Countdown to The Draft
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By: Matt Fontana
Browns led the league in what?– By now I am sure Browns fans are sick of hearing about “drops”. Unfortunately the fans in attendance for today’s practice, they saw their fair share. The Brownies receiving corps had a lot of issues holding onto the ball today. The highlight, or lowlight, from the day came from none other than Greg Little. Little burned Buster Skrine in a drill only to drop a wide open pass from Colt McCoy in the endzone. Little instantly fell to the ground and rolled around following the horrid drop.
Make the team– A goal shared by many Browns players on the field today. The team waived backup kicker Jeff Wolfert last night, their first “cut” of the preseason. As cut days approach, the race will be on for players to win a spot on the roster. The Browns currently have 89 players on their active roster. Their roster needs to be down to 80 players by Thursday August 28th and to 53 by August 31st. As of today, Cleveland has 15 undrafted rookie free agents with about a dozen “journeymen” players that are all playing for a job.
Welcome Back– Several key players made their return to practice today. D’Qwell Jackson, Ben Watson, Frostee Rucker and Travis Benjamin all participated in practice. Watson has been battling an undisclosed injury all of camp. He was limited in his participation today. Rucker, big knee brace and all, practiced fully with the team. He said his new piece of “gear” on his right knee won’t slow him down and that he has played with one before. Jackson (shoulder) and Benjamin (soreness) both returned fully after missing the Green Bay game.
Leader on Defense- Most people would not call defensive tackle Ahtyba Rubin a vocal player. That doesn’t mean Rubin isn’t a leader at one of the youngest positions for the Browns. Rubin, in his fifth year in Cleveland, is the longest tenured Brown at the defensive line position and ranks third for NFL service.
He has stated in the past that he would rather let his actions speak louder than his words when it comes to being a leader on the team. He was doing just that today at practice. Rubin was seen, multiple times, putting extra work in. While others would be taking their turns in drills, Rubin was working in-between his reps, shedding blocks of Jabaal Sheard and working on his quickness off the snap. After practice, he and Sheard were seen doing a bit of extra running as well.
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