When the Cleveland Browns claimed P Colton Schmidt off waivers on Tuesday, we speculated that they might be looking for him to not only win the punter job, but to handle kickoffs during the regular season as well. On Wednesday, head coach Rob Chudzinski confirmed that suspicion:
Spencer Lanning & Colton Schmidt will alternate punting. Schmidt is expected to hold all placements & handle all kickoffs— Daryl Ruiter (@RuiterWrongFAN) August 28, 2013
The pressure will be on for Spencer Lanning, who probably was starting to feel safe after the team waived T.J. Conley prior to the third preseason game. Lanning has not been given an opportunity to do kickoffs in the preseason, so the fact that the coaching staff is giving Schmidt a shot in that area shows that there is an interest in using him in that capacity during the regular season, with Shayne Graham having the edge in the kicking competition.
Also of note is the fact that the Browns have been the most active team on the waiver wire so far:
So far only eight players were claimed in the cutdown to 75, three by Cleveland, 2 by NE, 1 NO, 2 by JAX— John Clayton (@ClaytonESPN) August 28, 2013
If you recall, Cleveland was also really the only team that went out on a limb to acquire extra draft picks in 2014 during the 2013 draft, so Michael Lombardi and company aren't afraid to go against the grain.