving suggestions to Norv Turner on offense: “No. I’ll have things that I’ll have in mind as things go on. One of the things I know, as a coordinator and a play-caller, you get in a groove, you get in a thought process, setting things up for later. Interfering too much I do not want to do, but at the same time, there’s a right time for suggestions and things like that, that hopefully I’ll pick out the right time for those.”

On Brandon Weeden: “Well I’m not sure of how much you see, so I can’t answer that part of it. A lot of what you see behind the scenes understands what he’s been told or talked to about. What things have been stressed and seeing what has been done on the field and making corrections, coming back. A lot more of it is behind the scenes. For me, not always being in the quarterback meeting, I have to make sure that I know what those things are as well. That is something I learned along the way in the league.”

On how Weeden is performing compared to other players: “I don’t know what the assessment of him is. I’ve seen progress and that is what I want to see and getting into the preseason games. Ultimately, performing and seeing how much he can transfer from the practice field to the game is critical.”

On Dion Lewis’ size making him a 15-carry player or a special-teams player: “I don’t really classify guys that way. I have been fortunate enough to be around some small guys who were able to carry the load. That is an individual thing. I see Dion being effective, not just as your traditional change-of-pace guy where you are always doing stuff outside, but he can run inside. He has good vision and he is a good runner overall, I think whatever role; he can fill a number of roles.”

On whether Trent Richardson will play Thursday: “Just like everybody else, we are going to sit down with them, get more information and I’ll let you guys know tomorrow.”

On the plan for Thursday for Richardson: “We will talk to all the players that are in that situation. Whether they play or don’t play, we will assess it and do the smart thing. We will communicate that with him.”

On coming in with a script of plays: “We will. Basically, we are going to be going in with our base offense, base defense, and our base calls. Special teams as well, and see how are guys execute them. Preseason, we will always hold a little bit back for the regular season. We are in a situation where guys are learning an offense, defense and special teams and so we want to see how they are going to execute our base package.”

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