Camp: Players to Watch

RB Jerome Harrison

The Sports Xchange looks at three players to keep an eye on as camp begins...

Players to watch in the Browns upcoming training camp...

--Running back Jerome Harrison: Harrison had the misfortune as a rookie in 2006 to play behind Reuben Droughns, who rushed for 1,232 yards in 2005. Then in 2007,'08 and most of 2009 Harrison was stuck behind Jamal Lewis. When Harrison did get his chance at the end of last season with Lewis on injured reserve he made the most of it.

The Browns won their last four games, and the main reason was Harrison rushed for 561 yards over his last three. Now he is out to prove his outburst wasn't a fluke, and by extension show he deserves more than the one-year tender he was forced to sign at the deadline last month. His challenge in training camp will come from rookie Montario Hardesty. The other running backs won't be a major factor.

--Quarterback Jake Delhomme: At least the Browns knew what they had in quarterbacks Derek Anderson and Brady Quinn -- two guys with contrasting personalities and problems throwing the ball accurately. With Delhomme they are not sure about his mechanics. He threw eight touchdown passes and 18 interceptions in 2009 with Carolina one year after guiding the Panthers to the NFC championship. A new start in Cleveland seems to have benefitted Delhomme. He has shown leadership qualities and his teammates are willing to follow. The Browns need that leadership from their quarterback; Quinn never connected with his teammates in his three seasons in Cleveland.

More in question than his leadership is Delhomme's ability to throw the ball accurately, which he did before he hit the major dip in the road last season. If minicamp is an indication of what to expect, Delhomme is back on track. It is worth noting Coach Eric Mangini wants to see Delhomme and Seneca Wallace perform in pads before declaring a starter.

--Cornerback Eric Wright: The 2007 second-round draft choice from Las Vegas has been a starter since his rookie year, but he could find himself the odd man out this summer with the addition of veteran Sheldon Brown and rookie first-round draft pick Joe Haden. Wright has adequate cover skills for a left corner, but he can be a liability in run support. The Browns need a cornerback willing to stick his shoulder into the ball carrier.  Haden had a reputation of playing well on run defense at Florida and Brown earned that reputation with the Eagles.

Hot seat: The Browns sent a message to starting safety Abe Elam when they tendered him a one-year contract worth second-round compensation and then took two safeties in the draft -- T.J. Ward and Larry Asante. Elam wants a multi-year deal. He has to prove he's worth it.

 

BROWNS NOTES

--Milt Morin, a Browns tight end from 1966-75, passed away on July 9, one week before he was to be inducted into the college football Hall of Fame.  Morin, a star at the University of Massachusetts, died of an apparent heart attack.

Morin caught 271 passes for 4,208 yards with the Browns. He made the Pro Bowl in 1968, '69 and '72.

--Defensive lineman Shaun Rogers has avoided jail time for having a loaded handgun in his carry-on bag at Cleveland Hopkins Airport on April 1. Instead, he is entering a 12-month diversion program. He must take a 10-hour weapons course and perform 40 hours of community service. Rogers still faces possible suspension by Commissioner Roger Goodell.

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