Day 3 of Cleveland Browns training camp brought the first weekend practice of camp, as well as the first practice session of the year in which the team was in full pads. The full practice report is below.
CLEVELAND BROWNS TRAINING CAMP REPORT - DAY 3 (8/1/15)
See you soon. #woofwoof— Billy Winn (@Billy_Boi_90) August 1, 2015
: The Browns received their first injury scare of camp when DL Billy Winn went to the ground and was carted off with what appeared to be a right knee injury. Head coach Mike Pettine said that the team hoped to learn more in the afternoon after Winn underwent tests. A little after 2:00 PM ET, Winn tweeted the following, which would seem to indicate that he received good news:
- Thomas' Day Off: LT Joe Thomas is going to receive an off day every couple of days in this year's camp. He was off to the side for Day 3, so who took his spot? During OTAs, rookie first-round pick Cameron Erving would fill in for Thomas. Would he see his first action with the first-team offense in camp? Nope.
Instead, that honor went to OL Andrew McDonald, who has been in the league since 2012 but only played in two games as a reserve. It clues you in to the depth chart a little bit, as I'd expect it to mean that McDonald will play left tackle with the second-team offense in the first preseason game. For today's practice, Erving did play left tackle with the second-team offense after having been at right guard the first couple days of camp (with the second-team offense).
Get Ready for Malcolm Johnson: Last year, I kept wanting MarQueis Gray to succeed and become the team's fullback. He fulfilled that role for almost all of camp, but didn't make the final cut. This year, the team selected FB Malcolm Johnson in the sixth round, and the growing sense is that he'll have a role in the offense.
Johnson is the only rookie working with the first team on either side of the ball. He's known as a good receiver, just like the pass he hauled in above from QB Johnny Manziel. Later on, Nate Ulrich of the ABJ reported that Manziel connected with Johnson on a 25-yard wheel route between the coverage of OLB Nate Orchard and S De'Ante Saunders.
- Practice Intensifies: With this being the first day in full pads, the intensity of practice was turned up a notch, often times favoring the defense. Here is an example in a one-on-one drill when DL John Hughes flattens OL Karim Barton:
Later on, the first fight of camp broke out as OL Michael Bowie reportedly threw a punch at DL Jacobbi McDaniel. The skirmish didn't last long, but it obviously isn't a good look for Bowie, who is trying to compete for a spot on the right side of the offensive line.
Browns' Defense Gets the Upper Hand: On Day 2 of practice, the Browns' offense thrived, prompting SS Donte Whitner to vow for revenge once the pads went on. All indications point to the defense having "won" Day 3 of camp. Although the offense didn't turn the ball over, Andrew Gribble of Browns.com discussed how the defense threw a new look at the offense to disrupt what they had been doing successfully:
When the defense went with six defensive backs and presented looks observers hadn’t seen through the first three days. There were many near-turnovers, but no official ones, as quarterbacks Josh McCown and Johnny Manziel faced a barrage of pressure and were forced into throws they wanted back.CB Joe Haden was said to be knocking away passes all over the place. He nearly had an interception on a deep pass thrown by QB Josh McCown to WR Taylor Gabriel, but the ball popped out of Haden's arms when he landed on the ground.
The Competition is Back: Last year, Mike Pettine was known for ending practices with a competition between the offense and the defense. Whichever side won would be able to wear orange-colored practice jerseys the next day. With the pads on, the competitions returned. Pettine said that the competition theme on Saturday was, "Third downs. It was third-and-8, third-and-5 and third-and-3."
We don't know exactly how many plays were run, but the final play saw WR Dwayne Bowe get behind CB Joe Haden. QB Josh McCown let the pass rip deep, but the pair just missed connecting. Some say the ball was overthrown, while others say Bowe let is slip through his hands. Either way, the play resulted in the defense winning the competition, and they will wear their badge of honor on Sunday.
Running Backs Banged Up: A couple of Browns running backs suffered injuries during practice. RB Duke Johnson suffered a hamstring injury and RB Terrance West had calf cramps. Both players remained on the field after their injuries, but were held out from any more drills. It is expected that both players will be able to return to action in a couple of practices. In the mean time, RB Shaun Draughn will begin receiving more reps, along with RB Luke Lundy.
Kicker Update: We have a kicker update on Day 3 of camp, courtesy of Daryl Ruiter from 92.3 the Fan. The slight edge currently goes to "Murderleg" Carey Spear:
Kicking competition underway: Carey Spear was perfect; hit from 33L/R, 38L, 42L/R, 49R, 53L & 56L; Travis Coons good from all but 49R & 56L— Daryl Ruiter (@RuiterWrongFAN) August 1, 2015
- Injury Update: ILB Darius Eubanks (knee) and CB Charles Gaines (hamstring) each participated in practice for the first time, with Eubanks having been activated from the non-football injury list. The only player left who needs to pass his conditioning test is RB Glenn Winston (knee). DB Brandon Stephens also hurt his hamstring during practice.
- Brownies: There were 3,015 fans who attended practice, the largest crowd in three days. ... CB Justin Gilbert had several pass break-ups, but so did several other cornerbacks. ... Ohio State QB Cardale Jones was at practice in support of former Glenville teammate WR Shane Wynn. ... NT Danny Shelton continues to be the first player out on to the field. ... Rookie DT Xavier Cooper showed off his pass-rushing ability when he chased QB Johnny Manziel outside the pocket.
Team owner Jimmy Haslam spoke with the media after practice. ... Former Buckeyes head coach Jim Tressel got to watch several of his former players in orange and brown. ... Per Jason Gibbs of ESPN Cleveland, Manziel was 10/17 in completions while McCown was 15/25. ... Day 4 of practice is scheduled for 9:30 AM on Sunday (gates open at 8:30 AM), and I will be in attendance for one of two times this camp.
"Dawg Pound Report" will broadcast live from Browns Camp on Day 4. Airing on News Channel 5, the half-hour show is hosted by Andy Baskin and Nathan Zegura and begins at 11:30 a.m.
Photos & Videos from Twitter
Link Collection / Training Camp Sources
- 5 observations from Day 3 of Cleveland Browns training camp (Gribble, Browns.com)
- Browns training camp Day 3: Pads go on, defense takes over (Grossi, ESPN Cleveland)
- Training Camp Notebook: Injuries And More (Greetham, The OBR)
- Secondary responds at Cleveland Browns training camp (Labbe, Plain Dealer)
- Browns training camp snapshot, Day 3 (Ulrich, Akron Beacon Journal)
- Winn, Johnson, West don't finish practice (McManamon, ESPN)
Johnny Watch, Day 3 (Gibbs, ESPN Cleveland)