BEREA - No one is harder on himself than is Gerard Warren.
The defensive tackle readily admits that he didn't play well last season after putting in what he called a good rookie season. Coach Butch Davis challenged Warren to step up and become a team leader prior to last season, and Warren didn't come through.
"Being a young guy, that puts pressure on you," Warren said of being a team leader. "I try to lead by example instead of being vocal. I don't think I did an excellent job of leading by example the way coach Davis wanted me to. You could say I was in the cellar by not performing the way I wanted to perform. I tried to keep up my spirits by looking at the positives that I gained out of the season."
Warren dedicated himself to reporting to training camp in better shape this year. He looks trimmer than he did at this stage last year, although he admits that there's still more work to be done.
"I wouldn't say I got complacent. Overconfident, maybe," Warren said. "You can never get complacent in this game. I just didn't take full advantage of the (2002) offseason like I should have. "I feel pretty decent. I'm a lot stronger than I was in my first two seasons. I've done a lot of work in the weight room. Conditioning-wise, I feel great. I feel like my endurance is back up, so I won't get winded in the fourth quarter of games when I'm double-teamed."
If all goes well, Warren hopes to be considered among the best tackles in the league.
"I want to dominate," Warren said. "I want my name to be mentioned with the greats when I leave this game. I hope I'm mentioned with the Joe Greenes and the Warren Sapps."
PICKING IT: The two-minute offense didn't exactly click during the afternoon. On the first possession, Kelly Holcomb had a pass intercepted by middle linebacker Barry Gardner. On the next series cornerback Raymond Walls picked off a Josh Booty pass.
Tim Couch didn't participate in the two-minute drills.
FIT & TRIM: Linebacker Kevin Bentley has shed 15 pounds from the end of last season, which puts him at 235. Bentley's reason for lowering his weight? "Coach wants fast linebackers that can hit."
SECOND LINERS: Much has been written and said about offensive guard Qasim Mitchell during the offseason. Mitchell definitely looks huge at 355 pounds, but he doesn't appear to be carrying much excess fat. Mitchell is working on the right side with the second unit.