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Video: 49ers S Eric Reid talks about Browns rookie, former LSU teammate Barkevious Mingo

By Ryan Lewis Published: June 28, 2013

San Francisco 49ers safety Eric Reid met with reporters today during the NFL Rookie Symposium to talk about Browns rookie outside linebacker Barkevious Mingo, his former teammate at Louisiana State University.

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Updated: Browns cut rookie LB Ausar Walcott after he was charged with attempted murder

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 26, 2013

The Browns cut undrafted rookie linebacker Ausar Walcott today after he was arrested and charged with attempted murder Tuesday in New Jersey, the team announced.

Walcott was arrested for allegedly punching a man outside a bar in Passaic, N.J., the Record newspaper reported.

The Browns signed Walcott, a native of Hackensack, N.J., on May 13 after he tried out for the team during its rookie minicamp.

The Browns issued the following statement this morning: "We are aware of the situation. This is a pending legal matter, and we will not comment."

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Browns legend Jim Brown cancels NFL Rookie Symposium appearance because of illness, league announces

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 25, 2013

Browns special adviser and legendary running back Jim Brown has canceled an NFL Rookie Symposium speaking engagement scheduled for Wednesday at the Pro Football Hall of Fame because of an illness, the league announced this afternoon in a media advisory.

The advisory did not specify the nature of Brown’s illness, but it's not believed to be serious. Brown, 77, had been traveling a lot recently, and the frequent trips caused him to become fatigued, he said in a statement.

"I am very sorry that I am unable to attend tomorrow’s Hall of Fame session with the rookie class," Brown said in the statement. "Our young NFL players are very dear to me, but due to my extensive travels of late, I am extremely tired and need to rest. I look forward to returning to Ohio this summer for all of the festivities as we celebrate 50 years of the Pro Football Hall of Fame."

Brown was scheduled to conduct a history lesson for the AFC rookies Wednesday when they visit the Hall of Fame in Canton. Fellow Hall of Famer Mike Haynes is scheduled to replace Brown.

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Video: Browns rookie Barkevious Mingo shares thoughts on Jarvis Jones, NFL Rookie Symposium and more

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 25, 2013

Browns outside linebacker Barkevious Mingo and the rest of the drafted rookies from the AFC participated in a PLAY 60 youth football clinic today in Berea as part of the NFL Rookie Symposium. Mingo met with reporters during the clinic and addressed several topics, including comparisons between himself and Pittsburgh Steelers rookie outside linebacker Jarvis Jones.

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Browns name Zak Gilbert their director of communications

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 24, 2013

The Browns have hired Zak Gilbert as their director of communications, the team announced tonight.

Gilbert spent this past season serving as the director of media relations for the Oakland Raiders.

He replaces former Browns vice president of media relations Neal Gulkis, whom the organization let go in May. Gulkis, who had been with the Browns since 2009, spent his last day with the team on Friday.

Raiders owner Mark Davis fired Gilbert on June 1. Citing team sources, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Mark Davis was unhappy with a story by Sports Illustrated’s Jim Trotter that published in April and portrayed General Manager Reggie McKenzie in a positive light but was critical of Mark Davis and his father, late owner Al Davis.

Before his one season with the Raiders, Gilbert worked as director of athletic media relations at Colorado State University (2007-12). His resume also includes jobs with the Green Bay Packers (2001-07) and Colorado Rockies (1998-2001) and internships with the Denver Broncos (1997) and his alma mater, the University of Colorado (1994-97).

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Browns add five scouts to their player personnel department

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 19, 2013

The Browns announced five additions to their player personnel department this afternoon, naming Frank Edgerly their new senior pro scout and Brent Blaylock, Brendan Donovan, Matthew Manocherian and Patrick Moore their new college scouts.

With CEO Joe Banner and General Manager Mike Lombardi in charge, the new regime shook up its player personnel department shortly after the NFL Draft in late April.

The Browns fired former director of college scouting John Spytek and pro scouts A.J. Durso and Tom Headlee. They also Browns parted ways with senior national scout Pat Roberts, whose contract had expired, and college area scouts Donovan Beidelschies and David Hinson. Another college area scout, Bob Welton, left the Browns before the draft to become the University of Tennessee football program’s director of player personnel.

Here is information about each of the Browns’ new scouts provided in a news release from the team:

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Video: Browns rookie Barkevious Mingo praises Leon McFadden, says Ray Horton has strange personality

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 18, 2013

Outside linebacker Barkevious Mingo praised cornerback Leon McFadden and said defensive coordinator Ray Horton "has a very strange personality" while speaking to reporters today as the Browns' rookie class participated in a youth football camp at FirstEnergy Stadium.

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Video: Browns rookie cornerback Leon McFadden discusses his bid for starting job

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 18, 2013

Browns cornerback Leon McFadden discussed his bid for a starting job and his transition to the NFL as the team's rookie class participated in a youth football camp today at FirstEnergy Stadium.

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Browns notes: Jamoris Slaughter says he’s clear to practice after rupturing Achilles last year

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 18, 2013

Browns rookie free safety Jamoris Slaughter is ready to take the next major step in his comeback attempt -- and his young career.

Slaughter has been sidelined this offseason while rehabilitating from a ruptured left Achilles’ tendon he suffered last year as a senior at Notre Dame, but he said today that he’s been medically cleared to practice when training camp begins July 25.

Slaughter, a sixth-round pick in this year’s draft who believes he would’ve been selected earlier if his injury hadn’t occurred, doesn’t expect to be limited at all.

“I'm cleared at this point to do everything, so I've been feeling really good,” Slaughter said today as the Browns' rookie class participated in a youth football clinic at FirstEnergy Stadium. “I've been working out hard with the team, just waiting to get back for training camp.”

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Browns announce cancellation of 'Fan Kickoff Concert' featuring Bon Jovi, Michael Stanley

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 17, 2013

The Browns have announced they are canceling the "Fan Kickoff Concert" that was scheduled for July 14 at FirstEnergy Stadium.

No explanation for the cancellation of the event, which was to feature Bon Jovi and Michael Stanley, was given. A Browns spokesman referred questions to Bon Jovi's publicist, Ken Sunshine, who couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

The team said for refund information, ticket holders should return to their original point of purchase.

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Browns unveil 2013 training camp schedule

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 13, 2013

The Browns announced 15 practices will be free and open to the public this year during training camp.

The first full-squad practice is scheduled to be held July 25. Practices will be in the evening this year.

Here is the news release from the team:

The Cleveland Browns have announced the dates and times of their training camp practices which are open to the public this year. Admission to all practice sessions held at the team’s Berea training facility is free. Fans can enter the facility through the Beech Street entrance. Parking is available on the campus of Baldwin-Wallace University near the intersection of Beech Street and Bagley Road. Gates open one prior to the start of all practice sessions. In all, 15 practices will be open to the public in 2013, a total which includes a Family Night practice at FirstEnergy Stadium on Saturday, August 3 starting at 6:30 p.m. In addition to practice, Family Night will also feature fireworks and a laser show. Admission for Family Night is free as well. Fans can call the Browns Training Camp Hotline at 877-6BROWNS (877-627-6967) for the latest information on practice times. Fans can also get the most up to date information at www.ClevelandBrowns.com, and on Facebook and Twitter.

Cleveland Browns Training Camp is presented by your Northeast Ohio Ford Dealers, in association with Cleveland Clinic.

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Source: Browns talked to agent of ex-Ravens fullback Vonta Leach, but not interested in signing him

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 13, 2013

Updated at 11:30 a.m. June 13

The Browns spoke to the agent of free-agent fullback Vonta Leach, but they are not interested in signing him, a league source confirmed for the Beacon Journal this morning.

Leach's agent, Ralph Vitolo, told the Beacon Journal in an email that he talked to Browns General Manager Mike Lombardi on Wednesday, but the two sides did not make plans for Leach to visit Cleveland. If the Browns wanted to sign Leach, he would have a visit set up by now.

On Wednesday, Vitolo told Fox 26, a TV station in Houston, that seven teams expressed interest in Leach.

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Browns WR Josh Gordon suspended 2 games, fined for violating NFL’s substance-abuse policy

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 7, 2013

Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon has been suspended without pay for the first two regular-season games of 2013 and fined two additional game checks for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, a league spokesperson announced in a statement this afternoon.

The NFL will not reveal how Gordon violated its policy because of an agreement it has in place with the NFL Players Association.

Gordon failed three marijuana tests in college, two at Baylor University and another at the University of Utah, and a rumor about a Browns player facing a suspension because of a failed drug test had recently been circulating online and on local sports-talk radio shows.

But in a statement released by the Browns today after news of the suspension broke, Gordon blamed his failed drug test on prescribed antibiotics and cough medicine containing codeine.

"In February, I was diagnosed with strep throat for which a doctor prescribed antibiotics and cough medicine," Gordon said in the statement. "Apparently, the medicine I took contained codeine, which is prohibited by the NFL policy. The policy terms are strict about unintentional ingestion, but the NFL has not imposed the maximum punishment in light of the facts of my case. Therefore, I have chosen to be immediately accountable for the situation. I sincerely apologize for the impact on my team, coaches, and Browns fans. I look forward to working hard in training camp and preseason, and contributing immediately when I return in Week 3."

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Browns sign cornerback Vernon Kearney, waive safety Prince Miller

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 6, 2013

The Browns signed cornerback Vernon Kearney and waived safety Prince Miller, the team announced today.

Kearney participated in the Browns’ three-day mandatory minicamp this week on a tryout basis. The Buffalo Bills signed him as an undrafted free agent April 29 and waived him May 30.

The 6-foot-2, 185-pound Kearney played wide receiver during his first two seasons at Lane College before switching to defensive back. As a junior, he tallied 21 tackles and seven pass break-ups before registering 24 tackles, two interceptions, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery as a senior.

Miller appeared in two games with the Browns last season. He played special teams and did not record any statistics.

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Transcript from news conference with Browns coach Rob Chudzinski

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 6, 2013

Browns coach Rob Chudzinski met with reporters today following the final practice of the team's three-day mandatory minicamp. Here is a transcript from the news conference:

(Opening statement)- “We wrapped it up sort of like we started it out, indoors here this last day. Today as you saw we had the chance to work some more situations. We hit some goal line and some additional red zone and we did some move the ball periods where we were using the play clock and trying to simulate game-type situations. We got everyone on the sidelines for that. That has been good work for us. As far as the schedule goes for the next few weeks, we will still have the rookies so they will still be around in the rookie program. They will get a chance to lift, workout and go through some of the rookie educational programs that we have for them as well as some individual meetings with their coaches. Going back, April 1 is when we first got a chance to start hanging out and being with our guys, getting a chance to coach them, get to know them. I’m really pleased with the progress that we have made since then. Going back and starting out with Brad Roll in the strength room. From a conditioning standpoint, we have has some tremendous gains from some guys in there. He has done a great job with them. Then we got with the individual position coaches, us getting to know them and being able to have a chance to see them on the field and evaluate them to a certain degree as much as you can in that section of time. Them getting to know us, understanding not only the system but what we are expecting from them as members of the Cleveland Browns – how we practice, how we prepare and what we want from a culture standpoint. I am pleased with the progress that we have made. We are on the right track. We have a lot of work to do. We still have a long ways to go. There will be bumps in the road as we know, but we will continue along and stay on course.”

(On the theme for training camp and what it will be like)- “The thing we want to do with training camp that we really haven’t done or have been able to do out here is be able to see the physical part of football. Seeing the toughness and pushing through some of those things. Guys getting a chance to really compete physically, that will be the theme and that will be what we are trying to do along with bring guys along from an execution standpoint.”

(On if there will be roster changes before camp)- “We will look at it and that is an ongoing continuous process. I think we have a better grasp of our guys at this point to a certain degree. I think the lines are the toughest place to evaluate, the guys up front. More from a skill standpoint, I think you have a little bit better idea of that. We will always be looking to improve our roster.”

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Browns notes: QB Brandon Weeden says he’s right where he wants to be as minicamp ends

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 6, 2013

Although Browns coach Rob Chudzinski isn’t ready to name a starting quarterback, it’s clearly Brandon Weeden’s job to lose.

“I don’t want that to change, or else it’d be tough,” Weeden said this afternoon following practice. “I think I’m still competing, competing every day and competing with myself. So I’m worried about me."

Weeden took all the reps with the first-team offense throughout organized team activities and the team’s three-day mandatory minicamp, which ended today. Jason Campbell took the majority of the reps with the second unit, but third-stringer Brian Hoyer received some as well.

In other words, the Browns’ quarterback competition is unfolding the way Weeden had hoped it would.

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Transcript from news conference with Browns coach Rob Chudzinski

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 5, 2013

Browns coach Rob Chudzinski met with reporters today after the second practice of mandatory minicamp. Here is a transcript from the news conference:

(Opening statement)- “I’m pleased with the last two days of work. Guys have come out here and are playing fast. As I mentioned yesterday, we are not really installing anything new. We have all the install in up to this point. We are just going out and looking for execution, guys playing fast, understanding what to do, cutting down on the mental errors from earlier in OTAs that we might have had and those types of things. As you saw, today we focused on the two minute drill and red zone area. We are really getting a lot of good work in those two areas. We will finish up tomorrow and I am looking forward to getting back in training camp with all the fans out here next time.”

(On if he feels like they will be in good shape for the start of camp after tomorrow)- “I do. From the mental standpoint, installing our systems - offensively, defensively, special teams – I think the guys have gotten a good grasp of what we are doing. The nut and bolts, the basic things are in and we will hopefully be able to build from there when we get back.”

(On if Ray Horton and Norv Turner have helped them keep a fast tempo at practice)- “That is something we talked about in the offseason in getting ready to go with practices – what we want to be and how we want to conduct practices. The experiences that those guys have had have helped in a lot of ways.”

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Browns minicamp notes: RB Trent Richardson says he'll return from injury by start of training camp

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 5, 2013

Browns running back Trent Richardson said he expects to be ready for the first day of training camp July 25 despite sitting out the team’s three-day minicamp this week with a strained muscle in his right shin.

“I still expect to be out there day one,” Richardson said today after practice. “People are saying I’ve got another injury, and it’s farther than what people are saying it is. And no it’s not. Coach got me out for precautionary reasons. It’s nothing that big to worry about.”

Richardson’s comments contradict a report from WKNR (850-AM) that stated the team told Richardson he’ll be out until August and that it fears his injury could develop into a stress fracture.

The report also stated that Richardson has been taking medication for migraines and that the medication combined with not being able to do a full weight-lifting program has caused him to lose weight during the past two weeks.

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Video: Browns RB Trent Richardson says he expects to return from injury by start of training camp

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 5, 2013

Browns running back Trent Richardson met with reporters today after practice and said he expects to return to action by the start of the team's training camp, which begins July 25.

Richardson, the third overall pick in last year's draft, is sitting out the Browns' mandatory minicamp this week with a strained muscle in his right shin.

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Transcript from news conference with Browns coach Rob Chudzinski

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 4, 2013

Browns coach Rob Chudzinski met with reporters today after the first practice of the team's mandatory minicamp. Here is a transcript from the news conference:

(Opening statement) – “Good afternoon everybody. I’ll just give you a little bit of the schedule for minicamp. We’ll practice in the mornings then come back and watch and review the practice tape with the guys. Then do an install in the afternoon and have a walk-thru. It’s a little bit different than a typical training camp day. At this time of year, we are going to practice in the morning, come back with a walk-thru in the afternoon and then practice again in the morning. We will follow that schedule throughout the minicamp. We are looking really from a goal standpoint at this minicamp. We’ve installed all of our things up until now during the course of OTAs and in the spring so we are not installing anything new for these guys during this minicamp. It’s basically a review. We covered first, second and third down situations today. We did a little bit of a move the ball situation where guys were off on the side just to simulate a little bit more of a game-like situation. From a tempo standpoint, all of those things are the same as OTAs. We got some good work today, I am pleased with that and we will come back tomorrow and get some red zone and two minute during practice. As far as injuries today, we held Trent (Richardson) and we will hold him for the rest of minicamp as more of a precautionary measure. Jordan Norwood has a hamstring - we held him as well. The rest of the guys pretty much have been the same. We have been working Jordan Cameron back. He’s been working back in to practice just fine.”

(On if the organization is concerned that Trent Richardson’s injury could get worse) – “We are just holding him. He could have gone these next couple days if necessary, but we are just being real precautionary about it. We don’t want the muscle strain to get any worse.”

(On if they are just making sure Richardson is ready for preseason games and Week One of the season) – “That he has a full summer to get ready and prepare and get ready for the season and for camp.”

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Browns add two radio affiliates in Akron

By Ron Ledgard Published: June 4, 2013

The Browns announced two Akron radio stations (WAKR 1590-AM and WONE 97.5-FM) will be part of the team's radio network. So far, 10 stations are part of the network.

Here is the release from the team:

Five stations in three major Ohio markets will be joining the PNC Bank Cleveland Browns Radio Network, it was announced today. These affiliates are from the Rubber City Radio Group in Akron (1590 AM WAKR and 97.5 FM WONE), the Cumulus Broadcasting Network in Youngstown (103 FM WYFM and 1240 AM WBBW) as well as News-Talk 1480 in Canton (WHBC-AM). These stations join existing affiliates in Toledo (107.7 FM WPFX) and Columbus (95.5 FM WZOH “The Game”) as well as the Browns flagship stations in Cleveland (ESPN 850 WKNR, 92.3 “The Fan” and 98.5 WNCX). The newest additions will air all Browns games – both preseason and regular season – and will also carry full pre- and post-game coverage, as well as a weekly in-season coach’s show.

“It is important that Browns fans in Akron, Canton and Youngstown are able to follow our team with the extensive programming that we will be offering,” said Browns President Alec Scheiner. “Both the Rubber City Radio Group and the Cumulus Broadcasting Network are the radio leaders in their respective regions. WHBC has a long and dedicated following in Canton and many people in that area have relied on them as their source of news for decades. We are thrilled to announce the addition of these top stations in Northeast Ohio and look forward to announcing additional affiliates in the near future to the PNC Bank Cleveland Browns Radio Network.”

2013 PNC Bank Cleveland Browns Radio Network (as of June 4)

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Browns minicamp notes: Rob Chudzinski expects Trent Richardson to return for start of training camp

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 4, 2013

Browns coach Rob Chudzinski said running back Trent Richardson will be sidelined for the entire three-day mandatory minicamp this week as he rehabilitates a strained muscle in his right shin, but Chudzinski expects Richardson to be ready for the start of training camp July 25.

“Yes, that’s my expectation,” Chudzinski said.

Chudzinski’s comments contradict a report from WKNR (850-AM) that stated Richardson will be out until August as the organization fears his injury could develop into a stress fracture. A member of the team’s public relations staff kept Richardson from addressing the media today after practice, saying he’ll speak Wednesday instead.

Richardson, who worked out on an exercise bike this morning at the start of practice, missed organized team activities the past two weeks. On May 30, Richardson said he suffered the injury while running during practice, but he downplayed the significance of it.

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Browns RB Trent Richardson sitting out minicamp with leg injury

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 4, 2013

Browns running back Trent Richardson isn’t practicing today as the team’s three-day mandatory minicamp begins because he has a strained muscle in his right shin, and WKNR (850-AM) reported this morning that Richardson will be out until August as the organization fears his injury could develop into a stress fracture.

Training camp begins in late July.

Richardson, who worked out on an exercise bike this morning at the start of practice, missed organized team activities the past two weeks. He said he suffered the injury while running during practice. Richardson, though, downplayed the significance of the injury last week while addressing the media.

“Ain’t no biggie,” Richardson said May 30. “Ain’t nothing to worry about. I could be out there, but they want to be cautious about it and just make sure I’m healthy when it’s time to be right and be right for [training] camp [in late July].”

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Former Browns special-teams ace Ray Ventrone signs with 49ers

By Nate Ulrich Published: June 3, 2013

Former Browns special-teams ace Ray Ventrone signed a one-year contract with the San Francisco 49ers today, the 49ers announced.

He’ll reunite with former Browns special teams coordinator Brad Seely and former Browns kicker Phil Dawson. He'll also once again be on the same team as former Browns coach Eric Mangini, who recently took a job with the 49ers as an offensive consultant.

Ventrone, 30, spent the past four seasons with the Browns, serving as a backup safety and tallying 31 tackles on special teams. In 2010, he was named a third alternate as a special teamer for the AFC Pro Bowl squad.

The 5-foot-10, 200-pound Ventrone also spent three seasons with the New England Patriots after entering the NFL in 2005 as an undrafted free agent from Villanova University. He became an unrestricted free agent in March.

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Former Browns coach Eric Mangini joins 49ers as consultant

By JANIE McCAULEY, AP Sports Writer Published: June 2, 2013

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The San Francisco 49ers have agreed to terms with former Browns coach Eric Mangini to be an offensive consultant for the NFC champions, a person with knowledge of the negotiations said Saturday.

Mangini will work on Jim Harbaugh's staff for the two-time reigning NFC West winners, the person said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the team had made no formal announcement.

With a defensive expertise and experience as an assistant on that side of the ball, Mangini might help game plan for opposing defenses in the new role. San Francisco lost 34-31 in the Super Bowl to the Baltimore Ravens in February after missing scoring chances in the waning moments.

Quarterback Colin Kaepernick's second-half rally fell short and the Niners were denied a sixth championship. Kaepernick missed three chances from the 5, throwing three straight incomplete passes intended for Michael Crabtree, who got tangled up with a defender on the final play but no holding was called — Harbaugh screamed from the sideline and signaled for a penalty.

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