Optimism abounds in Berea as the Browns officially kicked off their 2005
season in front of a large and enthusiastic crowd ready for some football.
Coach Romeo Crennel broke the players in with a 90 minute workout in shorts
The players went through conditioning (Thursday),” Crennel said after his
first practice as an NFL head coach. “I’m really looking forward to tomorrow
(Saturday) when we put on the pads.”
Quarterback Trent Dilfer is ready for camp.
“It’s exciting to go in the huddle and get started,” he said. “I can feel the
passion of the city about this team and I’m excited to be a part of it and get
Veteran players welcomed the approach as opposed to the Butch Davis regimen
of practices that some players felt took too much out of them in camp.
“He sees training camp as the most important thing is to have guys ready to
start the season,” Daylon McCutcheon said.
Offensive tackle Ryan Tucker and linebacker Brant Boyer ended the 2004 season
on injured reserve and were glad to get back to camp.
“I’m really excited,” Tucker said. “We have a new system. It’s a new year and
we have the chance to get a fresh start.”
“It’s a fresh start,” Boyer said. “We have new players, new coaches and a new
McCutcheon has a lot of confidence in Crennel’s approach.
“He’s won everywhere he’s been,” McCutcheon said. “You can’t come into camp
any other way than to be optimistic.
“I think this is a whole different team from last year,” McCutcheon said. “If
you look at the roster, we have a whole different team.”
McCutcheon is right there. Of the 91 players listed on the training camp
roster, only 39 were on the roster a year ago—nearly 60 percent turnover.
“I can see where everybody’s thinking we’re going to have a long season,”
Boyer said. “There’s going to be skepticism and the unknown factors of how we’ll
“I’m not going to make any predictions, but we are going to surprise a lot of
people,” Boyer said. “We have quality people and a quality organization with
people of good character.”
MISSING IN ACTION: As the training camp opened, No. 1 draft choice Braylon Edwards was the lone player missing.
READY TO GEL: The Browns are hoping to use training camp to pull their
offensive line together. L.J. Shelton was brought in to replace Ross Verba at
“We just want to get ready for the season,” Shelton said. “We have time to
work together and get our timing down during camp. By the time the season
starts, we’ll have no excuses.”
Tucker is excited about the additions brought in to upgrade the line.
“With (Joe) Andruzzi, Shelton, (Cosey) Coleman—all veteran guys coming in, we
should be a lot better,” Tucker said. “I’m really looking forward to playing
with those guys.”
THREE'S A CROWD?: One of the interesting battles in training camp looms with
Lee Suggs, William Green and Reuben Droughns battling for playing time. Suggs is
the incumbent after rushing for over 700 yards, including three 100-yard games
to finish the season.
“I’m trying to use the momentum from the last three games from last year,”
Suggs said. “I’m ready to get going. In the NFL, you never have too many running
LOGJAM AT WIDE RECIEVER: The wide receiver position appears deep with Antonio Bryant,
Dennis Northcutt, Andre Davis, Richard Alston, Frisman Jackson and C.J. Jones
returning from a year ago. Add in Braylon Edwards and Josh Cribbs to the mix and
the numbers could be interesting.
“We have a lot of numbers there,” Davis said. “I feel we’re deep and that is
Davis has been mentioned in trade rumors.
HELD OUT: CB Daylon McCutcheon, LS Ryan Pontbriand, OL Craig Osika and LB
Brant Boyer were held out of practice with minor injuries. Crennel said none of
the injuries were serious.