Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon did not have the benefit of participating in organized team activities or minicamps during his rookie season, since he was selected in the supplemental draft. Now that he is in his second season, he is taking full advantage of how these sessions will prepare him for his first season under the Rob Chudzinski and Norv Turner era.
"I was way behind the 8-ball coming into last year," Gordon told the Akron Beacon Journal. "Now it’s a huge advantage for me to learn the offense, get in shape, get in more of a rhythm with whatever you’re doing out there, so you don’t feel as stressed or as new to everything. It’s definitely slowed down a lot."
As a rookie, Gordon made his mark by catching several deep touchdown passes from quarterback Brandon Weeden. Gordon's touchdowns represented some of the few big plays that came out of former head coach Pat Shurmur's offense. With Chudzinski and Turner's offense, though, he re-iterated that the receivers will see a lot of downfield action:
"Defenses will be shocked to say the least with how much we’re running down field," Gordon said. "I’ve never ran this much as a wide receiver ever in my life, and that’s a good thing. And not just me, everyone from the slot guys to running backs, everyone’s got passing plays in the system."
Browns receiver Greg Little also echoed Gordon's sentiments:
"Everything is downfield, and you get taught pretty quickly that you have to be well-conditioned to play fast and play at a high level," Little said. "I just like the way Norv thinks. He calls more post and go routes than I’ve ever run before."
I don't know how much defenses will be shocked about the added down field work for the receivers, as they can also make adjustments to accommodate for the styles of Chudzinski and Turner. Better said, it will be a welcome relief for Gordon and the other receivers, who want to be unleashed after feeling limited in what they could do in Shurmur's West Coast Offense the past year or two.