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Shurmur Talks About Why the Team Released Robiskie, and More

Cleveland Browns head coach Pat Shurmur met with the media prior to Wednesday's practice and talked about several things. One of the obvious questions that reporters had was why wide receiver Brian Robiskie was released. Shurmur also talked about whether Joe Haden will cover Andre Johnson if he plays this Sunday, among other things.

Side notes: Peyton Hillis did not take part in practice on Wednesday, even though Shurmur said they would try to have him out there in some capacity. Also, the ABJ reports that Artis Hicks was also taking some snaps at right tackle with the first-team offense (as was Tony Pashos). [Read full press conference transcript here]

(On releasing Brian Robiskie)- "I talked about it yesterday, this is a time of year and we’ve had injuries at running back and then we have to make a roster move. Then you look at your roster and you say, ‘There’s nobody we want to release.’ I like Brian, I have a great deal of respect for him but based on how the roster was shaped we had to make a move to bring in a runner and we made a decision to part ways.  But, we wish him the best and we’re hopeful that he’s playing football soon for somebody."

(On why Robiskie never panned out)- "I don’t know.  He competed with the other receivers and I felt like he was given his opportunities to play and again, you just make decisions.  Again, I like Brian.  He’s an NFL receiver so we’re hopeful he has a place to go."

(On if Chris Gocong will practice today)- "He’ll be out there today, he’ll practice."

(On if Joe Haden will be matched up with Andre Johnson one-on-one or if Johnson’s injury precludes them from doing that)- "We’ll have the ability to do both depending who they line up with, but I’m glad Joe Haden’s playing.  We’ve all watched him have a great first half of the year and he’s a pro.  He started out and had some outstanding games, fought back from injury already and it’s enjoyable to watch him practice.  I’ll leave some of the schematics until Sunday in terms of how we’re going to defend the Texans, but if Andre Johnson’s out there I think Joe Haden probably won’t be far away I would imagine."

(On how Andre Johnson impact’s their offense)- "When you have an explosive playmaker, you have to put a lot of thought in to how you’re going to defend a team, especially a team that runs the ball extremely well.  It’s frequently talk about, the numbers.  You put an extra guy down or you commit seven and a half or eight guys to the line of scrimmage and the coverage gets one-on-one.  But with a guy like Andre, you’ve got to be aware he is.  He is no question one of the best receivers in the league and has been for a long time. He means a lot to their offense.  When he’s in the game they try to get him the ball, which is a very smart on their part."

(On why they decided to sign Thomas Clayton)- "There are reasons why, but he was a guy that’s been, even though he hasn’t played a bunch, he’s been around.  We had some familiarity with him and went that route.  We discussed many guys, but at this time of year, there’s some limitations in terms of who you can get."

(On how much he can expect Clayton to learn from Tuesday to Sunday)- "Obi (Chris Ogbonnaya) did it in three days so that’s the time frame.  He’ll be in there playing, he’s active, he’ll be in there playing so I expect him to learn it. We’re answering some of the questions that we posed earlier.  You’ve got to just be careful how much you give him, but you’ve got to give him enough for him to go in there and be able to execute."

(On if it is against their philosophy to bring in veteran wide receiver like Brandon Lloyd or T.J. Houshmandzadeh)- "I wouldn’t say that.  We’re always looking for any and all ways to improve our team.  Now there are a lot of things that happen behind the scenes and we understand how our team is built.  My job is to get the team better and fight to win games.  Through the draft, free agency or whatever we do what we can to improve our team in ways that we can.  You mentioned a couple of specific receivers and we go through and talk about everybody that’s available and try to make decisions based on what’s best for our team."

(On if Ogbonnaya played every snap after Hardesty got hurt)- "There were a couple downs where I stuck Owen (Marecic) in there."

(On if why Lawrence Vickers was not brought back)- "We made the decision to move forward and we drafted Owen.  I think from what I’ve seen, he’s been somewhat limited in his snaps down there, but when he’s in the game he’s doing well for him.  We just made the decision to move on and we drafted Owen."