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Transcript from news conference with Browns coach Pat Shurmur

By Nate Ulrich Published: May 13, 2012

Browns coach Pat Shurmur met with reporters today during the team's rookie minicamp. Here is a transcript from the news conference:

(Opening statement)- “I don’t have much more to add from yesterday, but I am sure you have some questions. The guys competed well on day two. Some of the guys were a little bit sore so they were a little bit slow getting going, but by the beginning of the team drills they were up and running and did a nice job.”

(On if he noticed an improvement on the center-quarterback exchange)- “Yeah, everything was a little bit smoother from the play call in the huddle to getting lined up and of course the quarterback-center exchange. Obviously, first things first, we have got to get the snap.”

(On what he expects from a quarterback during drills with no defenders)- “We talk and we preach that anytime we do anything against air, we have got to be 100%. You are looking for drills, of course, where there is not bump-and-run and they are not double-teaming and playing crazy coverages, you are looking for completions. I think we got a lot of completions today. Along with that are the quarterbacks and receivers getting used to one another, the depths, the timing and whatnot.”

(On Trent Richardson’s physique)- “Wow. He is a very powerful man and he is powerfully built. Don’t let the 5-9 and a half fool you, he is almost 230 pounds and that is a lot of muscle packed into that body. I think he’s got a very powerful build much like we thought when we drafted him and it shows up on the field.”

(On Richardson and other smaller running back)- “I think the runners, depending on how they are built, they get used to their size and that somewhat drives their running style. Trent can get his foot down and slash it up in the line of scrimmage and by the nature of his build, he is sometimes hard to get your arms around and tackle. That natural leverage that he has also gives him great balance and body control.”

(On if Richardson’s size allows him to get lost behind the offensive line)- “I think he can hide behind blockers and we saw him do that at times at Alabama, naturally. I think he uses that to his advantage and I think he is a very patient runner. I think he’s got excellent vision so when he sees daylight, he can get his foot down and get up in it.”

(On where he sees Brad Smelley contributing this season)- “Brad has already showed us that he can be somewhat multiple, position-wise. He can play on the line of scrimmage, he can play in the backfield and we use a tight end/fullback type guy like that, Alex Smith, last year. We line him up, he’s an 80 number, 81, and he played a lot of fullback for us. That helps you when you have a guy that can line up on the end of the line of scrimmage, maybe line up in the slot or also play from the backfield. It allows you to be somewhat multiple.”

(On what he has seen out of Mitchell Schwartz and what it means when people say he is NFL ready)- “I don’t know about NFL ready, I do know this, he is very sound in his fundamentals. I think that will give him a chance to speed up the process to be an NFL player. He is very detailed with his sets, he is good with his hands, he understands what the defense is going to do by the way they are aligned. He’s a very sharp guy. I think you can tell he is a guy that has detailed his work because it shows up in his play.”

(On how he is able to evaluate the offensive and defensive linemen this weekend)- “I think what you look at is their footwork, their body position, when the ball is snapped their pad level, those types of things. Of course, we’re not cracking and crunching each other, but you can see all of those things that are necessary if you are going to be a good player. None of the other stuff, none of the physical nature of playing offensive line matters if you can’t do all of those athletic skills so I think that’s what you see.”

(On if they have noticed Joseph Halahuni’s play)- “Yeah, we noticed him. I think he made some plays yesterday and he is like everybody out here, he is fighting to learn it and then go out and execute. He has done a nice job.”

(On if it is more difficult for Halahuni to make an impact with the depth at tight end)- “No, not really. I think when you see him, it is easy for a young man just to say, ‘Gosh, I am fifth or sixth in line,’ or whatever, but what we see out here is when they are competing with no comparisons, how they play. Right now when they are on the field, whether you are a first-round pick or you’re a free agent or you are here on a tryout basis, once they’re out there competing then we tend to compare them from that.”

(On if Travis Benjamin has shown that he has a chance to be in the wide receiver rotation this year)- “Absolutely, I think he had a nice day yesterday and he found a way to get himself going today and he made some plays. He learns well, you can see he can bring it to the field and I think he’s got the skills necessary to be a player in this league.”

(On Benjamin being blanketed on two deep routes and if his speed is showing up)- “I don’t know about, ‘Being blanketed.’ We ran go-routes and the guys were lined up about 15 yards deep. If somebody said Okay, I am going to run down the field and you backed way off, I think you could cover most folks. To add to your question, I would say his speed shows up extremely well though.”

(On Brandon Weeden’s athleticism and if he has decent feet)- “He’s got decent feet and he is naturally accurate. That is a natural component to his game and so it’s just a matter of him getting used to how we do things and I think that accuracy will show.”

(On if he sees Weeden becoming more comfortable after day one)- “No question. I’ve said it many times, but the play call starts in the huddle and the play calls were smoother and the instructions to the huddle were smoother just after being out here one day. I think that’s what you expect to see from a quarterback, that he can bring it to the field.”

(On what has stood out the most after three practices)- “I think what impresses me the most is a lot that a lot of the guys that we are talking about, I see the reasons why we drafted them. I have not been disappointed in what these guys are based on what we thought they were when we drafted them.”

(On how Weeden’s ball compares to other quarterbacks he has coached)- “I think he is a very smooth thrower. He throws the ball easy and I think a guy that can throw the ball with a smooth motion, the ball presents itself to the receivers well. I think that helps them be more efficient catching it. I like what I’ve seen from him just in terms of throwing the football, for sure. His touch and accuracy are all part of it. I think that it’s kind of a natural thing, that they just know to take a little off of it because a guys five yards away and then whether to put it on the right or left shoulder based on where the defender is so he can turn away from it, all things that we teach and we emphasize, but some guys kind of naturally get it.”

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