By Tony Grossi | ESPNCleveland.com
Observations, notes, quotes and some facts on Day 13 of Browns training camp …
* Receiver Josh Gordon made an infrequent visit with reporters after practice, and he probably wish he hadn’t. The last time Gordon faced the media was three days before camp started when he apologized for the league substance abuse infraction that resulted in a two-game suspension to start the season.
On Saturday, one of the questions touched on a report from a certain national football “insider” about “loafing” at a minicamp practice in June. To his credit, Gordon, who is still the third-youngest player on the roster in his second season, handled it like a pro.
Gordon said, “Certain people see different things when they look at me run, look at me move. It might look slow because I’m a little bit larger player at my position, so it might be a little bit deceptive, compared to everybody else (with) a little bit shorter strides, shorter movements. But I go out here 100 percent every day.”
To a question about chemistry with quarterback Brandon Weeden, Gordon said it’s “right where we want it to be, (but) you always want to work on it to get better.”
That answer prompted me to ask why Gordon, unlike Greg Little, is never seen putting in extra time with his quarterback after practice.
He answered, “Well, the past few days I’ve just been going inside … getting treatment, taking care of my body for my needs. I do other things like looking at film, and other times might not be out here but I’ll be inside catching from JUGS (machine), doing other things, stretching, stuff like that.”
I think if Gordon wasn’t so elusive after practice, he wouldn’t be deluged with negative questions as much.
* For the fourth day in a row, Trent Richardson practiced lightly and didn’t take a lot of reps in team drills. Coach Rob Chudzinski said Richardson does not receive treatment for any injury. So I asked him if it was the plan all along for Richardson to be held out for the first preseason game even if he had not aggravated the shin injury in the June offseason workouts.
“Yeah, it’s part of the overall plan,” he said. “We want him ready to go opening day.”
Chudzinski said he would wait till later in the week to divulge his plans for Richardson in the Detroit game on Thursday. Such hesitation just feeds the perception that Richardson is injury-prone.
* Chudzinski said it was not accurate to say Chris Ogbonnaya struggled as a lead blocker in the Rams game. The 225-pound running back will continue to hold down the No. 1 fullback position.
“I was pleased with what he did and what he brings to the table,” the coach said. “He’s not your typical blow-it-up fullback. He functions well enough. As he learns and gets better from a technique standpoint, that will help him. Obviously, guys like that can cut and find ways to get on guys and their athleticism helps them get on guys as opposed to just knocking guys over.”
In answer to my question, Chudzinski said he has no plans at present to copy the San Francisco 49ers and locate a big lineman to audition as a blocking fullback.
“They happen to have a guy or two that can do that,” he said. “Right now, we are just focused on our guys learning the base offense and base defense. Those types of things like crossing guys over on offense and defense, we can get to a little further down the road.”
* Joe Haden intercepted an underthrown Weeden pass intended for Gordon and later jumped a sideline route against Davone Bess and turned it into a pick 6, also thrown by Weeden.
* At the conclusion of hurry-up drives to set up a field goal, Brandon Bogotay missed wide left from 46 yards and Shayne Graham hit the right upright from 55.
|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 firstname.lastname@example.orgFollow Tony on Twitter @tonygrossi
Return to: Grossi Stories Blog