Cleveland Browns Head Coach Eric Mangini was non-committal about reports concerning Donte Stallworth's meeting with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and the possibility that he was seeking reinstatement by the league.
Stallworth served 24 days in jail after pleading guilty to DUI manslaughter. Stallworth prevented any civil action against him by reaching a settlement with the victim’s family.
When asked about the meeting Mangini said: ‘’I have no knowledge of that and at this point it’s a league matter.’’
As for any potential future with the team, Mangini said ‘’once the league makes its decision we’ll address it then.’’
The league would not confirm that a meeting between Stallworth and Goodell took place. A comment on Stallworth's status will be made when a decision is reached.
Edwards returns to practice with a new attitude?
Braylon Edwards said that he has but one thing on his mind this year even if he is heading into the final year of his contract - playing football.
‘’I just want to play football. (The media) ask those questions that have no relevance for winning games this year,’’ he said. ‘’All I care about is winning games and getting out of the shadow and getting everybody’s mindset off of last year.
‘’In this business, you’re only as good as your last game and last season. Everybody’s hard on us because of what we did last year. (If) we come out and win some games and go to the playoffs everybody will have forgot about last year…,so I don’t care about a contract right now.’’
Edwards flashed some of his playmaking potential early during the Browns morning practice, leaping for a touchdown pass that looked as if it were going to bounce off the helmet of defensive back Gerard Lawson. He got cheers from the crowd, but it also reminded him of a couple of things.
‘’Football is fun…I love competition and I love football, so being able to come out there and do that reminded me of why I am here, why I originally started playing football when I was 12,’’ Edwards said of the catch. ‘’That was fun. That was competition. The DB was in a good place and that’s what it’s going to take to get us better.’’
Fire starts on D
Something that was definitely missing in training camps under the last regime - fire. Passion. Excitement. You can't help but notice that is back this week. Coach Eric Mangini has players going full contact in some situations and all that fire returns the minute contact starts. Wednesday was a perfect example as the defense got worked up while practicing goal line stops.
Linebacker Eric Barton tracked Jamal Lewis down from behind for a significant loss on one play near the goal line and on another LB Titus Brown crashed into Lewis to halt his momentum toward the line.
''The goal line play was spirited,’’ Mangini said. ‘’The defense came out on top of that, but I’m sure that the offense will get the opportunity to equal that score at some point.''
Quarterbacks Brady Quinn and Derek Anderson showed some skills in operating the two-minute drill during the Wednesday morning practice.
Quinn, who struggled the prior two days in practice, operated the team with efficiency leading the team to a score against the defense. Earlier in the practice session he had another ball picked off when defensive back Coye Francies, a rookie out of San Jose State University, picked him off.
In Anderson, the quarterback flashed something not seen much during the last season as he led the team to a score. After taking the snap and seeing that his primary receiver was blanketed, he checked down and found running back James Davis wide open in the end zone.