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Transcript from news conference with Browns QB Brandon Weeden

By Nate Ulrich Published: May 22, 2012

Browns rookie quarterback Brandon Weeden spoke today after his first organized team activity practice. Here is a transcript from the news conference:

How do you and Colt McCoy decide who speaks first?: “We don’t. We just go with the flow.”

How was this different than rookie minicamp?: “It was actually pretty much the same. Obviously more guys. A lot more veteran guys, which was good. They were coaching us up. If Seneca [Wallace] saw something, he would throw something my way. It was a lot like rookie minicamp – a lot of the same plays, a lot of the same fundamentals. The veterans are a big help. The veterans are a big help, especially for us younger guys trying to get a feel for what we’re doing.”

Is it awkward trying to take Colt McCoy’s job?: “I don’t think anybody looks at it as awkward. This is part of the business. That’s just the way professional sports works. When I was in baseball, you’re coming in to take someone’s job. That’s just the way this business works. We’re all in this as a team. We’re worried about each other and winning games, not who is going to be the starting whatever position. That doesn’t matter as long as we’re all functioning and winning games. That’s the attitude we’ve taken in practices like this.”

General Manager Tom Heckert said the Browns “fully expect” you to win the starting job. What is your reaction to those comments?: “They came and got me in the first round for a reason, but he said it best – I have to earn that job. They’re not going to hand it to me just because of where they took me. I have to compete and show I belong on the field. Every position – mine in particular with Colt and how good he played and how good of a player he is. The competition is fun. It should be better for everybody involved. That’s the mentality I’m taking. It’s not my job. It’s my job to win. I have to take it. I have to be competitive and continue to get better.”

How’s it working out with you and Colt?: “It’s been really good. Obviously we’re from the same conference. There’s a little rivalry there between Oklahoma State and Texas. We joke about that. Everything’s cordial. Everything’s fine. Nothing out of the ordinary.”

How soon do you expect to get your rookie contract done?: “As soon as possible. We know where we stand and what we want. I’d have signed two weeks ago if I could have. I’m not going to hold out. We just want what’s fair for me. My agent’s doing that. I haven’t even talked to them about it. Whenever the day comes, I’ll sign the paper and go on about it.”

How is working under center going?: “Great. Today I felt really comfortable. Obviously two older veteran guys had a lot of experience. It’s nice. I said during rookie minicamp I feel better under center. I haven’t taken a snap under center since the Fiesta Bowl on Jan. 2, which is good. I feel really comfortable under center.”

Is working with the veteran receivers better than working with the rookies?: “It’s been good. We haven’t got a feel for each and every guy and what every guy can do, but for being Day 1, I felt good with the way things went. At this level everybody can play. Everybody can run. Everybody can catch. It’s the little things – how they come out of breaks, where their speed cuts are, stuff like that. That will come with time. But for being Day 1, it went pretty good.”

Is it tough learning the offense, is it complex, is it different than what you’ve run?: “Yeah, it’s completely different from what I ran. But I don’t think it’s complex. It all makes sense. You’ve just gotta study it. It’s all terminology. [It’s] a lot of the same concepts as far as route concepts and stuff like that. I think the biggest difference for me is we didn’t use the tight end at Oklahoma State, so incorporating a tight end is a benefit for me as well, but I think it’s the biggest difference from Oklahoma State to what we did now. Knock on wood, I’m making steps in the right direction.”

Is there a noticeable difference in your comfort level with the offense each time out?: “Yeah, absolutely and I said that during rookie minicamp. Day 1, you make some mistakes, some mental mistakes, you’re still learning it. But by Day 3 of rookie minicamp, I felt really, really comfortable. So out here today, I felt really, really comfortable. It comes with time. Obviously defenses they’re fast, they play different coverages. You’ve got to start putting it all together. But from our standpoint, Xs and Os, I feel really good with it.”

The Washington Redskins said Robert Griffin III is their starting quarterback right off the bat. Would it help you if the Browns did that with you?: “No, because I want to compete. I want to continue to get better. I know I’ve been through this before. I want to go out and win the job. I want to compete and do everything I can. Obviously he’s in a different situation in Washington, but it doesn’t matter one way or the other. It won’t hurt my feelings one way or the other, but I want to continue to compete to earn the job.”

Will you take control of huddle and not defer to veterans?: “Well, today in the huddle they were talking about the previous play, and I came and made a point. I said, ‘Hey, listen.’ I can’t tell you what I said ‘cause you can’t write it. But, yeah, I think these guys, they understand it. They’ve been here before. Once I step into the huddle I have the play, they know to be quiet and they know it is my huddle. Up until I step in, the center and everybody else can kind of do what they do. But I stepped in one time and they were still chirping a little bit, and it stopped pretty quick.”

Have any veterans teased you yet because you’re older than them?: “No, not yet. Don’t bring it up to them, either. No, not yet. It’s been good. Obviously that’s the case, but as long as you guys don’t write it and I don’t have to talk about it, no one will know.”

Are you finding that your age is helping you in the locker room?: “No question, absolutely. And I think just from a personality standpoint, maybe even more so than age, I think just my personality, I’m so laid back and even keeled. I think that’s what you need in the locker room, and that’s what you need at this position. Yeah, you’ve gotta be aggressive and you’ve gotta go after it on game day. But I think being a little bit older, a little more mature has helped me so far. Hopefully it continues to do so.”

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