That is according to packersnews.com, which reports that unless some “unforeseen circumstances” arise, the Browns will spend part of training camp this summer practicing with the Packers.
Last summer the Packers and Houston Texans practiced for two days in August prior to their preseason game. The agreement with the Browns has not been formally announced, however, as the Packers are waiting to see if there are any changes to training camp in the new collective bargaining agreement that the NFL and the players’ union is currently working on.
Earlier this week, Green Bay head coach Matt LaFleur expressed the benefit of practicing with another team, according to packersnews.com:
“It’s good to change the scenery a little bit and go against a different scheme You try not to scheme up your own team on a daily basis. It’s more or less about trying to build on your foundation and get good at the core concepts you’re going to run throughout the season, really in all three phases. It gives you somebody else to go against and tests those concepts against somebody else.”
On the Browns side, going up against an NFC North team in practice makes sense. New head coach Kevin Stefanski is obviously familiar with the Packers after spending the past 14 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, which could help him and the coaching staff evaluate his new team as he compares them to a familiar opponent.
The Browns held joint practices with the Indianapolis Colts last August. Those practices were highlighted by numerous fights, most prominently on the second day, which lead to players talking about how they went to Indianapolis looking to “impose their will” on the Colts and then-head coach Freddie Kitchens talking about “not backing down.”
That was fun in August, but it got less and less fun as the season went along and the Browns could not get out of their own way with penalties on an almost weekly basis.
It seems unlikely that Stefanski will follow the same model when the Browns practice with the Packers this summer.