A Browns Rookies Report: From looking at a locker to how you can wear a helmet – Terry Pluto

BEREA, Ohio – The Browns made some of their rookies available to the media on Friday. It’s an exciting day, talking to the players shortly after entering the NFL locker room for the first time.

Think of Martin Emerson, the third and most elected team member last month.

“How long have you been in the NFL?” I asked.

“When I saw my lock,” said the Mississippi State defender. “It was there with all the other great players.”

Emerson had already texted Denzel Ward, a Nordonia thing that has become a Pro Bowl. Emerson played in the SEC, which is like an NFL farm. He formed several competitive teams at the conference during his three years in Starkville, Mississippi.

He knew it was going to be written. However, seeing your name and jersey in the NFL locker … is a dream for many of these guys, a day that many will never forget.

Browns rookie Malik Smith has not worn a helmet since fifth grade.
Joshua Gunter, cleveland.com

HOW IS SUNDAY?

The Browns brought in Malik Smith over the weekend as a try. He is the brother of Tyreke Smith, a Ohio State defender who was fifth in Seattle. Both went to Cleveland Heights.

Malik Smith was a basketball player, about 16.5 points and 9.3 rebounds in high school. He was also recruited by UNC-Asheville, where he only scored 1.9 points as a newcomer. He later moved to Bryant and then to Fisk, where he completed his business studies. He just played basketball as a new person.

What about football?

“Not from grade 5,” Smith said. “I have never worn a helmet ever since. They ask me what size I want on the shoulder and hat – I don’t know. “

There is a history of basketball players being the strongest ends of the NFL. That’s the way Smith 6-foot-4, 267-pound Smith wants to go. He was spotted by the Browns on Ohio State Pro Day. Tireke promoted the dream of football to his brother and convinced the Buckeyes that Malik was part of a team controlled by scouts.

The Browns love its athletic games. They look in amazing shape.

“Everything is new to me,” Smith said. “He gave me a game book and it looks like a lot of lines. I got my business degree from Fisk. My brother thinks I can. I have to go there.”

ALIPO

Cleveland Browns RB Jerome Ford also has experience in special teams. Joshua Gunter, cleveland.com

I SAID SMACK ‘EM

Jerome Ford could be more than just a back-up. I realized that when I inquired about Cincinnati’s medicine for playing special teams.

“I did,” he said. “I love it.”

Returning a push?

“I can,” he said. “But it’s better to run at full speed (in a shooting game) and hit a man standing there. You hit them.”

He laughed.

I remember Kent State defender Joshua Cribbs coming into the NFL with the same ideas as a free agent. Ford began his career in Alabama.

“I went into the back room and thought I was going to be human,” Ford said.

What happened?

“I looked around and realized that I was not going to be a boy,” he said with a laugh.

Like Ohio State, Alabama is a NFL factory. In two years, Ford carried the ball 31 times to Alabama, about 4.9 yards and scored three TDs. That little example showed talent. Since Nick Saban became a coach, Alabama often has high hopes for RB.

Ford moved to Cincinnati (which enrolled him in high school) and became a Bearcats star. As a youngster, he was on the show teams as well as coming out as a runner. In 2021, it hit 1,242 yards (average 6.2 yards) and 19 TDs. He was Brown’s fifth nominee.

“I was cutting hair (from a friend) at my house when I received a text message,” Ford said. “I will do whatever he wants. … I can catch the ball. I was a slot recipient in high school. Special groups …

USE ONE NUMBER

David Bell says the main job of the recipient is to catch the ball, and he did well in Purdue.
Joshua Gunter, cleveland.com

SOMEONE “HOLD THE BALL”?

In 2016, the Browns had a radio event like this for their singers. I stayed with Rashard Higgins. He was the fifth choice. He was fourth recipient registered by the group that year.

“What kind of recipients are you?” I asked Higgins.

“I’m a receiver like Catch-The-Ball,” he said.

At its best, Higgins has good hands. Brown expects the third David Bell to have the same form – although he does not have the speed of the NFL.

“For me, catching the ball is our number 1 job,” said Bell, a former Tenth Annual Recipient of Purdue.

Bell’s figures in 2021 are numerous. Captured 93 times, approximately 13.8 yards. He had a great game vs. Best teams: Ohio State (11 fish, 102 yards), Michigan State (11 fish, 217 yards) and Iowa (11 fish, 240 yards).

With those numbers, you would expect him to be listed at the top.

“I do not think so,” said Bell. “God has made me perfect. The Browns have a very fast, winning game. “

With Amari Cooper being the only receiver set on the list, it’s a good opportunity for the 6-foot-2 receiver to play right away.

HE IS A MAN

Rookie Cade York said he had already gone to FirstEnergy Stadium to try to push the beach.

Joshua Gunter, cleveland.com

YES THEY CALLED PHIL DAWSON

This was new. I have never seen a football pitcher surrounded by a group of journalists on the first day that journalists were allowed to watch a rookie camp. But that was the case with Cade York, the LSU ball thrower who scored the fourth goal.

He had already gone to FirstEnergy Stadium to try to push along the shores of Lake Erie.

“It was great,” York said. “In fact, it was a bit windy when I used to push at LSU.”

York knows that a bad season is coming. He talked on the phone for 40 minutes with Phil Dawson, Browns’ last great shooter. The weather and the wind were part of the discussion. Dawson told York about the flag he was watching at the stadium to control the storms.

Since the Browns decided to resign Dawson at the end of the 2012 season, he passed nine-wayers in nine years – including Cody Parkey twice (2016, 2020).

Dawson pushed from the club back in 1999 to 2012. Some fans want the Browns to sign Dawson as their pushing coach. He already has a job – a head coach at Hyde Park High School in Austin, Texas.

York is actively learning about shooting and the challenges in Cleveland. Dawson is honorable. The Browns ‘training ground is on Lou Groza Blvd., named after the Browns’ top shooter.

PROTECTION OF THE HEART

Cleveland Browns WR Michael Woods Il fluctuates as he leaves the field after the Cleveland Browns Rookie Minicamp. Joshua Gunter, cleveland.com

YOU CAN DO IT

“Donovan Peoples-Jones,” said Michael Woods II. The nominee for the sixth group was referring to the sixth choice, a recipient like him. Peoples-Jones (DPJ) was taken in 2020. In his last season in Michigan, DPJ caught 34 times at the 12.9 yard average.

Woods ran 35 times in the 11.4-yard line.

Receiving assistant Chad O’Shea told Woods how DPJ “played 40 percent of the game as a rookie.” In fact, it was 34 percent. But the fact that he is the sixth choice does not prevent him from going out into the field.

“I’m big,” said Woods 6-foot-1. “I’m a 3rd level recipient. I can do it in a nutshell. I can do intermediate. I can do longer. … I can stop.”

All the young people were happy. They meet fans at the airport and hotel, and express the love of their husbands in orange hats. Everyone is happy right now in Berea.

“Everyone tells me Dawg Pound is crazy,” Woods said. “We’ll give them a reason to be crazy.”

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