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Cleveland Browns

Leave the diamonds at home

By Marla Ridenour Published: July 25, 2008

Impressions from training camp, Thursday, July 24

Excuse me if I'm old fashioned, but why was rookie tight end Martin Rucker wearing diamond stud earrings in both ears at the team's first practice in pads? Doesn't that hurt with a helmet on?

Receiver Travis Wilson continues to show improvement. The third-round pick in 2006 made a sliding catch of a Brady Quinn pass. Not sure he would have gone after that one last year.

The most entertaining assistant coach: Ted Daisher (special teams). The man can be heard no matter which practice field he's on and where you're standing. And he pulls no punches. When the morning drill started lethargically, Daisher said, ''Let's cut the B.S. and get lined up.'' His language may be a little salty, but is nowhere near as bad as former defensive coordinator Nick Saban, who had fans complaining about what their children were hearing during the Belichick regime.

In the morning, the linebackers seemed a little over-aggressive and for some reason their target was running back Jamal Lewis. Andra Davis appeared late with two knockdowns after short pass receptions, so Lewis took it out on Shantee Orr, putting him on the ground with a forearm. When the evening session started, defensive lineman Shaun Smith said during stretching, ''Please do not touch No. 31 (Lewis).''

Worst play of the morning: Third-string quarterback Ken Dorsey slips and falls after a handoff.

The young Browns seem more accountable for their actions already. When rookie linebacker Beau Bell dropped a ball in an interception drill that a coach threw right to him, he got down on the ground and did a few pushups. Later when running back Jerome Harrison missed a swing pass from Dorsey, he also did pushups.

Jason Wright missed the evening session with an undisclosed injury and spent part of the session riding the bike. He was close enough to see Bell stuff fullback Lawrence Vickers on a running play, which prompted Vickers to shove Bell. Wright laughed as he chastized Vickers for trying to start something.

It may be just my imagination, but the offense looks different when Derek Anderson and Brady Quinn are running team drills. Anderson always looks for the deep pass and is willing to wait for his receivers to get open. Most of Quinn's completions are dump passes to running backs or tight ends. Perhaps Quinn is only executing the plays that are called.

Pro Bowl special teamer Joshua Cribbs didn't look focused when fielding punts in the evening, but as a receiver he had a decent practice. His best catch was snatching a ball from Dorsey out of the air in traffic.

It's only one day of serious practice, but none of the young receivers have stood out in the battle for the No. 3 job. Wonder if the Browns would consider taking Keenan McCardell back. He's looking for a job and might be willing to return to the city where he started his career from 1992-95.

Player of the day: Kellen Winslow. Even though he's still knocking the rust off after a post-season knee cleanup, the tight end shows every day how special he is with his effort and superb performance. His teammates came out in shoulder pads and shorts in the evening, but he was in full gear as usual.


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