BEREA, Ohio — The Cleveland Browns hope they can catch lightning in a bottle again.
The Browns drafted defensive back Eric Hagg in the seventh-round (248th overall) in the 2011 NFL Draft with a compensatory pick. Hagg is now in position to be the Browns starting free safety.
In the 2012 NFL Draft, the Browns drafted defensive back Trevin Wade in the seventh-round (245th overall) with a compensatory pick.
Their backgrounds are similar, both having played four years in the secondary of major college programs. Hagg played four years at Nebraska, while Wade played four years at Arizona and had 180 tackles and 12 interceptions.
Wade made his debut in the preseason opener with the Lions and had three tackles and broke up two passes.
“It was pretty crazy, at first,” Wade said. “My first snap was really fast, but after that first series I adjusted and started to feel more comfortable and tried to get some pass breakups and some tackles.”
“I thought he did a good job,” Pat Shurmur said. “They tried a double move on him, he was right there. They tried to throw a deep ball on him, he was right there.
“From what I could tell he played pretty well,” he said. “When I went back and watched the film in detail, it held up that way. He’s making good progress. He has a very, very good feel for the game and I think it showed up the other night.”
Wade (5-10, 190) lined up with the first unit in the nickel package covering the slot receiver on Sunday with Dimitri Patterson sidelined with an ankle injury.
“I’m just going with the flow right now,” Wade said. “Wherever coach puts me I’m just trying to pick up on the game faster so if I do get thrown in the fire I’ll be fine.”
Wade admits covering the slot receiver, especially at the NFL level, is tough.
“It’s pretty hard if you’re not playing with technique because you’re in the middle of the field guarding a little quick guy,” Wade said. “You just have to be patient and believe what the coaches are telling you. Play your technique and you’ll be fine.”
Wade said he hadn’t spent a lot of time covering the slot receiver until he arrived with the Browns.
“I have this camp,” he said. “”I’ve been playing the slot and corner mostly watching everyone from both sides and picking up on my playbook because I have to learn corner and nickel. I’m just trying to find a way to adjust to both of them and pick up on things fast.”
As a bottom of the draft player, Wade is just happy to get an opportunity and is trying to make the most of it.
“I expect a big challenge and that’s what it is,” Wade said. “If I have limited reps I want to make the most of reps and if (they increase), I want to make the most of them.”
Schwartz Continues Reps: Shurmur was asked how rookie RT Mitchell Schwartz did in his first preseason game. He gave up a strip-sack early in the game and he was called for a false start.
“There are two things going on in this game,” Shurmur said. “Number one, I think (the Lions) are a very excellent pass-rush team they are schemed to pass-rush and get after the quarterback.”
Shurmur said Schwartz gained valuable experience.
“I think there are some things he could learn from that performance,” he said. “He’s going to get lots of reps. We left him in there for a half, when we took the other ones out for a quarter. I think he did some really good things in the game, as well. I’m not going to paint a picture of his performance. I just think he’s going to learn to become a very good player at right tackle and he’s going to get a lot of reps.”
Injury Update: The same 15 players who did not practice on Sunday, also sat out Monday. On the stationary bike were: LB D’Qwell Jackson (shoulder), TE Ben Watson, DE Frostee Rucker, DB Usama Young (hamstring), DL Phil Taylor (pectoral) and TE Jordan Cameron (back). The other players who didn’t practice were: LB Scott Fujita, WR Travis Benjamin, DL Marcus Benard , FB Eddie Williams, LB Chris Gocong (Achilles), RB Trent Richardson (knee), DB Dimitri Patterson (ankle), DL Scott Paxson and WR Mohamed Massaquoi (head).
Shurmur said that if any of the players that haven’t practiced are able to practice Tuesday, they might play against the Packers. Shurmur said that Richardson was in the facility doing rehab work, but would not speculate on his return.