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Browns now talking of 'creating' competition at QB, not necessarily adding it

Mar 19, 2013 -- 1:47pm

By Tony Grossi

 

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PHOENIX, AZ

Extra Points …

More QB chatter: It’s a process, this effort by the Browns to bring in competition at the quarterback position. And that effort has taken on a new phrase.

Instead of adding competition for Brandon Weeden, the Browns now intend to “create competition” at the position.

Is there a difference?

“I see it as creating competition,” coach Rob Chudzinski said at a breakfast meeting with reporters on Tuesday. “That can be from a number of different places. We have some guys that are there. We’re gonna coach them all, coach them hard. We’re gonna give them all opportunities to show what they can do.

“So I think there’ll be competition from within the room. And then, the other part of it is, of the great players I’ve been fortunate to be around, competition comes from within, too. I think as coaches we have to bring that out in our guys. Being around Norv (Turner) and seeing him working with quarterbacks – and my style is similar to Norv’s in that way – he’s been able to do that and I have no doubt he’ll be able to bring that out in our guys”

So Colt McCoy and Thaddeus Lewis officially are part of the “competition” the Browns have talked about since before the 2012 season ended? Do McCoy and Lewis have adequate enough arm strength for Chudzinski’s vertical passing offense?

“They do. They do,” he said. “And different guys bring different abilities, different talents, things that they can do uniquely. So that’s the good thing about when you have a system that’s all-encompassing. You may use 50 percent of your system for a certain guy, may use a different 50 percent or 40 percent for somebody else, 60 percent for this guy. You make adjustments for the guys you have and what they can do the best. That’s just something I believe in – putting your guys, regardless of position, in the best position to help you win.”

But he’s not ruling out still bringing in another quarterback.

“I’m not ruling out at any position anything,” Chudzinski said.

Bullish on receivers: The Browns haven’t added a receiver in free agency yet. Chudzinski, though, is excited about the top two he inherited – Josh Gordon and Greg Little.

“I saw a lot of development out of them last year as the season went on. Josh is a talented guy. He has all the tools to be a solid receiver, a solid No. 1 receiver in this league. Along with Greg, who really improved as the season went on. He’s a very physical football player and does a lot of things for you well. Can play in the slot and we can move him around some. So those are two young guys that I’m excited about coaching and about helping them develop.”

Yes, Chudzinski said Gordon can be a No. 1 receiver.

“He has the tools to be able to do that,” the coach went on. “But as with everybody, there’s a certain level of talent and he has that talent level. Now it’s going to be about his commitment to working and doing the things, learning and progressing. All the intangibles are what’s going to determine his success, along with any guys that have the talent you need to play a position.”

Ryan Mallett chatter: Patriots coach Bill Belichick wouldn't tip his hand on whether he intends to try to trade backup QB Ryan Mallett rather than lose him for nothing in free agency in two years. "I think Ryan improved a lot last year," Belichick said on Tuesday. I think he really had a good season. I think he was, obviously, like every player that came out in the '11 draft, was slowed by the lack of preparation heading into the season. But last year I think he really performed well." Asked about rumors of Mallett being traded before the draft, Belichick said, "I couldn't comment on that. I'm glad he plays for our team."

Offseason calendar: April 1: Browns offseason starts. Players lift and attend meetings. April 16-18: Returning players go on field for first time in minicamp. April 22-May 10: Phase 2 of offseason program. Players work on field with coaches, but offense and defense are separate. May 13-15: Rookie minicamp. May 20-June 7: Phase 3 of offseason program. Ten total days of OTA practices on the field.

Tony Grossi covers the Browns for ESPN 850 WKNR, ESPN 1540 KNR2 and www.espncleveland.com.

He has covered the Browns with distinction since 1984 and is one of 46 voters for the National Football League Hall of Fame. Email your “Hey Tony” questions to tgrossi@espncleveland.com

Follow Tony on Twitter @tonygrossi

 

 

 

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