Hue on QB: "Open competition everywhere"

Hue Jackson was not ready to name a starting quarterback on the eve of training camp, saying that there will be "open competition everywhere", including at quarterback. He did give the exception of Joe Thomas.

BEREA,Ohio--Hue Jackson wasn't ready to announce who his starting quarterback will be as training camp is ready to begin. However, he did say he will name the quarterback within two weeks before the preseason opener.

 "I think whoever earns that job is going to earn it out here on this field, but we're going to go through a process here pretty soon," Jackson said prior to the players going through their conditioning tests Thursday afternoon." It's going to show itself really quickly and it would definitely be before we play our first preseason game. So I know everybody's looking for me to say, 'Here's the guy.' But I still want to get out here with our players because all of them have to earn a starting spot as we move forward. So we're going to hit the ground running tomorrow and start a practice and we'll start evaluating that position as well as all of the positions as we move forward.

Jackson did say there was an exception. 
"I think it's open competition everywhere, maybe everybody would say with the exception of (nine-time Pro Bowl left tackle) Joe Thomas. I think we have to earn the right to play for our organization, for our football team, and I think even Joe's going to walk back in this building ready to go and champing at the bit."
Jackson was asked whether Robert Griffin III or Josh McCown would get the majority of the reps with the first team at practice.
"I don't want to get locked into, 'Well, it's going to be 60-40 or 50-50,'" Jackson said. "I think what's most important is whatever I think I need to do and our staff needs to do to evaluate and Sashi (Brown) and Paul (DePodesta) evaluate our players, that's what we'll do and I think that's what's important moving forward."
Jackson said he doesn't think splitting reps will hurt whoever ends up as the starter.
"Obviously, you wish you just obviously knew as you're alluding to so that you could give the guy all the reps that he needs," he said. "But I think we're not at that point yet. I think there's still a little time as we go through the start of training camp before that decision has to be made. I don't want to rush into anything until I think we're getting close to that point to have to do that and i don't think we're at that point yet."
 Jackson said he saw some things in the off-season program that led him to believe that Griffin III could be the starting quarterback, but says he's anxious to see how Griffin III plays in training camp.
"Just play the position we expect it to be played and that's at every position," he said. "We have an expectation of how that position plays and I think contrary to what I think some people feel, I think he was getting there and has done a good job.
"I just think there's still another step," Jackson said. "That was OTAs. The intensity is going to ramp up a little bit at every position. I think what's important is we're trying to create a winning football team here because I truly expect to win, as I said from Day One. So that's what we're going to set out to do at every position."
Although Jackson said he's not ready to name the starting quarterback, it will be done sooner than later. The Browns first preseason game is just two weeks from Friday, Aug. 12 at Green Bay.
"Before the first preseason game," he said. "Oh, yeah. I will. We have to. That's just the right thing to do.
"Right, so you guys will be sitting here two weeks from now reporting it saying 'here we go'."
Extra Points
Haden Close?:Jackson said although CB Joe Haden will start training camp on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list, but he is pleased with his progress.
“Outstanding. He’s chomping at the bit," Jackson said. "We have to kind of put our arms around him and slow him down a little bit because he’s ready to get back out there, and he’s close, very close. I’m excited about getting him back out there with our football team and playing, but he’s done an outstanding job of getting himself healthy. We have a little ways to go, but I think he’s close. I’m excited to watch him once he gets an opportunity to get back on the field.”
Haden took part in the conditioning tests and looked pretty good, moving and running smoothly.
Possible Second Suspension for Armonty Bryant: 
LB Armonty Bryant is facing a four-game suspension from the NFL for violating the substance abuse policy. He also could face another suspension for his conduct related to the case as Bryant plead guilty to a drug charge earlier this week.
Brown said he hasn't heard anything further from the NFL.

“I don’t know what to expect with Armonty," Brown said. "I think the league is going to review it. I’m not sure of that, but we will be in touch with them when they engage. I wish I had more for you, but I just don’t right now.”

 He was asked if the Browns would part ways with him if he had another suspension.

"No,not at this point." 
No Ocho: Jackson confirmed that former NFL WR Chad Johnson and former Browns RB Earnest Byner will be helping coach in training camp. However, Jackson made it clear that Johnson will not be known as "Ochocinco" during his time with the Browns.
"His name is Chad and Chad is just going to assist (senior offensive assistant) Al (Saunders) and (offensive quality control/assistant wide receivers coach) Bob Saunders. Obviously, you guys know my relationship with Chad.
"Chad wants to try his hand at coaching, and what better place to learn than from Al Saunders? I mean he’s the best in the business. We’ve afforded him the opportunity to be here and to see if coaching is for him."
On Earnest Byner, Jackson said.
"Earnest was here with us in the spring and did a tremendous job so we’ve invited him back to be here for training camp. Looking forward to working with Earnest. I’m sure our players are, too, so that’ll be fun.”

 Missing Des: The Browns officially placed DL Desmond Bryant on the reserve/non-football injury list which means he is out for the season with a torn pectoral injury. Jackson said missing Bryant will be a big loss.

:“We’ll do whatever we have to do to have a good defensive football team," he said. "I think (defensive coordinator) Ray Horton is committed to that, and I know Sashi and Paul are committed to helping us, and (vice president of player personnel) Andrew Berry finding other players if need be. We have some guys here on the roster that we’re excited to see and see what they can do for our football team. It’s very unfortunate that it happened with Des, because I think he was on his way to having a great season. He had a great offseason, and obviously, that happened away from here so it’s tough. At the same time, we know injuries are going to happen. It won’t be the last injury we have. We’re going to – knock on wood – hopefully we don’t have too many, and one thing I will preach to our football team is it’s truly about the next man up. Whoever is that next guy that has got to go, he’s got to go get it done. I know that’s a kind of cliché term, but I think that’s the way you have to approach this and that’s the way our football team will.”

The Browns filled Bryant's roster spot by signing TE David Reeves from Duke.



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