Quotes to Note on Browns RB's
What is the expectation for second-year RB Duke Johnson in the 2016 season?
"He (Johnson) has had a good off-season. He is physically stronger, gained a little mass which will help him with impact, but does not appear to have lost any speed, quickness, elusiveness. We've had him doing plenty of leg-work, hoping to get away from the hamstring issues -- and having him available to get his work in as we continue to implement the offense. He is a big part of what we want to do, Duke has the ability to be an every down type back here and he's a great weapon in the passing game.
Duke (Johnson) is tough, he is physical though you wouldn't assume he to be due to his size and he has a huge heart. We love the ideas of knowing we can manipulate some match-ups due to his ability coming out of the backfield -- he is a weapon."
Heading into training camp, who is the starting RB and is this another competition at the position?
"We are looking at it this way, we have guys here that we believe have the capability to be potential starting type players and we want to see them on the field to see who is the best fit, who does things better than say the next guy. I mean you saw last season, Duke Johnson can play in this league and we believe he'll be an effective Cleveland Browns player for us this season. Each of the RBs we have in here are a bit different -- Terrell Watson is a bigger guy, he's not shifty, but he can make a guy miss, can run through a tackle and is physical, determined. Crowell has some shake and bake to him, but we want him to run to daylight, be aggressive, he's a young guy that has the skills, he just needs to learn patience, understand to follow the blocks. Glenn Winston has shown is he has a little 'pop' to his game, he isn't the quickest, he isn't the most elusive, he'll drop a shoulder to gain that extra yard.
When you look at what we are doing, every position is basically a competitive environment in one sense or another. We have some guys that are starters now and will be starters in September, we have many positions which the starter has not been etched in stone and the battles for roster spots may be at its greatest this season for this team. We hope with each passing year those starting roles are further along and we're improving our quality and depth."
Is there a RB that has a leg up coming out of the OTA's?
"Duke Johnson has been the most impressive due to his explosiveness and he's tougher than any of us thought coming in here. We intend on running the football and with that, you generally need no less than two quality RBs to achieve at this level, Johnson is one, the question is who will be the second. But again, there is a world of difference when talking about players running around in shorts in May/June and players getting it on in August --- the cream will rise to the top."
Could we see a player surprise in camp and preseason activities?
"Sure, Terrell Watson will be a guy to keep an eye on. Most people don't realize if not for a couple guys in Cincinnati on the roster, for a playoff caliber team in place, Watson may have gotten a look. We certainly knew about him and were pleased to being him to Cleveland."
The Browns have been weak or below average rushing the ball, what is the expectation for this team in the 2016 season?
"Winning game is what this league is about whether you rush for 1500+ yards (as the Browns did in 2015) or 2400 yards (as Buffalo did a season ago). Neither team won enough to be a playoff team, so I wouldn't say there is a simple plan -- you have to build upon on what you know, what you have and go from there. We feel pretty good heading into camp with the group we have here and expect our team to run the ball better and win more games that the Browns did a season ago.
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