After going through conditioning on Thursday (our full conditioning day report is here), the Cleveland Browns opened up their 2016 training camp on Friday. Head coach Hue Jackson has switched to afternoon practices after the past couple of regimes have been holding practices in the morning.
The way our training camp reports work is this: for any practices that we cannot attend (such at today), I read through all of the local media members’ tweets and recaps from the day, and I create one cumulative recap of what all of the topics of the day were.
CLEVELAND BROWNS TRAINING CAMP REPORT - DAY 1 (7/29/16)
1. Weather Closes Practice to Fans: Sadly, the sold-out crowd of fans who reserved tickets for today’s practice were left disappointed.
Practice was scheduled to start at 3:00 PM, with general admission gates opening at 2:00 PM. I haven’t found any photos of fans having been let in early, so I believe the team held off on opening the gates due to storm and lightning threats in the area. At 3:08 PM, they officially announced that practice was closed to the public.
2. Right Back Outside: The Browns were stretching inside, but it didn’t take long for the rain to subside and for the sun to start shining. The Browns had called practice already for fan safety, and in case practice were to move back indoors due to another storm. By 3:20 PM, the team was marching back outside:
3. The Offensive Line: Starting RG John Greco missed the first day of practice with some form of an injury, as he was on the sidelines working with trainers. (UPDATE: Greco has a hamstring injury) OG Austin Pasztor filled in for Greco with the first-team offense. Pasztor didn’t finish practice after suffering an injury (possibly cramping).
The spot up for competition this camp is at right tackle. Alvin Bailey continued working with the first-team offense there, just as he’s been during the team’s offseason programs. Despite missing all offseason programs as he recovered from knee surgery, rookie Shon Coleman took some reps with the second-team offense at right tackle.
4. Could Ogbah go to DE? One of the biggest stories of the day might be the fact that the team is exploring their options with Emmanuel Ogbah replacing Desmond Bryant as a 5-technique as opposed to being primarily an outside linebacker. It’s just Day 1, so nothing is set in stone, but he was treated exclusively like a defensive lineman today:
#Browns drafted Emmanuel Ogbah 32nd overall as OLB but he worked with D-line in individual drills, played DE in team, stretched w/ DL today— Nate Ulrich (@NateUlrichABJ) July 29, 2016
In other defensive line news, DE Xavier Cooper saw some reps with the first-team defense.
5. QB News: During the first day of practice, QB Robert Griffin III saw all of the work with the first-team offense. Head coach Hue Jackson has insisted that the best player will win the job, and some in the local media believe that looks like QB Josh McCown.
Josh McCown is passing the ball better than RG3. It isn't even close. Practice ends— Jeff Schudel (@jsproinsider) July 29, 2016
Pat McManamon of ESPN has a few more notes on Griffin vs. McCown today. I maintain that unless Griffin just looks awful, though, his continued first-team reps, which he’s been taking all offseason, coupled with the fact that the first preseason game isn’t that far away, means that it’d be a shock if Griffin isn’t named the starter.
If you’re looking for a few clips of the quarterbacks throwing in 7-on-7 drills, check them out below. Please note that the Browns have a new policy for media this year: no photos or videos during 11-on-11 drills of practice.
6. Good First Impression for K’Waun: If he’s trying to hold off CB Charles Gaines and CB Trey Caldwell for the starting nickelback job, then CB K’Waun Williams got off to a great start with an interception and a forced fumble:
#Browns CB K'Waun Williams having nice practice. Just intercepted Austin Davis in 7 on 7. Had a forced fumble earlier in team.— Nate Ulrich (@NateUlrichABJ) July 29, 2016
7. Injury News: The Browns placed DE Jackson Jeffcoat on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list after hurting his hamstring during conditioning tests on Thursday. Joining him on the sidelines/bike brigade were WR Josh Gordon (quad), TE Seth DeValve (hamstring), OL John Greco (hamstring), OL Conor Boffeli (knee/ankle), and CB Joe Haden (ankle).
During practice, FB Malcolm Johnson, WR Marlon Moore, and OL Austin Pasztor were among those to walk off.
8. Brownies: WR Corey Coleman continues to get reps as a punt returner. ... According to Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal, Chad Johnson was also showing off some moves to the punt returners, despite being a coaching intern. ... CB Tramon Williams was also working with the punt returners. ... WR Marlon Moore was praised by several members of the media for catching everything thrown his way. ... The team has no doubt that CB Joe Haden will be ready for the opener. ... Some poor fans still tried to peak at the action through the fence:
Fans who couldn't watch practice trying to watch through the fencing. pic.twitter.com/kTuVKzycNs— Dan Labbe (@dan_labbe) July 29, 2016
Jim Brown attended practice. ... Per Scott Petrak of the Chronicle-Telegram, WR Josh Gordon was “studying the play script” on the sidelines during team drills. ... Storms are in the forecast for Saturday, but if things are clear, practice will begin at 3:25 PM (gates open one hour earlier). ... The first padded practice is Sunday at 3:00 PM.
NOTE: If any other good nuggets come out from the media tonight, I will update this post accordingly.