The Cleveland Browns took to the practice field on Thursday for Day 11 of training camp, but this was the first session that was closed off to the public. The media was in attendance, though, along with a couple of celebrities and special guests.
CLEVELAND BROWNS TRAINING CAMP REPORT - DAY 11 (8/7/14)
- Offensive Linemen Connect on Field Goals: Maybe the reason the Browns don't have a backup kicker to Billy Cundiff in camp is because they are already content with what Joe Thomas and Garrett Gilkey can do when called upon.
Most of you who have read these reports should be familiar with the routine "orange jersey" contests that Mike Pettine has been having at the end of practice. On Thursday, the orange jerseys were settled my means of field goal kicking...from offensive and defensive linemen.
While Thomas and Gilkey both connected on their attempts from 20 yards out for the offense, Armonty Bryant was the only defensive player to make his attempt. Desmond Bryant missed his kick, and then Phil Taylor collapsed to the ground after he failed to keep the defense's hopes alive. You can see Thomas, Gilkey, and Taylor's kicks in this video. Thomas and Gilkey both have kicking experience from their pre-college days.
- LeBron James Makes His Presence Known: It ended up being a light and short practice for the Browns as they prepare for the Lions this Saturday, so perhaps the biggest story of the day was the fact that Cavaliers star LeBron James was in attendance. It was his first semi-public appearance in Northeast Ohio since returning home, and he was talking on the field to Mike Pettine, Donte Whitner, Joe Haden, Johnny Manziel, and others.
- Gilbert Sits, Might Not Play vs. Detroit: Rookie first-round CB Justin Gilbert was not practicing. Afterward, Mike Pettine would only say that he was "nicked up." It was later deemed to be a groin injury, so his status for the game is up-in-the-air. Players with even slight injuries typically sit out of preseason games, unless you're the quarterback.
- Quarterback Play: QB Brian Hoyer took the reps with the first-team offense. On the first play, he went deep to WR Travis Benjamin, but the ball was tipped and then nearly intercepted. According to Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal, Hoyer was just 4-of-9 with 2 interceptions in 11-on-11 drills, while QB Johnny Manziel was 6-of-8 with a touchdown pass (to WR Miles Austin). Besides Ulrich, not too many other reporters seemed to mention much about practice itself.
- Injury Report: The following players did not practice: WR Nate Burleson (hamstring), TE Jordan Cameron (shoulder), LB Darius Eubanks (shoulder), OL Reid Fragel (lower leg), CB Justin Gilbert (groin), OL Randall Harris (knee), LB Eric Martin (concussion), Alex Parsons (knee), and Billy Winn (abdomen). How did Martin get a concussion in training camp?
- Dropping Some Weight: OG John Greco said that he lost 25 pounds this offseason to get down to 310 pounds, in an effort to be quicker for the zone blocking scheme. We'll see if that pays off in his competition against OG Garrett Gilkey.
- Brownies: ILB Karlos Dansby and SS Donte Whitner got the "veteran day off." ... ILB Zac Diles took Dansby's spot on the first-team defense and notched an interception. ... CB Joe Haden also picked off QB Brian Hoyer. ... Both of Hoyer's interceptions came in red zone drills. ... WR Charles Johnson got involved in the action a bit more, which might be a good sign for his rep count this Saturday. ... Chef Michael Symon also took in practice from the sideline. ... The Browns are off Friday, and their next practice session in Berea is on Monday.
Link Collection / Training Camp Sources
- Ben Tate will ‘welcome help’ in the ground game (Jones, Browns.com)
- LeBron James' first appearance in NE Ohio since 'the Comeback' (Grossi, ESPN Cleveland)
- 2014 Browns training camp snapshot: Day 11 (Ulrich, Akron Beacon Journal)
- Manziel Will Not See First-Team Reps Saturday Night vs. Lions (Ruiter, 92.3 the Fan)
- Cleveland Browns training camp report day 11 (Cabot, Plain Dealer)
- Browns Camp Report: Day 11 (McManamon, ESPN)