BEREA—The marquee player in return for Braylon Edwards for the Browns was Chansi Stuckey.
He was on the field for the first time with in Cleveland on Thursday after having a physical and meeting with the coaches on Wednesday.
“With flights and things they didn’t make practice,” Eric Mangini said. “They were in the meetings with the coaches and will be on the practice field today.”
Mangini said the familiarity with the players will allow them to contribute quickly.
“There are variations in the systems,” he said. “But knowing both of those guys, they’ll be sure they know what they’re doing.”
Mangini said both Stuckey and Jason Trusnik might be able to play against the Bills.
“We’ll work it out and see where they all fit in and how special teams go.”
Mangini said that there are some similarities between Stuckey and Mike Furrey, in terms of being slot receivers.
“Chansi doesn’t play defense, but there are similarities and I think that group will work out together.”
“It’s a new team, a new start,” Stuckey, who wears No. 88 said. “I hope to have a fresh start in Cleveland. I’m happy to be re-united with Coach Mangini and Coach Daboll.”
Stuckey said he knows what the coaches expect of him and thinks he will be able to contribute quickly.
“Coach Mangini knows me and he’ll see how I do and when I’m ready,” he said.
Stuckey said it doesn’t bother him that he leaves a 3-1 team and comes to a 0-4 team.
“I still have a job,” he said. “I think the Lord has blessed me and I’m excited for the opportunity with the Browns.
“I think this team is on the verge of doing some great things.”
Stuckey said he can play both slot receiver or on the outside.
“I’m comfortable being on the field on the inside or the outside,” he said. “I think if you can play both spots it helps you gain an advantage over some of the cornerbacks that have a tougher time covering the slot”
Stuckey feels he has a good understanding of the different defenses and that helps give him running his routes.
“I feel as though I understand the defense and the nuances the different defenses give you,” he said. “That allows you to be the most productive you can be.”
The Safety Valve: WR Mike Furrey played safety against the Bengals and Mangini said he will most likely be used more in the role.
“I’m not opposed to him playing more defensive reps,” he said. “In Detroit, he played there a lot.
He’s been working at safety since OTAs. He has a comfort level there.”
Homecoming: LB Jason Trusnik is enjoying his time back in northeast Ohio after playing his high school football at Nordonia and collegiately at Ohio Northern.
“Coming back here is great,” he said. “Since I was a kid I dreamed of this.”
Trusnik is listed as a linebacker wearing No. 93, but it is expected he will see most of his time on special teams.
“My role in the past has been on special teams,” he said. “I love special teams. It takes a certain mentality to play on special teams.”
The WR Corps: With the departure of WR Braylon Edwards, the Browns don’t have a proven deep ball threat. Mangini said WR Mohamed Massaquoi would most likely be that guy.
“I think Mohamed has shown his ability to get open deep,” he said.
Massaquoi didn’t have much to say about being the perceived No. 1,
“I just continue to work hard in practice and continue to try and make plays,” he said. “I want to be the best I can be. I’m just going to be myself.”
Mangini said there was no noticeable difference for Massaquoi or Brian Robiskie in their first practices without Edwards.
“They’ve both looked like they have throughout the process,” he said. “Mohamed has gotten more time than Brian has, but they’re both coming along.”
The line of thinking is with Edwards not on the field, Massaquoi will be drawing most of the attention.
“There are times when you’re going to get double covered,” Mangini said. “It depends on the coverage and what the other receivers are doing. It’s hard to double cover if you’re running the ball effectively.”
Mangini continues to insist that Josh Cribbs is legitimate as a wide receiver and not an experiment.
“It’s not an experiment,” he said. “He continues to grow there. I think he’s done a good job.”
Injured: Mangini said that he thinks most, if not all, of the injured players have a chance at playing this week, including K Phil Dawson and RB Jamal Lewis.
“I think all of those guys have a real chance to play this week,” Mangini said.
Lewis was listed as questionable after being doubtful last week with a hamstring injury. He practiced in a limited capacity on Wednesday.
“I’m day-to-day, but you never know with a hamstring,” Lewis said. “I’m not trying to overdo it.”
On James Davis to IR: One of the moves slipped in last weekend was placing RB James Davis on injured reserve with a presumed shoulder injury. Mangini made it sound as though he needed surgery.
“It’s always hard,” Mangini said. “James has done a nice job since he got here. It was one of those situations that it wasn’t going to get any better and so by doing the things medically necessary now, he should be ready to come back next year.”