- Backup QB Johnny Manziel continues to get reps during the week in practice as well as running the scout team. The Browns coaching staff is gaining a comfort level with Manziel and are not nearly as worried about the state of the offense if the rookie were called to action.
As for the notion swirling that Manziel is on the verge of becoming an issue due to his backup status, the rookie QB has been a solid citizen in the locker room and supportive of the Browns and Brian Hoyer. Granted, Manziel does want to play, but isn't or hasn't made any waves.
- The Fast Lane has been told that OC Kyle Shanahan has again put together a few specifics in the event the necessity calls for Manziel to gain snaps. There is a fine line the Browns coaching staff approaches each week regarding the QB situation and do not want to give an impression any disappointment in Hoyer.
- Rookie RB Isaiah Crowell has become a fan favorite due to his productivity and physical running style. Crowell appeared to be fast-tracking to a significant role in the Browns offensive scheme until laying three balls in the turf against the Pittsburgh Steelers during the Browns 31-10 win a few weeks ago.
While the rookie RB isn't in the doghouse, the coaching staff has made their point clear to Crowell that he must learn to secure the ball if he is going to see a large role in the offense. In practice sessions Crowell has lapses when he doesn't secure the ball, leaving the opportunity to be stripped too often for the liking of RB coach Wilbert Montgomery.
Heading into the Browns game versus the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Crowell has had a very good week of practice and the feeling within the locker room is Crowell will gain reps Sunday.
- TE Jordan Cameron does not appear to be in the plan for the Browns against Tampa Bay.Cameron coming off a concussion against the Raiders this past Sunday has yet to be cleared through the concussion protocol process and the Browns have been readying Jim Dray and Gary Barnidge for the increased workload.
In practice sessions, Dray has had a significant role in Cameron's receiving spot, while Barnidge has received reps in the passing game and is a steady contributor in the blocking scheme.
Interestingly, WR Miles Austin has been working with the offense as a receiver in the mode/role Cameron generally fills.
- The chemistry along the offensive line in practice sessions has improved since C Nick McDonald is gaining consistent reps with the first team offense. McDonald performed at an above average level in his first action of the season against the Raiders and the Browns staff anticipates his play will continue to improve.
- Being said on the offensive line, the Browns are preparing for a long day - a physical battle with the Tampa Bay defensive front seven. The Browns coaching staff has been raving about the play of DT Gerald McCoy and the importance of the interior line and FB Kiero Small picking up on the talented lineman.
The Browns coaching staff has picked up on a tendency which is uncustomary for a Lovie Smith defense. The defensive tackles and ends have been pressing, attempting to generate pressure and getting caught out of position early and often. The Browns run game will look to cash in on this look from Tampa.
- During film study, the Browns believe they can pressure QB Mike Glennon of the edges. The Tampa tackles are prodding, the methodical type and have issues in space. The interior protection of the Buccaneers has been mediocre and the Browns appeared poised to bring pressure. Mingo, Sheard and Kruger have been on the field at the same time in some 2-5 looks.