The ninth day of Cleveland Browns training camp has ended, and you can find our full Day 9 recap here. Let’s check out what Hue Jackson, Matthew Dayes, Jamie Collins, Joe Haden, and Derrick Kindred had to say on Saturday.
- Even though the scrimmage at the stadium took place on Friday, Jackson hadn’t had a chance to watch the film of it when he spoke to the media. By Saturday, he was able to give more of an overall assessment:
“I saw some individual things. On defense, our defense played a lot of shell coverage, which was good. (DB) Jabrill Peppers showed up last night. (DL) Myles Garrett showed up last night, (LB) Tank (Carder), (DL) Desmond (Bryant) and our first group. Watching (DB) Joe Haden compete and play and tackle and break up passes looked like the old Joe to me. On defense, obviously, (LB) Jamie (Collins Sr.) running around.
There was a scary moment there, I am not going to kid you. When I saw (LB) Christian (Kirksey) go down, my heart stopped a little bit, but just the look in his eyes, I knew he would be OK. We dodged a bullet that way, but as a whole, I watched our defense compete and do some good things.
On offense, we were really spotty. We can run the ball, I know that. We need to throw the ball better. Throw the ball better and throw the ball with more urgency and throw the ball in better spots, but we have to get open, too. It is a combination of both. There were some good things in the passing game. There were some things we missed and some things to work on. We are not supposed to be perfect yet. We are just fine-tuning some things, but I saw some opportunities there that we missed so we have to keep growing that way.
Special teams-wise, it was just good to see the back and forth. During special teams, there was no live tackling, but to watch guys catch, control the ball and do those things was good. Overall, it was a good first outing for the scrimmage. Today, we kind of tied some of those other things into it. I saw the ball go down field a little bit more, which was good. It wasn’t like the real football of last night, but there was improvement of that today. We will keep growing in those areas and keep getting better.”
- OLB Jamie Collins had a pick six on QB Cody Kessler, as discussed in the Day 9 practice report. That is obviously a negative mark for Kessler.
“I still don’t like turnovers (laughter), but we got a chance to score. That is going the other way. That is a huge swing. We have to protect the ball, especially down there, but it is a heck of a play by Jamie. Jamie is a good football player. He is smart. He is heady. I like to see our defense do good things, but I want to make sure our quarterback is not tipping their hand that way. We will keep growing from that one as well.
- As promised, Jackson is going to sit down and make a decision soon about the quarterback position -- but he’s not going to do it alone.
“Absolutely, I will definitely meet with Paul [DePodesta] and Sashi [Brown] and talk about it, just to kind of see where we are. I would love to have their input. I want to see what they have seen and how they feel about it, and we will go from there. ... [The meeting] could be tonight. It could be here in 20 minutes. I don’t know (laughter). ... I try to do everything within the organization as an organization. I’m always going to inform them of what I feel. I love to hear and collaborate with them on the things that they feel, because I think that is important.”
- Although the quarterback who Jackson picks doesn’t guarantee them the opening-day job, he did say that the starter named this coming week will be someone who he thinks can be the guy in 2017.
“...it is also a feeling of who I think can be the guy and then kind of going in that direction, first and foremost, but leave the door open. We do have candidates that can play. Who knows? That guy might go out there and not play as well. I don’t want to shut the door that way, but I also don’t want that guy looking over his shoulder, as well, because you have to play. That is why I say that it can kind of be a little bit of both. This is a tough situation to be in but a good situation to be in because we have good candidates. It is just a matter of making a good choice of who I think is best for our football team, and moving forward.”
- Shifting gears, Jackson praised how CB Joe Haden has been playing:
“He is stronger. He is bigger. I think Joe has put on seven, eight pounds. He is running extremely way. We have done a great job, our medical staff coming up with a plan. As I have mentioned to you guys all earlier before we started of just making sure that we keep all of our guys pretty healthy. He is one of those guys. I think his body needs that rest. I think he has handled that well. When he has practiced, he has practiced extremely well. When he has played in competitive situations, he has done that very well. It is good for Joe.”
- Jackson has praised Dayes multiple times in training camp, and the seventh-round pick talked about the chip on his shoulder and knowing exactly how many running backs were selected ahead of him.
“Every day when I wake up, I think about that. I thought that I was going to go in the third or fourth (round) and ended up going in the seventh round. I am thankful right now because I am with a great organization. I’m blessed and I’m happy with how everything has gone so far for me. ... (He answered a question with ‘29’ about how many RBs were taken ahead of him). ... I wasn’t really counting. I don’t know how I knew that number, but I just know the number to tell you the truth. I know for a fact there were not 29 running backs in that draft that are better than me.”
- One of the big reasons that Collins stayed in Cleveland was the comfort level he had with the coaches and teammates. We’ve heard that his ambitions on defense include a lot of freelancing, and Gregg Williams’ defense will allow him to play all over the place.
“Guys will put you in different positions. [Gregg] is one of those guys. Take advantage of it and make the best of it, that is what I do.”
Besides the $, #Browns Jamie Collins said re-signed because of Hue, Gregg Williams and connections he'd made. "Sometimes it's hard to leave"— Scott Petrak ct (@ScottPetrak) August 5, 2017
- Haden thought one of the most impressive things about the defensive performance at the Orange & Brown Scrimmage was the high level of tackling:
“I think we did a really good job tackling. That is one thing that our coaches really emphasize as far as with the corners and the secondary is make sure we are able to get them on the ground. Communication was really good. We understood the calls and getting calls out so I think as a whole we did pretty well. Just trying to get to the ball a little more and creating more turnovers. We didn’t have too many strips or interceptions so that is something else that we need to work on. Besides that, the tackling was really good and the communication was really good.”
- He is excited about what the defense can bring to the table for 2017:
- There are several new members in the Browns’ secondary this season, and Haden praised everyone for having a high football IQ, including rookie Jabrill Peppers.
“I think he is going to be a really good addition. His football IQ is very high. He understands the game. You could tell that early when we started installing the playbook. He is out there, and he likes to make noise and he is very active, but he is just making great calls, making the checks and seeing what is going to happen before it happens. You can tell he plays with such energy. He loves the game. He is having fun out there. He brings the passion, and with him being a smart football player, he is able to talk and relay the calls very well.”
- Kindred acknowledged the unfortunate nature of Ed Reynolds injury, but that loss is Kindred’s opportunity to seize a starting role.
“Unfortunately, Ed did go down, but somebody has got to step up and take over the role. Just be a leader on the defense. I plan on doing that. There is a lot of competition in the safety room. A lot of players plan on getting in there and showing what they have. ... I definitely feel like I am ready to be a starter. That is what I come out here and work for every day in the film room, with the team and the guys. We brought in a lot of talent at safety. A lot of players want to be out there.”
- Kindred was known as a strong safety last year, but he thinks despite being a more physical guy, that he can transition to free safety and bring that ball hawk mentality:
“[Ball-hawking] is something that I am working on now. I was more of a physical guy [last year], and am still a physical guy. I am making a transition to free (safety) and being in a deep zone. I am working on my ball-hawking skills. They have gotten better from my rookie year, and it has gotten better since.”